Month: September 2019

Hiwan Museum

Jack has been pestering me for ages to chaperone a field trip for his class.  Never mind that I’m the room parent, the grade coordinator for parties, the Friday Folder parent for Sam, that I come in for reading groups with both classes, and I’ve chaperoned several field trips in the past.  But it’s been so looooooong he moans 😉

So I was able to join the fourth graders on their trip to the Hiwan Museum in Evergreen, CO.  The museum is a collection of buildings, preserving and old pioneer homestead.  We split into smaller groups and followed our guide from house to house, pretending to be pioneers.

First we met in the kitchen to make Journey Cake. We ate it at during our picnic lunch and the kids loved it.

Then we toasted the pioneers with a sample of “Ginger Water.”  This vinegar-based drink received a chorus of blechs from the kids – except the grown-ups who agreed that it grew on you, and Jack’s friend Ruby, who apparently loves vinegar and happily collected everyone’s rejected second sips.

Next we visited the school house.  The kids were horrified by the strict rules about cleaning and staying quiet.  They practiced reading aloud from an old reader about sheep shearing, and wrote their pioneer names on slates.

In this room they pretended to pack a wagon for their trip.

In the final house, the Mercantile store, they picked a career, got a budget, and practiced adding up their shopping list.

After lunch it was back on the bus for a squishy, bumpy ride home.  The kids loved the field trip!  I’ll admit I was hoping for a little more hands-on, like wool spinning, butter churning, and candle-making.  Maybe I can find a place like that to take the family this summer. 

Things are going well

Just a note to show some things we have done.

Sam continues to work on his reading skills. We love the Pig the Pug books. Here is his dramatic take on the original book:


Jack had a Webelos meeting tonight where they worked on the “Cast Iron Chef” belt loop. He prepared a gorgeous egg-in-the-hole all by himself:

I went to a special “Glow Zumba” class and it was stupid fun with all my regular zumba pals (I’m the one with yellow glasses).

The cats are cuddly and still love the catio:

Ben is working hard, but still finds time to play with the kids, help with homework, and keep me quiet company in the evening. I look forward to us seeing the Downton Abby movie this Friday.  I haven’t been to the Alamo in FIVE WEEKS – quelle horreur!



Happy Birthday Sam!

Sam turned 6 years old on Friday the 13th.  This one had a full moon, an especially spooky birthday 😉 Not really, he had a great day!  We all got up early with him at 6:30 for bacon and eggs and waffles, and to open presents.  He received his much-hyped Megatron Transformer.  We also invested in a new bike, hoping to stir his interest in biking.  He had been using a third-hand bike that didn’t have hand brakes or kick stand or training wheels, all things that he wanted.  The pedals were also spiky, scraping his legs when he tried to brake by dragging his feet.  The new bike has all these features and I hope it will make him more comfortable with riding (and it’s green!).

He said he had a great day at school, then spent all afternoon playing with his new toys.  Dinner was “McDonalds Happy Meal, eating it on a blanket on the floor while I watch TV” exactly as requested.  Unikitty and Team Titans Go were his viewing choices.

Saturday was his birthday party.  We have 5 friends from school come to play crafts and games, themed around monsters.  Amanda came over to help me assemble monster-themed treats for the kids, and I think we pulled off some great creations!


The Big Hit was the Kaiju-destruction course in the backyard.  All month I have been collecting boxes, even making the rounds at the grocery store begging for discard boxes.  We set these up in towers for the kids to crash while running from Godzilla.  They snuck up to the Godzilla “nest” and stole a monster egg, the ran back through the towers to safety where they could smash open their eggs for candy.  Once everyone had a turn, the repeated building and crashing towers until I called them in for another game.  Later they went back out build enormous forts using the boxes.

Many smiles and much laughter from all the kids tell me it was a pretty good party.

What they learned at school today.

At school pick-up this Monday afternoon, the boys were bursting to tell me the wonderful things they learned at school today.  I had a running description all the way home from both.

Jack replicated his science teacher’s experiment for us after they had a quick snack.


Meanwhile, Sam excitedly told me he learned to roll his tongue and to dab.  <Facepalm>  Here he is demonstrating both skills at the same time.

Hey, most days he says insists that he learned “nothing” and denies doing any reading, writing, coloring, or numbers.  So the fact that he shared anything of his own free will is a win!

Exploring new playgrounds

Last week we finally got to try this cool playground down by Federal and Colfax.  It’s called Paco Sanchez park and from the pictures I could tell it had some really unique and challenging playscapes.  In the instant I parked, Sam leapt out of the van, running for the park.  It had this cool spider-web climbing tower with a long curly slide.  There was also a huge, steep slide that Jack thoroughly enjoyed, but Sam couldn’t muster the courage to go down alone.

We’ll definitely have to return another day!  Perhaps with padding – Sam hurt his back with scrapes and bruises a couple times.  I think he bent off the end of the slide too fast and at a band angle.  He’s a tough cookie though.

We got a couple pasties to tide off hunger long enough to visit Mile High Comics afterward.  We usually only come for Free Comic Book Day in May, but they had fun picking out a few comics to purchase.  The shop can be overwhelming but Ben seems to know his way around their stacks and stacks of comics.  They have cool models and figurines that probably make the place magical and larger than life to the kids (seems like a ramshackle warehouse to me, but it’s mostly nice).

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