Thursday, March 31, 2011

Trophy Festival photos

The boys played in the Suzuki Violin trophy festival this month and did fabulously of course. I did not get around to making videos of their songs - Dinoguy did Minuet 1 and Trainboy did Long, long ago. But here they are with their violins showing off their trophies. I will get videos of them playing up again soon.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Spring break

It was some lion cubs' birthday and the kids got cupcakes. She only ate part of the frosting. It was a really good cupcake.
They ate theirs completely though.
Princess LOVES seeing the animals. She also loves the movie Madagascar. Is there a connection?
 The spring break for public schools around here was mid March. I was feeling the need for a break from our schedule so I made it a "spring break" for us too. We went to the zoo, the science museum and on a hike at the Nature preserve. We also went to the park with friends, and Dinoguy attended soccer camp. It was a busy week of fun.
Water play at the zoo!

Fixitman was able to go to the zoo with us which was fun. Both boys took in nature stuff from our elm tree to get points in the nature exchange, Dinoguy almost has enough for some antlers he wants to buy with his points - where are we going to put those?
This was them playing and suggesting I take a picture. Love it.
He is so stinking cute!
 I didn't take the camera with me anywhere else that week unfortunately which was too bad, the math midway at the science museum was very awesome and we are planning to go back and have more fun at it. They had some cool stuff. Then to show how awesome I am, we hiked 2.5 miles at the nature preserve while I carried baby on my front and Princess on my back. It was a fun hike and made me feel good about exercise - if it enables me to do fun stuff with my kids because I am strong, it is worth it!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Pineapple flower coming soon!

This morning I decided it was probably safe to take my pineapple plants outside again. Look what I found! A flower bud on my largest plant! I am so excited!
Pineapple bud

The whole plant (trimmed for winter)

I planted this pineapple about when this little Princess
looked like this:
So its been over 2 years, which is about what it's supposed to take.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Foil dinners & dump cake

Dinoguy had to help with an outdoor meal for Cub scouts. So Fixitman dug a pit and started a fire while I prepped stuff for foil dinners. Then we had dump cake for dessert. The kids loved watching the fire, even though it got pretty chilly once the sun went down. It was a delicious dinner though.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Tree study

We have officially identified ALL of the trees in the yard, though I have forgotten the names already of one that was really cool. But the big news is that the suspected elm in the back yard is definitely an elm. See the winged seeds (called samaras?) I was leaning toward winged elm but I am questioning that again. It may just be an American Elm. It's an interesting question because of Dutch Elm disease.

Dinoguy and Trainboy started a nature journal, making drawings of the tree, its seeds and such. They got pretty into it. Of course when we went to the zoo they were only too happy to exchange their nature journal entries for points at the nature exchange. Oh well.

This page from Texas Forest Service has been very useful, but we had a few books about trees last fall that helped more overall. It was easier to see the differences and learn about trees from a book than a web page.

Other trees we have: We have a crape myrtle and Live Oak in our front yard. There is one small silver maple in the back yard as well as a sugarberry (or hackberry). Then there is the one I can't remember that was cool. Oh well, guess we need to check that tree book out again!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Box violin

I finally made Princess a box violin to play. She was ecstatic. Now she can practice her violin alongside her brothers.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Pi Day Pies 2011

Chicken pot pie
Peach pie
Mock Cherry Pie (cranberry and raisin pie)
Three pies this year for dinner. I had a terrible fight with my pie crust this time. I think it was that I used salted butter instead of unsalted but it could have been a few other things too. But it turned out alright and we enjoyed our delicious pies. The cranberry and raisin pie was really good, it was a fun new pie to try. Dinoguy enjoyed helping make the decorations for the tops of the pies, while Trainboy helped make the fillings. We all enjoyed eating them. I love pi day! :D

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Blue & Gold

Highlights from the Blue & Gold banquet in February. It was my first to attend as well as first to help plan and carry out. It went well - everyone had fun and there was good food.
Dinoguy's octopus cake for the cake competition. He wanted to make one that looked just like a real octopus but settled for this more cartoon-y one at my request. Cake making is now on his list of professions he plans to have.
Posing with his cake. Just a little bit of energy. The theme was "Aloha Cubs"
The table centerpieces I was in charge of. I had the wolves paint the pots and help mold some of the chocolate lollipops which are shaped like sea creatures.
Baby and Trainboy had hawaiian shirts. Fixitman isn't wearing one because his were used in the stage show.
Some of the kids and adults learning a hula.
Baby loves to stand.
Princess ate a lot of lollipops.
Dinoguy after popping his balloon to get beads.

Saturday, March 05, 2011

More snow

Way way too much snow in February. I'm hoping spring is here to stay in March and we won't have any more cold snaps.

Loved the snow angels. Especially seeing Princess make one on her own. So sweet

Friday, March 04, 2011

Lost a tooth?

When did Trainboy get so big? Loosing teeth already. He told me it was loose and that evening it fell out. I still can't believe it. He was excited because he was going to get a dollar from the tooth fairy. Sweet boy.

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Going to the zoo zoo zoo

This year we were given a zoo membership by my parents for Christmas so we'll be going to the zoo all year long! We have been enjoying it a lot, especially because of the fun new African Savannah. This trip was with friends and we got to feed the giraffes again!

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Because its true

He is handsome like daddy. Almost 4 months old, almost 19 pounds in this picture. They grow so fast!

Tuesday, March 01, 2011


We had a morning of number doubling a few weeks ago. The boys were seeing who could get the highest double number - I was hearing 256 and 512's, so then I helped them go a bit higher.  (It turned out they had really been enjoying the book 512 ants). We eventually needed to write them down to double accurately and quickly made it past a million which had Trainboy cheering, but finished. Dinoguy said he was going to go on to a googol but his interest had waned by a billion. (And I ran out of board space). It was fascinating to watch him think thru the numbers for doubling - checking and considering the next place value. It was excellent arithmetic practice and much more interesting than traditional worksheets.  Anyway, just another example of why large numbers are great for kids and why I don't think you should delay introducing them if the kids are interested in them.

I read them the story One grain of rice (one of my favorites) afterward to continue the discussion.Thankfully I took a picture because the next day Princess erased it for us. (The last number is 1,073,741,824.)


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