Friday, June 30, 2017

Vacation Bible School Performance

Our children love Vacation Bible School. Sophie and Connor just finished the week of VBS learning about Paul's mission to spread the Good News. On the last day they had their song performances.

First we begin with their clan chants. Connor was in the Aurelius tribe.

Sophie was in the Octavian clan.

And then of course they had their songs. Ainsley LOVED the songs. As you can see she was happy to join in with the other kids.

 Connor was a bit skittish about joining in at first, but once he was by his family, he went crazy with dancing along.

Sophie of course has no problem being the center of attention. She also made some friends and insisted that she get pictures with them. :) Sophie makes friends no matter where she goes... unless it's one of her siblings and they have to clean a room together... in which case you'd think they'd been enemies for years.

Thank you VBS for another wonderful year with our children.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Police Academy- Oney Version

As a community there are often times when we could join together to better our area, our schools, and even our neighborhoods. However, it's often easier to just stay inside our own bubble of friends and only focus within our family unit. 

However, it is nice and encouraging when someone reaches out and assists another. We were shopping at Sprouts and the kids wanted to park next to the Police car. I actually love parking near a police vehicle... I figure people are less likely to break into my car if it is next to a police vehicle. Anyway, as we walked towards Sprouts the policemen came out and Connor waved at them and told them that we parked next to them. The Rowlett police then offered the kids a chance to sit inside the police car. 

Everyone was thrilled! Connor turned on the lights and even pushed the siren button. Sophie got to sit in the drivers seat next to the computer. Ainsley just focused on sitting next to her sister. 

Afterwards all the kids (even Colin) got a sticker. It was so nice of the police to go out of their way to entertain my children. They could have just waved and gone on their way, but instead they stopped to spend time with my kids, let them ask questions, and play around in their squad car. For that kindness I will always appreciate them. Thank you Rowlett police!

PS- No criminals were arrested during this time, however, I'm sure that Rowlett is a safer place now that we have some newly aspired police officers in the city.

Friday, June 23, 2017

It's Science at the Perot!

As previously stated, I've been trying to keep the kids busy this summer... helps with my sanity. Anyway, Fridays has become our designated "field trip from the house" day. Last week was the zoo. This week- the Perot Museum in downtown Dallas!

They have a large variety of educational topics. The kids discovered how weight differs on different planets and our moon using a bowling ball to demonstrate the differences. As Sophie realized, she likes the "Moon" because it's not as heavy. But the bowling ball was much heavier on Jupiter. 

Also they got to see a Sauropod footprint and how large it was compared to them.

You can see part of the Sauropod's skeleton next to the skeleton of a T-Rex. Makes the T-Rex look pretty small. I tried to get a picture of the entire Sauropod, but unfortunately it was too big to get it all in the camera frame.

Much easier to get a picture of the T-Rex.

There were also small dinosaurs that were about the size of our wiener dog at home. 

And of course, turtles were around during the dinosaur age and my own Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle (Connor) insisted on a picture of it. 

 And there were also several underwater dinosaurs which were dug up here in Texas. You can tell Colin is more interested in napping.

 And Mammoth bones have also been discovered in Texas as well.

 Here is the vertebrae from the Sauropod (or back bone).

And a T-Rex footprint. Sophie modeled it's size with her own foot.

Then I did as well since I couldn't get any of the other kids to do it. (PS- If you are Brian... don't judge me by my footwear).

My favorite part was probably seeing all the dinosaur skeletons. But the kids much prefer Level 2. We'll get there in a moment.

On the next level, the kids got to ride the "Earthquake Machine". It simulates different levels of earthquakes and moves the ground beneath your feet.

And then there was the water cycle, which Sophie was able to explain to Connor about how water can be a solid, liquid, and a gas.

 However Connor preferred to show Sophie the "Rock Wall", which shows the different layers of rock in the ground. Maybe this is why he keeps digging up our yard... he's looking for rock layers. Or perhaps just worms.

 Next we visited the gems where of course, Sophie and Connor had to fight over who got to turn the geode first.

Very important to be first I guess. And it was also important that the person was able to both "open" AND "close" it... not just one.

Next level talked about animals and ecosystems. I particularly liked the bear. Perhaps it was because we got to see them in Alaska.

However, it was the Engineering Department that was the kids' FAVORITE spot. They got to build roadways....

Navigate remote control cars...

Build things using gears...

And sing loudly along with computers that controlled instruments. (Colin slept through it amazingly).

And since today was in the 100s, I later let them cool off in the water play area outside.

The kids had a great time while we were there, but as the afternoon progressed and lunch time came and went so did their behavior. Go figure. Oh well, at least I can say that we did something educational today that also expelled some of their energy.

Definitely a worthwhile trip for all ages if you are in the Dallas area. I was hoping it wouldn't be as busy as it was today, but we ended up having to content with several field trips and summer camps today. Oh well.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Summer Swimming

With 4 kids it's difficult to provide diverse engaging activities over the summer, especially on a limited budget. However, I've found that spending 3 days a week going swimming has helped burn their energy and keep them distracted.

And hopefully with so much pool time, perhaps they'll even get better with actual swimming.

Needless to say, we might end up having lots of swimming pictures posted over these summer months.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Summer Project at the Zoo

Over the past few summers, Sophie, Connor, and myself have put together non-fiction easy reading books. In the past we did one over Plants and another about Life on a Farm. Well, this year the kids decided they wanted to do an alphabet book over animals. Since Connor is learning to read and preparing for Kindergarten soon, this seemed like an excellent suggestion. Plus this time Ainsley got to join in and help. 

Using our zoo membership, I thought I'd share some of the pages we have started putting together. Of course we still have more pages to go and more animals to explore and add, but we are making excellent progress. I'm excited to do this project with the kids.