Saturday, May 26, 2012

Fort in the Backyard

Another day in that great week in March....

The children are always building forts. They throw blankets over tables and chairs. They cut up and stack cardboard boxes.  They climb on and move around wood on the wood pile. Whatever works! Children are just natural fort builders.

So it was not surprising to see them use the laundry baskets, toys from the yard and even the laundry on the line.

 They built quite a wall.
Diana has her weapon for defending the fort.

Douglas checks out the wood pile for other possible weapons.

 Charles takes aim at the enemy. Wesley has a weapon too.

 I love their imaginations and enjoyed watching them at play.

 Mom comes to take in the clothes and the children helped. It ended the fort play for this day...but there is always tomorrow.

Beautiful Day in March

In March we had a week of the most gorgeous summer weather. My son, Kyle, and I took the children to Hawthorne Park. This nice neighborhood park is about six blocks from our house so we go there often. It is a nice walk.

Kyle and Kimberly homeschool their boys Jacob, 5, and Aaron almost 3. The boys did some work quickly in the morning so they could come to our house and go to the park. The other four worked quickly on doing their schoolwork as well so they would be ready when the others arrived at our house. 

Off to Hawthorne Park for some physical education and fun.

 Kyle in the back, Douglas, Charles in the middle, Diana, Aaron, Jacob and Wesley in the front.

 Diana loves to swing and swing. She wants to "go faster" (meaning higher).

 Climbing is a popular activity of the children.

 I know we were only six blocks from home but bringing a lunch made it a very special trip to the park.

 I often have all six of the children for the day. It was fun to have Kyle with us today.

 Jacob loves to climb, too. They all shout "Take my picture, Grandma." when they think they are doing something cool.


 Diana and her best friend (also cousin) Aaron. Jacob in the back.

 They are all in such constant motion. The most I could catch was five of them on the slide at one time...LOL.

 Diana doesn't often have a little girl to play with. She and this little girl were attracted to each other quickly. Here Diana is showing her the scrape she got on her knee when she fell while running on the way to the park.

 Douglas sure needed a haircut....but I do love his curls.


 Some other children had brought some trucks and diggers and our children were quickly included in the play.

 Charles loves to pose.

Walking home. Diana and Aaron stick close together all the time. It is precious to see them like this. I pray they remain the close friends they are now.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Field Trip - Walk Around Janesville

We went for a LONG walk today and visited a few fun places.

 We set out with our backpacks and binoculars. Douglas, Charles, Diana and Wesley.

 First we stopped to introduce ourselves to a new neighbor and check out what he is doing.

 Mr. Mark tells us he is polishing up this hot rod for a neighbor who is disabled and wants to drive it in the Memorial Day Parade.

 Charles checks out the wheels.

 We heard some birds and are testing out our binoculars. Notice Charles; he always has his own way of doing things.

 We stopped at Old Fashion Bakery and each got a cookie. The children saw a kind they had not noticed before and all wanted one. I suggested we just get one to taste and see if they like it first. It was molasses. Charles and Wesley loved it and each got one. Diana got M & M. Douglas and I got our old favorites...peanut butter.

 The children wanted a picture of this fractured driveway.

 We had to check out this neat car. The children looked it over from bumper to bumper.

 We heard this cardinal and it took us a minute to find him posed high on this telephone wire.

 We headed down a street that had no sidewalks. So the children learned about walking to face traffic.

 They spotted this tree with a limb that extended across the street. They thought it was a perfect swing-hanging limb. But then Charles said "People probably wouldn't like that." Douglas responded, "The government probably wouldn't like it either." I guess he hears us talking too much about government interference in our lives.

 Hey! Isn't that the car we were just checking out????

 Shade! We needed some shade and a place to take a water break. That awning looks like just the spot.

 Water break and a peek inside Blackbridge Bowl (they were not yet opened for the day).

 Douglas noticed the street sign and informed us that the Box Car children's last name is Alden.

 Finally some shade again. This was a sunny street we came up. Time for another water break. The temperature was degrees cooler in the shade.

 The children see a tree and automatically begin to pose. First Douglas and then the others wanted their pictures taken too. They have become such willing subjects for a grandma who loves to take pictures.

 Diana is beginning to wear out. It has been a long walk already and it is 80 degrees and VERY sunny so it feels even hotter.

 Charles is always ready to pose.

 Wesley is another willing model. With his bright blue eyes and winning smile he is always a great picture.

 ANTS! Lots of them. Demands a closer look. Wesley called them a "gang." Charles promptly corrected him and said they are a "colony." Wesley said, "I think they are a family." Which lead to a discussion of the queen being the mother to them all.

 We have seen this interesting looking store many times, but never gone inside. The boys, Charles especially, have a love for knights and castles. So we decided today was the day we check it out.

 Right inside the door we were greeted by this full armor. The boys declared this a "great store."

 A second win for the store...WEAPONS! 

The store was filled with games. Many of the games I steered the children from. However, there was a section of very interesting games. Many board games with logic and history involved. Charles was especially interested in one called "Alexander the Great." He is currently reading a biography on him, so this was very exciting to him. I plan to get back here and check out some of these games to enhance our history. The games were not cheap...$30 to $50 for some that I was looking at.

 Finally ... our destination. Before we moved to our current house, we lived in apartments near this field. The boys loved to go here and just run and play in the open space. There is a natural large dip in the middle. They use to love rolling down the gentle slope. Douglas immediately said, "It use to be bigger." They didn't quite seem to understand that things didn't shrink, they have just grown a lot in the 3 1/2 years since they last played here.

 I use to have to lift them into this tree so they felt like they were "climbing" it. Now they really could climb in it and love doing so. Charles was up first.

 Douglas took Diana over to the dip and showed her how they use to roll down the slope. He was NOT impressed with his roll. I remember how the boys would roll and roll and roll...nice memory for me. I will have to look up some pictures from those days.

 With just Diana there, the slope does seem a bit larger.

 Douglas climbed the tree.

 Then we walked to the mall for a "necessity" stop. Then for a quick play on the rides. I never put any coins in these but the children enjoy them all the same. Charles in the helicopter.

 Wesley in the race car with Douglas in the coaster,

 Diana loved this cute little caterpillar. 

We then went into a new store called "Furry Babies." We could hear the puppies barking and, of course, the children had to check it out.

Next we were off to meet their mother at Pizza Hut for lunch. We were all ready for a cool place to sit and something iced to drink. The children spotted these little flowers along the sidewalk and before I could say, "Don't pick them," Douglas had already done so. He said it was for his mom. We got to Pizza Hut just before she did and he had it sitting at her spot when she arrived.

She gave us a ride part way home. She dropped us off at JoAnn Fabrics to pick up some ribbon for a project. We walked home the few blocks from there. We again talked to Mr. Mark. He was still working on the car but had made some progress. 

It was a fun time.