C is for… #atozchallenge

C

is for Crash. Of course. But it’s not what you think. This part is not for the kid who attempts to run our lives. It’s not for Mr. Attitude. Nor is for Mr. Tenderheart.

 

Nope this morning it’s for this game called “Crash”. Fitting name, actually.

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We popped into a Toys R Us one day to find a fun family game to play. This is what we came out with. As you can see from the box it’s a tower game. It resembles Jenga in the sense that you take pieces from the middle and stack it on the top. The difference is that you have to roll a die to determine what color you have have remove. Bang’s favorite color to roll is black.

Black means you do nothing.

That’s everyone’s favorite color to roll. If you don’t have to remove a column then there’s no chance you’ll be the one who topples the tower.

Here’s the gist:
Each white ring as space for 10 columns. To start you build the tower 6 levels high. Then your youngest starts the game by rolling. Remove the color column and add it the top. This continues until all 10 spaces are filled on the top at which point you add another white ring and continue playing. We’ve never fully filled the 5 extra rings there are to add. We’ve built it high enough to add the 5th, but we didn’t get it filled. Here, check it out:

C

is also for Crash, our 8 year old boy wonder. Because, boy does he make us wonder. He’s the creator of his YouTube channel, Crash’s Corner where he likes to create Lego videos. His curiosity rivals that of a little monkey named George. His questions are relentless, amazing, and show that he really is a thinker. Even if he does think of doing some really dumb stuff. He provides as much comic relief to our life as his little brother. Hiding a Nerf gun behind his back, he comes to me smiling and says, “I’m no handed, Dad.” I knew what he meant but I just had to ask him, “You mean unarmed?” He’s stubborn, full of attitude and hates math and cleaning. But he’s our tenderheart, our snuggler, and hugger. He’s also protective of his little brother. He’s the only who is allowed to pick on his baby brother. He’s creative, curious, and a creator of calamity.

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B is for… #atozchallenge

B

is for bowling. We went bowling before supper yesterday evening. Last year when we went it was Cosmic. The regular lights were off and the black lights were on. The kids were amazed, of course. And had a blast.

This year, since we went before supper instead of after, it wasn’t cosmic. But it was still just as exciting.

The thing is, especially if you’re reading this in the States, the pins here are wickedly different. Everyone knows what a typical bowling pin looks like – fat bottom, skinny neck and head on top. Here in Canada it’s called candle pin bowling. The pins resemble, you guessed it, candles. Tall. Skinny. And the ball is about the size of a softball. Yes, you still launch it by rolling it underhand. But you get 3 rolls here and you don’t clear the knocked down pins between rolls! You get to use the pins you knock down to knock down other pins. That didn’t matter, though. It didn’t help me any.

Crash still won.

Bang had a blast for one game then was done. DW and I were going to let Crash and Bang bowl a game by themselves, but Bang bowed out. He’d met his bowling quota. So DW and I took turns taking Bang’s turn and play again Crash.

Crash still won.

B
is also for Bang. He is our 4 year old heathen. He frustrates us to no end with his stubbornness. He also provides plenty of comedic relief. Today we climbed “Jacob’s Ladder” – an incredibly long set of stairs along a hiking trail. At the top he looks over the edge and hollers, “Look at this view! Jesus we’re up high!”. While in the pool, he swam over to DW and says, “Mom! Feel my shorts. They’re drenched!” She responds with, “Yeah. That’s what happens when you’re in the pool.” He’s our buddy, our bud with a beautiful soul with a bad streak. He might be bothersome, but he’s still the best baby brother.

jacob's ladder

Jacob’s Ladder

Whatever Snow Does In Summer

I’m sure we’re all familiar with that snowman song. Not Frosty. The other one.

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♪ ♪ I’ll be doing whatever snowmen do in summer ♪ ♪

A couple weeks ago I wrote this post about an awesome igloo we spent two days constructing. It fit 7 kids comfortably. It was tall enough to stand up in, too. It was the igloo that would withstand Mother Nature until she unleashed her spring thaw in March.

She laughed at us. Eight days later the roof collapsed in 7 (42) degree weather and rain. To our credit, this one lasted eight days longer than the one we built last year. That one collapsed in less time than it took to build. Again, thanks to the rain. Rain in January? In Canada? Really weird.

But, like Mother Teresa said, “If you build an igloo, it will get rained on and collapse. Build anyway.” (or something to that effect*)

It stood like a sentinel day and night. Softening a bit in the sun and freezing again by night. Until Mother Nature brought in that 7 degrees. I knew it was coming so I attempted to build up the south wall – the wall that received sunlight all day. What I didn’t know was that the temps didn’t drop at night. Unusual. It was a steady 7 degrees for two and half days. AND two nights!

Guess which part collapsed. The south wall. Technically, it was the upper part of the south facing wall and roof that fell in, and the tunnel door.

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Here’s our happy igloo all finished.

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Here’s our sad igloo 8 days later.

They are calling for two more 7 degree days this week. It won’t look like this after tomorrow. We built it anyway. Rebuilding will be moot. More like futile.

It was a glorious igloo. We had high hopes for it. However, Mother Nature worked against us. She’s so temperamental lately.

It was so quiet in there! Snow is an awesome insulator, by the way. Even compacted into a snowball, there’s still a lot of air in there.

Did you know it takes about 100 droplets of water to make a snowflake?
Did you know that snowflakes typically have six sides?
Do you know who Wilson Bentley is? Born in 1865, he is one of the first known photographers of snowflakes.

We’re not going to let this dampen our spirits (just our gloves, snow pants, and socks)! There’s still the steepest hill in town. Even Bang was having a blast on today. That is, until he got tired of walking back up. He wanted pulled back up hill on his sled. Lazy arse thought he was a king!

Crash got his snowboard out and acted out his nickname. I acted out his nickname, too. Standing on a board we’re not attached to and picking up serious speed down a steep hill is a perfect formula for some good crashes. UnFortunately, there is no video of said crashes. Especially of that one time I crashed into DW at the bottom of the hill. Sorry hon! (♥ That just proves how strongly attracted I am to her ♥)

Mother Nature may have collapsed our igloo, but she didn’t melt our enthusiasm for fun!

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Thank you Bill Watterson for my all time favorite. We have this print hanging at our house.


 

*Sidenote: It wasn’t Mother Teresa who wrote “The Paradoxical Commandments”. Keith Kent did in 1965 and it goes as such: 

People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered.
Love them anyway.

If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives.
Do good anyway.

If you are successful, you will win false friends and true enemies.
Succeed anyway.

The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.

Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable.
Be honest and frank anyway.

The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds.
Think big anyway.

People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs.
Fight for a few underdogs anyway.

What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight.
Build anyway.

People really need help but may attack you if you do help them.
Help people anyway.

Give the world the best you have and you’ll get kicked in the teeth.
Give the world the best you have anyway.

 

Happy Mocha Monday

If we were relaxing having a mocha, or tea, or coffee, or hot chocolate, or a glass of wine…

I would be telling you all about our adventure on Saturday to Riverbreeze Corn Maze. Though I have been in hundreds of cornfields before, I’d never been in a corn maze. First, we found a spot to park. It really wasn’t that difficult, we were just in the overflow parking lot and had to walk a bit. We didn’t have to park in overflow, it was just the first parking lot we found for the farm and we didn’t know there was a closer one.

Once in, we found out that “Farmer Joe” had gone missing and we were going to have to find him, find out which animal took him, and find out with what weapon the accused wielded. So off we went into the maze. Fortunately, they gave us map. DW let me be in charge of that. She knew full well we’d get lost, but I was determined to prove her wrong.

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There were 7 suspects and 6 stations with picture puzzles to be solved to let you know which animal didn’t kidnap Farmer Joe. I got us all the way to station number 5 without getting lost. Naturally, and not to disappoint, we had no idea where we were or how to get to number 6. After a bit of walking, we got it and solved the mystery.

Bang got tired of the maze pretty quickly. All he wanted to do was carry a stalk around like a sword. Unfortunately, he ended up with a leaf cut (very much like a paper cut) on his hand. Nothing a couple band-aids couldn’t take care of.

After we completed the maze, we had our picture taken on a few attractions. One was a HUGE chair. The seat was wide enough for both DW and I sit “comfortably” on while Crash and Bang sat on the arms. Then there was “stick your face in the hole” boards. DW was a cute, fluffy sheep. Crash was a horse. Bang was a pig. I was an ass donkey. The boys played with the tetherball, then from there it was on the bouncy pillow. They had been on one of these on a camping trip and they loved it. It was no different on Saturday.

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See the mud on Bang? He fell down in the maze. Knew that would happen.

Then we got see the pig race. The littlest piggy, Wilbur, won. They all got Oreos. I nearly jumped in the pen to steal the Oreos, but I refrained. Mmmmm Oreos! From there we slid down the Shotgun Slide. I’m assuming it’s so named because the kids are shot out the end at about 1300 feet per second. At least it seemed that fast. Of course, they slid down no less than 10 times. I only went once.

You can hear Crash and Bang laughing and screaming at the end of it. They thought it was great.

After that, the boys went on a tractor train ride pulled by a Gator. Upon their return from the train ride there was a large tractor pulling two “hay wagons” (there was no hay, but there was a bench for us all sit on). This tractor ride took us to a pumpkin patch.

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I may have been pretending to drop a rather large pumpkin on DW’s head to get them to laugh like this. Thankfully, I didn’t really drop it on her head. I’m sure she would have shoved that pumpkin so far up my you-know-what that I would have been spitting seeds for days.

Afterward, Crash got to shoot some paintballs at some pots and pans. He thought that was great. Then I told him I used to have a paintball gun of my own, once upon a time. I’ve been in my share of paintball wars.

From there we went to the petting area. They had bunnies, goats, sheep, a donkey and a cow. One stall of the stable was set up as a wild west jail cell. There was an area cut out in the corn field to play laser tag using giant, round hay bales to hide behind. Lastly, we made our way back to the bouncy pillow for one more jump before heading out for supper.

We were there for about 4 hours total and we had managed to play on everything, do everything there was to do. Overall, Crash and Bang had a blast. Naturally, there were areas and times when one was having more fun than the other. Or mom and dad were having more fun than the kids.

Sunday we cleaned house. Crash and Bang were wishing we were back at the farm.

What did you do this weekend?