Sunday, October 28, 2012

Sea World

Mom and I took the kids to Sea World one day while Mike, Ang and Eloise went to Epcot.
What a fun day with my mom and kiddos!

We got a discount on our tickets since we bought them through the concierge at the Marriott.
It took us longer to get through the gate than we expected because we had packed our lunch and apparently some foods are allowed in but others are not. They would not allow us to bring in our sandwiches, but we could bring in yogurt, fruit and protein bars. We could bring in our water bottle and juice boxes, but not the straws. So we quickly re-planned our lunch and I ran back to the car with the forbidden food! We came back out to eat it later.

Once we had that all taken care of, we started our day with flamingos!
Aiden's favorite!
And dolphins!
Moriah's favorite!
There is an open dolphin tank and you are allowed to try and touch the dolphins as they swim by.
Emma was able to touch one, but the rest of us didn't get close enough!


And who are these people?
Oh, they are the ones that conquered the Journey to Atlantis ride!
Yeah, baby!
Although Aiden conquered it he was sure to tell the people working the ride that he did NOT want to do that again!
I tried to convince him not to go in the first place, but he was sure he wanted to do it!

Aiden really wanted to see sharks too, and they have a very cool shark exhibit.
At the end you walk through a tunnel that goes through the shark tank and you can view sharks swimming above you and all around you!
This shark picture is my favorite!
It makes me laugh!

We saw several shows that day, including the dolphin show and the sea lion show.
They were both amazing!!
Aiden especially liked the sea lion show because it had a pirate theme!
At the end of the sea lion show they brought out a walrus!

We ended our day at Shamu Stadium for the Shamu show!
Waiting for the show to begin!
If you sit in the first tier of seats you will get SOAKED!

If you plan on visiting Sea World:
Buy tickets online or from your concierge to save some money.
You may also be able to find coupons on Ebay.

The combo ticket for Sea World/Busch Gardens is a great deal if you want to visit both places.

Coolers (hard or soft) are not allowed in the park, but a small insulated bag is okay.

Take your own drinks and snacks in, but plan on leaving sandwiches in the car! You can come out and eat in the picnic area at lunch time.

They do sell souvenir cups that once you purchase you can refill all day for 99cents a refill.

If you have young children take them to Shamu's Happy Harbor near Shamu Stadium.
They have several rides and activities that all 3 of our kids enjoyed.


Fall Break 2012 Begins!

One reason we love homeschooling?
Vacation in October!
Destination: Orlando!
My sister and her husband graciously invited us to help them use some time share points that they had been given, and we graciously accepted!

We found an amazing deal on Allegiant air out of Grand Rapids and the kids were excited to be flying!
I was excited to NOT be driving!

The one downside was that Ryan had to stay back a few days to work. He joined us later. Something about not wanting to take off of work too long after being off for a year and a half...:)
Besides, he wasn't sure how much "vacation" he was able to handle just yet!

Aiden was super excited and as we were waiting for take off he shouted,
"So how much longer till we blast off?"
The people around us chuckled and I heard one woman say, "We're not in a rocket, just an airplane!"
Once the plane began to taxi down the runway he just giggled with excitement!
From the air he had an amazing view!!

In just a few hours we would be with my mom, my sister, my brother in law and my niece in Orlando!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Rome to the Reformation--Weeks 1-5

This school year we are using My Father's World Rome to the Reformation package.
This is our 4th year with MFW and we LOVE it!

We also use Horizons math,
Writing With Ease and First Language Lessons from Peace Hill Press,
and Rod and Staff grammar.

Here's some of what we have done in the first 5 wks.
 We have added The Roman Republic, Julius Casear, and Casear Augustus to our timeline.
The girls have added some Roman coloring pages to their notebook.
Emma's page on the founding of Rome.
We are studying the human body in science, and in the first week the girls drew a cell and labeled it.
The sense of taste. I love that Emma has added braces to her teeth.
One of Moriah's first math tests!
The girls have been learning about showing perspective in drawing.
And they made cute little clay piggies for a craft!

Henry Ford/Greenfield Village

This summer we planned a visit to the Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village.
This has been on my list of places to visit for awhile now and we were able to go with our cousins which made the trip even more special!

We went to The Henry Ford Museum on Saturday. We packed a lunch and left our house early in the morning. We ate our lunch just before going in hoping that would hold us over until we went through the special Titanic exhibit that was there. The Titanic exhibit was well done and the girls enjoyed it. Since then Aiden has developed an interest in the Titanic as well. I have heard him tell several people about the Titanic, the ship that "got sunked."  He has also repeatedly asked us questions such as:
"Now why did the Titanic sink?"
"Why didn't they move away from the iceberg?"

The Museum is HUGE and has some amazing pieces like Abraham Lincoln's rocking chair from Ford's Theatre, The Dymaxion House, Rosa Park's bus, steam locomotives, some presidential limousines and an Oscar Mayer wienermobile!

The one thing in the Museum we did not see was Thomas Edison's last breath. We thought it was in Greenfield Village, in Edison's laboratory. Emma has been fascinated by the fact of the great inventor's last breath being preserved since she read it in a book. Our trip meant she would finally see this last breath! However, the next day, when we visited the Village we found out it was, in fact, in the Museum. We'll have to find it on our next visit!

This picture cracks me up!
I tried several times to get a good one of all the kids, and this is the best one!

One permanent exhibit that we went through was "Driving America," which is a history of vehicles and there are several cars on display from the earliest automobiles to a modern version of the Ford Explorer.
While there, Moriah took a quiz to find out what kind of car she would be and the car that fit her was the 1955 Roadster.
I only saw her answer one question on the quiz which was:
You are in a minor fender bender with another person. What do you do?
The answer she chose was, "Ooops! Maybe no one will notice!"

This isn't the exact Roadster that was on display, but this one looks similar!
Looks like Moriah, doesn't it?

We spent Sunday at Greenfield Village and the first thing we as we came in was the steam engine train....Aiden's favorite part of the day!
The Village is home to The Wright Brothers Cycle Shop and Home.
We heard the Wright Brothers, and their sister, tell about their first flight.
We stopped for a music show and a snack.
We were able to see some Old Tyme Baseball!
Thomas Edison's laboratory....this is where his last breath is NOT kept. But his chair his here! It is in the far right of this picture. The guide told us this is where Mr. Edison's chair usually was. Mr. Ford wanted it to be kept in that place so he had it nailed down to the floor.
There was a special War of 1812 muster this weekend. The army was looking for recruits and the kids decided to leave their jobs and enlist.
Of course once they enlisted they had to pass a medical examination to be sure they were fit for the army.
The doctor was sure to ask them if they have had small pox. Moriah realized that it would mean a vaccination for her if she had not so she decided to go with "Yes, I have."
The doctor was excellent and he spent quite a bit of time explaining how he would handle specific medical situations in his time. He even had some leeches with him to show the kids!
The sweetest soldiers there!!

If you have been thinking about visiting The Henry Ford and Greenfield Village our kids say DO IT!
It makes American history come alive, and
it is an inspiring showcase of American ingenuity and innovations.
And, unlike us, you could see Thomas Edison's last breath!


Friday, October 12, 2012

The County Fair

Moriah came to me one day this summer and said "Grandma and I have set a goal of going to the county fair every day this year."
That's our Moriah! She's an ambitious one!

Later I mentioned to Ryan that we may want to clarify our idea of "setting goals" with the girls; and then I listened to the girls share their plan of what they would see on each day of the week. After they finished telling me their plan Moriah said, "The best thing about going everyday is that I don't have to pick only ONE treat! I can get one everyday!"
Ahhhh, the real reason behind that ambitious goal!
That's my girl!

When fair week arrived they were dedicated to accomplish what they had set out to do and they even let their brother join them for a day or two! I'm not sure who was more excited, the girls or Grandma as they set out each day!