Friday, August 31, 2012

Pomona Grange Park

We were doing some geocaching last weekend, surprise!  We visited this park just over the county line.  There were some amazing nurse trees here.  The cache we were seeking was actually called XXL Nurses. The nurse tree below looks like it has a face. 

It was logged as the slots are where the loggers put planks to saw the tree down.  The park had a nice nature path.  It is definitely worth checking out if you are in the area.  It is also right next to a fishery. We also stumbled across a letterbox here as well.
Chuckles and #1 Son

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Soda Bottle Rocket Launcher

close-up of rocket
My Dad designed this amazing 2 liter Soda Bottle Water Air Pump Rocket Launcher while we were in Colorado.  He wanted to shoot it off with the grandkids.  What am I saying?  HE WANTED TO SHOOT IT OFF!  My Dad is just a big kid.  Love you, Dad!

If you want to be cool like my Dad, here are some directions on how to make one similar to my Dad's Soda Bottle Rocket Launcher. All kidding aside, this was really neat and pretty inexpensive to make. It also flew pretty far and high too.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

boys aviation/army room in progress.

My youngest requested that the trains be gone from his room.  I forgot to take a "before" picture.  He wanted a little more grown up room.  As I was packing up all the train stuff, I asked him what he would like in his room.  He said helicopters.  So, I shopped the house. My goal was to spend as little as possible.  This is what I came up with so far. Once I actually got the room cleaned up and cleared of train stuff, I have mainly been focusing on these shelves hung next to the window. The Giant Man Child made the shelves for the trains but they work great for displaying stuff.

 Both my husband and myself are Army Veterans.  My hubby used to be a airframe mechanic in the Army (68G).  He worked on the airframe of helicopters.  So, we had some helicopter stuff that people had given us as gifts or we had collected. We have several veterans in our family and I thought it would be fun to include some pictures. I thought I would enlarge several or make smaller of these pictures.

There is still a lot to do to get this up to snuff.  Some holes in the wall to patch.  Some artwork would be really great. I thought an Uncle Sam Wants You sign would be cute.  I have been saving my swagbucks.  I don't want to invest much as interests around here change rather quickly. I also found a couple copies of vintage WWII Army Aviation posters that would work great in here.  They are very reasonable so I will probably get those to. 

Friday, August 24, 2012

Travel Race Update #5

This will be the last update before the final results are tabulated on September 3rd.  A winner will be crowned and awarded a blizzard of their choice.  Of course, the travel racers will keep racing. 

Statistics as of  8/24/12

Crazy                   2919 miles         Arizona
Shrek                   1594 miles         Texas
Mrs Honeypot       189 miles          Washington
Ace                        167 miles          British Columbia, Canada

Hopefully the upcoming Holiday Weekend will result in a surge of miles for some our racers.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Back to School Pictures

I love a good back to school photo.  I will have a 4th grader and a 9th grader this year. We are still 2 weeks out from school but I think we are the last people to start school. My usual location is the front steps.  Here is a few samples of our back to school photos.

There is a lot of different ideas floating around on blogs on 1st day school photos.  Hopefully they will inspire you.

Cleverly Inspired
All for the Boys

I might do things a little differently.  We shall see if my models are cooperative.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Winding Down

pencil vase with home grown sunflowers
Our summer is winding down.  We have 2 weeks before school starts.  This is when time both speeds up and slows down depending on the time of day.  I love being home with my kids.  I am so lucky that my husband's job allows me this privilege.  BUT I have been with my kids constantly with no real break every single day for basically the whole summer.  I just want to talk with some adults - snicker. This also the point in the year where I start to feel like a school supply hoarder. 
school supply hoard
What is left on the summer to do list is just a short list of activities, some doctors appointments, shoe shopping, and general get back to a better routine. Anyone else feel my pain?  Did I mention that the High School Band is practicing at the neighborhood elementary school?  Yes, the same one that my backyard faces.  The drummers found it necessary to practice RIGHT next to the fence.  My whole house was vibrating.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Project Life Update

I am still at it.  More details about project life.  I am doing the ultra budget version. I am always a little behind but I manage to catch up fairly easily.  Just a sampling of my pages. I am using baseball card dividers. I haven't done every week and I am OK with that.  I do have pages that don't have stuff in every pocket of the protector.  I am OK with that too.  Part of the process of this for me is that I am not over complicating this.  I get done what I get done.  I think that has really freed me up to tell my little stories and not worry about the stories I am not telling. 

Chuckles in the local paper

Friday, August 17, 2012

History Colorado Center

Chuckles, #1 Son, Fast Eddy, Finder Boy
This is where I pimp out my blog and become a unauthorized ad for the History Colorado Center.  This revamped center has been reopened since April.  I highly recommend this if you are in Colorado and in the Denver area. We went here with our entire extended family.  IT was amazing.   There was a lot of hands on activities.  The had the town of Keota set up with various activities-Model-T driving, general store, egg collecting, cow milking, slide from the haybarn etc.
Chuckles milking the cow
You could merge your face with graduate from Keota.  Here is Chuckles Keota yearbook picture.

They had a special exhibit there as well, LEGOrado.

 Our Lego Nut simply went crazy over that.  The adults loved the humor in the exhibit.  It was well done.  The ghosts in the ghost town.  I especially liked that they were lined up to use the Honeypot.

The cow being sucked up the UFO. 

There was just so much to be seen. This is definately a place that needs to be revisited. We also got to go in a mine and set explosives, practice ski jumping, visit a cabin in a Japanese Internment Camp.  I am just touching the surface of what is here.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Photo App Experiment

I have been experimenting with a photo application for my android phone called Photo Comics. I was inspired by All for the Boys post on the photo app halftone for the I-Phone.  I wasn't able to find the same app for the Android but Photo Comics comes close. Chuckles had a good time experimenting with the app too.

Comic done by Chuckles
Rockets Galore


Cape Crusader

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Thompson's Mills State Heritage Site

We had a marathon trip to Oregon this past weekend. The Giant Man Child had a shooting match outside Shedd, Oregon. Meanwhile, the kiddos and I went and spent some time at Thompson's Mills.  It was a old flour mill. 

The volunteer hosts were fabulous and gave us and a group of bicyclists a really great tour.  The mill was first used as flour mill then for animal feed and lastly a turbine was added to generate electricity.  Now it is just a heritage site.  The kids loved that they were able to touch so many things.  They got to grind grain too. The kids attempted to feed the chickens.  That consisted of one dumping the whole bag of feed and the other complaining that he didn't get a chance to feed the chickens. It obvious that these kids are city kids.
feeding chickens in the two man wrecking crew style

Monday, August 13, 2012

Travel Racer Update #4

For all of you following are travel bug race, here is the update.  For more details about our race click here

Crazy                         2919 miles    Arizona
Shrek                         1273 miles    New Mexico
Ace                              167 miles    British Columbia, Canada
Ms Honeypot                78 miles     British Columbia, Canada

The Giant Man Child's racer jumped ahead to New Mexico.  He had been dead last for a couple of weeks. The summer is winding down and I am impressed that all our travel racers have headed to so many different locations.  I can't believe I am in last place.  It figures since I arranged this whole race.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Geocaching Colorado Style

We did quite a bit of geocaching in Colorado. We also encountered some unique obstacles such as WASPS, prickly pear cactus, rock piles, bear scat, and rattle snakes. Both the Giant Man Child and I got stung by wasps.  I actually had a slight reaction. My youngest nephew came with us quite a bit and we nick named him Finder Boy. There were a couple of caches that stood out.  The Giant Man Child's favorite cache was located in the Big Thompson Canyon. It was called, " Lord Grayson -The Mighty Buck Hunter."  
View from the Cache Site in the Big Thompson Canyon
Isn't the view fantastic. By the way, this is where I sat on the prickly pear. My choice of favorite cache wasn't the fanciest cache but I really enjoyed the story that came with it- Fort Junction.  It brought you to a forgotten historical marker in a park and ride lot. I think this really embodies what geocaching is about.
Fort Junction Marker
I didn't quite believe that my husband I saw bear scat but low and behold an article with a bear appeared in the Loveland Reporter Herald in the same park we were in.

It seems that geocachers in Colorado have a penance for rock piles for hides.  So imagine our surprise when we heard a rattlesnake. We quickly decided to abandon that site.  Adding to our fear was an encounter at a local candy shop, where the owner was talking about how yesterday her son had been bitten by a rattlesnake and was in the hospital.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Utility Box Art

Postcards from Loveland

On our vacation, we saw some great art work on utility boxes in Loveland, Colorado. We went out hunting utility box art with my sister and nephew.  Loveland is well known for it's public art installations in the form of sculptures. The art scene is alive and well here. On previous visits we spent a lot of time looking at the sculptures but this time we were on the hunt for utility box art. This is part of the Transformation Project that was created to showcase Northern Colorado painters.  The Loveland Art in Places picks a geographical location which artists transform utility boxes in works of art. There are well over 40 utility boxes that have been turned into works of art.

Tango by Ron McDowell
Impressionistic Loveland by Diane Roeder
Circuit and Connections by Jeannie Essling
My favorite box was this Zen Tangle box called  Deluge by Thomas Studholme . 

I love how on one side of the box there are angels in the design.  This wasn't apparent to me by just driving by.

There is also this house drawn on top.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Our Colorado Vacation

Colorado History Center
I have been on a blogging hiatus.  We have been vacationing in Colorado.  Vacation is good for the soul. I highly suggest them for EVERYONE! There are a lot of stories to tell you.  You know us and adventures. There are a couple indepth posts I hope to write but I wanted to give you a little taste of our adventures. We spent the majority of our time in Loveland, CO but we made it to Ft Collins, Estes Park, Rocky Mtn Park, and Denver.   We celebrated my Mom's Birthday and #1 Son's Birthday.
Hot Balloon Launch
Utility Box Art
Estes Park - Cousins Mini Golf

#1 Son on Rock in Big Thompson River
Clouds Colorado
New Beligium Brewery
#1 Son, Chuckles, and Finder Boy

Friday, August 3, 2012