Monday, March 14, 2011

The Firefighters Hall and Museum

This museum is located in Minneapolis, open to the public on Saturdays.  We took DJ's friends here on his birthday.  If we had come during April through October, we could have had a ride around the neighborhood in a vintage firetruck.  While this place is truly a museum, showing beautifully restored vintage firetrucks and other related items, it also has plenty of hands-on activities to keep younger visitors interested for a good hour or more!

A guest gets to pull an old-fashioned fire alarm

One fire engine is completely open for children (and adults) to climb on and explore.  The wipers and several sets of lights kept this boy busy for quite some time.

A wall of firemen gear for trying on!

Kade took this seriously.  He insisted he needed to walk in these over to the fire truck and climb in. 

A large car/train table for the little ones.

At the "fire station" this table is loaded with books to browse through...all about fire, firemen, and fire trucks.

The museum has expanded to include a room for police.

A firemen's pole to slide down was another fun activity here.  The website has interesting descriptions of this place and tells the stories behind many of the engines (if you're interested in that sort of thing).  Also, the library has museum passes available, allowing two free admissions per group.  That was a nice plus!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Visit in Illinois

 In January, we made our annual trip down to visit Kent's mom and Bud.  We always have so much fun just being together for a weekend. 

Kent's sitting with his nephew Jordan.  Kade really liked this guy, often still mentioning, "My cousin, my Jordan."  And when we went to a restaurant recently, he asked, "Will my Jordan cousin be there?"  So cute.

Kent's brother Kevin and wife Sheila and their family

Venita had some special time with Cody!

This vehicle was lots of fun and got driven around quite a bit.  The little boys kept asking for their turn and our girls were pretty nice to take them all around the farmland.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

DJ turned 9

The brothers get in on always it must involve tasting!

The birthday boy and friends celebrate in "firemen style"

DJ blows out all 9 afire.

Very fun gift from Grandpa Stacy and Grandma Carol

The cake...Playmobile pieces contributed by the boys, trees found in the cupboard from previous years, log cabin crafted by dad, design by mom.  So much fun.

Can it be?  Nine years old.  For some reason, this birthday has me feeling quite sentimental about DJ.  Every other birthday seemed right... still very little boy.  Nine just has the ring of growing up...of leaving little boyhood behind.  Don't get me wrong.  He's not all grown-up yet.  I savored a cuddling time today which he ended promptly after I kissed him too many times.  He was my first baby, even at 2.  My first little person to call me mom.  The first time I felt that unprecedented love that a mother feels for her child.  Even though I'm going to miss his littleness, I'm excited about watching him grow into a young man, with the prayer that he will walk in God's ways with a heart that draws near to our Father.

DJ Highlights

Likes to cook eggs for breakfast
Can't wait to go shooting at the indoor archery range
Asked Dad tonight if they could build a trap to catch a squirrel
Gets distracted from school work when using the dictionary :)
Knows more facts about animals than mom
Is memorizing James 1
Loves to keep recyclables even though mom tries to sneak them out of the house to the trash
Loves to chase his brothers and hold Cody
Is hearing mom read aloud a children's biography about Teddy Roosevelt
Is developing questions about his spiritual walk and future new birth
Is building a bike with Dad

Cody is 7 months

Cody's mom isn't keeping up on scrapbooking every month during his first year, so she's pretty glad for blogging to keep quick records of what he's doing.  Of course, Cody's not doing anything remarkably different from any other baby, but it's still remarkable!!  His mom and dad are enjoying each and every new stage, knowing that it goes ever so quickly.

- rolls over and over
-enjoys playing on the floor more than before
-ate bananas for the first time...and liked it
-cries when mom leaves the room
-still likes most people unless he's tired
-just moved from pack-and-play bassinet to crib
-put himself to sleep for the first time today!
-weighs around 18 lbs.
-has 2 bottom teeth
-isn't super cuddly and would rather look all around
-can sit up unsupported and rarely falls over anymore
-loves peek-a-boo
-still is our little "piggy" because he "snorts" a lot
-ends up in mom and dad's bed every night because that's the only way he'll sleep (oh well! it will pass)
-is a generally happy and content baby, as long as there's activity to watch (and there's usually plenty of it!)
-likes taking a bath with his brothers but is very scared of running water or the shower

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Make/watch a "Burp Rocket"

The video didn't post so I'll work on that tonight.  Sorry.  It's pretty cool to watch the rocket take off. :)
With just three simple supplies you can make this amazingly fun "rocket" with your children.  We learned about it last week from Aurora Lipper, a science lady who does stuff like this all the time.  You will be amazed!  Here's DJ's version.

Needed:  A white film canister (the lid needs to snap inside, so the black kind doesn't work)
               an effervescent tablet (like Alka-seltzer, but a generic brand is fine)