Sunday, October 7, 2012

Fire Safety

Check that off the list. Fire safety is one of the things that evaluators look for in the portfolio. Just that you did something to teach fire safety.

One year I printed some pages off the internet and we colored and talked about them.

One year I picked up some brochures and papers and even some fire hats when I voted at the fire station.

Last year we had the local fire company come to Classical Conversations. We had a presentation on fire safety and the kids were able to climb on the truck.

I like to find something new or different each year so we really do get to talk about it and learn something. The fire house was having an open house today so we went.

Some of the equipment was there so the kids could climb in and of course we got pictures. The fire truck was out on a call.

They had a demonstration on a cooking fire. They stated that most fires begin in the kitchen. First of all, the fireman put on his gear. I remember last year the fireman talking about how it is just the fireman inside and he wanted the children not to be scared seeing all the gear especially if they are ever in an emergency. Today, they showed how they put the gear on and allowed the kids to touch it and ask questions.

Then they had some oil on the stove, they lit it and the fireman demonstrated how to put the fire out -- use either a lid or a flat pan, turn off the heat and let it cool. They showed what happens if you put water on the fire -- more fire. I thought it was a great visual for the kids to see and we did talk about that part of how to be safe.

We had a fun outing and now I can check off that we covered fire safety.

Chess Tournament

J played in his third beginner's chess tournament today. The local chess program has beginners tournaments once a month to give kids experience in tournament play. They can play in three and then they need to move to another tournament. J got 2nd place for his age group. He won three of the four games and said the boy that beat him in the one game had a much higher rating. He has managed to get three trophies while we are here.

Friday, October 5, 2012

I give my children choices.

"Do you want to wear this dress or this dress?" They are different one is a 6 and the other a 6X. When I gave Miss K that choice one day, she told me, "matchy, match". I guess she caught on to that one.

One of the things that I have enjoyed here are the thrift stores. I have gotten amazing deals on dresses for Miss K. Yes, I did have the brown floral and then found it at the thrift store and so I bought another one -- maybe I should call it back-up.

I realized that the Lands End dresses or dresses like this are great -- it makes laundry easy -- one thing to wash and no pants in dark and shirt in whites and one was washed and the other not. These are easy for potty training - no zippers, no buttons. We add leggings and they are a bit warmer.

Thanks to the thrift stores here Miss K has a closet full of dresses.

When I first started going to the thrift stores, it seemed that I found the size she is currently wearing and long sleeve. I bought them and realized I have enough for now. I have since been able to find the larger sizes and a mix of long and short sleeve. I have thankful for this provision, God is good in providing for our needs. I might have enough clothing for the next few years.

Horseback riding in the west

One of the malls near where we are staying has the ride for just 25 cents. I will admit that normally I avoid these so maybe all of them are 25 cents and I don't know it. Miss K liked the horse. I remember when I was growing up they would have them outside K-Mart or other stores like that. I decided for 25 cents she could have a horse ride.

There are more than just horse rides there. She then took off into outer space for about a minute.

The little Merry Go Round was a good deal -- three horses so three kids could ride for 25 cents.

After those three rides, there were no more quarters in my pocket. So we had to end the fun and do some shopping.

Annual Water Fight

Maka known as the party we crashed. We normally are not party crashers. I think this was the first time that we have done it. I will say the kids and daddy loved the party. We were visiting friends and they told us that the only thing they had that afternoon was the Annual Water Fight at the neighbors. We had about 30 minutes that we were able to attend and then we had another place that we had to be.

Mama had also forgotten to pack swimsuits so it was a clothing event.

Miss K stayed around the pool and liked holding the hose. That gave her a sense of power and a bit of protection.

The neighbor had water guns that she has collected over the years. I think this was the 7th annual water fight. There was a kiddy pool there to use for filling up, some buckets and a fort.

The fort was a great place to stand and take aim but you did need to make sure that you have enough water. 

Daddy watched for a bit and then he decided it looked like fun.

There was a dry zone where you were able to sit and watch without fear of getting wet. It was a fun party to crash and an idea for a fun summer event.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Salmon Hatchery

We took a field trip today the Salmon Hatchery. It is salmon season and so the best time of the year to go. This weekend is Salmon Days but I don't want to fight the crowd for a spot on the bridge. It was very informative. We didn't have a tour but there were enough people around ready to show us things and explain things that we were able to learn quite a bit.

Beginning in late August to mid November the salmon begin to return to the hatchery. They travel through the Ballard Locks, Lake Union, Lake Washington, a stream to Lake Sammamish and then into the creek leading to the fish hatchery. One interesting thing that I learned is that it is believed that smell is what guides the fish back to where they were spawned.

They were waiting for the gate to be opened to they could go up the fish ladder (fish ladders are things that Civil Engineers here will design -- my husband is willing to show you the one that he designed). 

We learned that one of the educational things that was happening today was spawning. We continued that discussion at dinner. Most of the salmon here are Coho or Chinook.

We were able to see a male up close and see the various insides -- the heart, spleen, liver, etc. We saw them squeeze the milt and collect it for using in the spawning.

Then we saw the females and the eggs that were taken. Each female Coho has approximately 2,500 eggs while the Chinook females typically produce around 4,500 eggs per fish. The statistics are that only two fish will return and spawn successfully. J said it looked like caviar.

The kids were able to touch a salmon or two. J said he touched the eye. K said they were dead.


We enjoyed just standing at the bridge and watching the fish jump. They can jump three to five feet but the water was a bit too swallow for that high of jumping. The Coho can jump up to 10 feet.

I am so glad that I took the kids to see this. It is interesting to see what Miss K learns and what she tells about her trip. We enjoyed our time and it is not something that we are able to do on the East Coast. Together we marveled at how God has designed the salmon.


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