Wintering the “Polar Vortex”

1-12-2014 snow cave and friends (52c)

So the winter days drag on and on and on…  We’ve had many a quiet home day, and it seemed the entire month of January off from school.  We’ve made our share of delightful winter crafts, built a huge snow cave in the court for the boys and all their friends to fit in… at the same time!  We’ve been sledding.  We’ve been swimming (indoors, of course)  We’ve been hiding in the basement with the space heater on, playing a wide assortment of trains, Legos, camping, and more trains, Legos and camping.  We’ve rearranged the basement and played more trains, Legos and camping…

4-11-2014 aidans math book homeschool (2)

Aidan’s completed his Kindergarten math book and is so proud of himself, AND… he’s reading all sorts of little things here and there!  Woot woot for you, Aidan!  We’ve also done a mini-unit on music / musical instruments that timed amazingly well with a free UofM Symphony Orchestra concert down at Hill Auditorium the boys could preview (we just stayed for the first part).  And so now we’re starting to go stir crazy because the snow that arrived in December has barely moved, with no spring in sight.  So this last weekend we took a fancy day out on the town for a couple of super-cool excursions.

1-29-2014 hill auditorium (3)

2-23-2014 at the train show (41)

At the last minute on Sunday we munched an early lunch and headed to Novi for The Great Train Expo.  Three very excited little boys meet thousands of square feet of Train stuff- model trains to watch and wonder, shops selling gadgets for tracks and set-ups, lego train worlds, Thomas train-worlds (and one you can ride!), Trains in all gauges and sizes– perfect replicas of the ones they’ve read about and watched about.  They had a grand time, and perhaps the craziest surprise of all (Muma really had no idea what to expect), a musical show and meet & greet with train guru Choo-Choo-Bob in person, with his sidekicks, Engineer Paul and Engineer Emily.  Alex and Aidan were absolutely amazed-  “They’re real people!” exclaimed Alexander.  Grandpa and Grandma J. had sent us a couple of their DVD’s (It’s a Minnesota based show) a couple of years ago for Christmas that Alex especially has enjoyed.  Now they have a signed calendar and bookmark.  Too too fun :).




So we managed to squeeze in this delightful train show stop in the early afternoon before we dropped baby off at Nana’s for some playtime and the big brothers and Muma headed to meet Papa for some good ole family Ice Skatin’ that we’d originally planned as our day’s event.  We’d been watching the Olympics for about a week.  Aidan had been especially enamored with the bobsledders, but they both were just perplexed at these ice skating people.  “How do they float around like that?” Alex would ask.  “How do they jump and spin so fast?” more logistical curiosity than amazement.  We’d been talking to them all week about hard work, and training to do hard things.  And it just so happened that the local place we were looking at going happens to be the training rink for the American and Canadian gold and sliver medalists in Ice dancing.  Why would we go anywhere else?

2-23-2014 ice_skating (2e)

(this was an unfinished blog entry… recently posted “as is” 2/2016)