Thursday, October 25, 2012

Fall Break 2012

My kids have an abnormally long fall break since their school schedule is modified year round. That meant two weeks to fill with super fun activities. In years past, we've usually spent an extended weekend in San Diego--Sea World, Disneyland, the beach, etc. It's such a fun place. However, Derek just got handed a bunch of work on a new case, so we needed to stay in town. I racked my brain for some fun ideas. I wanted to do one activity every day during the week. Here's what we did (I didn't actually do an activity every day, but pretty close!):
We read The Eleventh Hour by Graeme Base. It's a mystery novel that has everything explained in a sealed portion at the end. There is a story you read and then you go back through trying to put together clues that are revealed on every page. My kids really enjoyed this and I did too. I think my kids are actually more diligent than I am at trying to piece the mystery together. I was ready to cheat and look much sooner than they were.
The next day we sang some songs from a book about the Constitution of the United States. There were some pictures to go along with the songs, but we learned a little bit about George Washington and the flag and some other patriotic stuff. If I had really been a great mom, I would've had us do a red, white and blue craft and had a matching food spread to dine on, but we just sang songs. (Baby steps...)
The next day we went to Peter Piper Pizza. The kids had certificates for free tokens and free pizzas from the summer library program. I was expecting a dirty place with bored teenage workers. It was completely the opposite. The service was amazing, the store was clean and we had a lot of fun. I discovered that I really like to play the Let's Make a Deal videogame. I have a hard time giving in--I'm always hoping my case has a bazillion tickets!

Madi and Owen have been best friends and betrothed for many years now. 

The following day we went to the train park in Scottsdale with our friends the Russells. It is a really cool park with several play areas for the kids not to mention the train that you get to ride. Although there was one wild west structure that I'm certain is not up to code. The kids can play all over the roof and the ledge around the structure is only about a foot high. Being the good mom I am, I let my kids play on it. Following an exhausting train park visit, we went to The Sugar Bowl in Scottsdale. I had never been, but I loved it! Their portions of ice cream were HUGE and it was really yummy too. The kids had a blast.

The apples one week later. Ryanna's got mold, so we had to toss it, I graciously gave her mine. What a great mom!

We had an "apple day" where the kids and I peeled apples and carved faces in them to allow them to age into the wrinkly old witch type faces. That night we made caramel apples to eat.
One day we did a scooter ride through the neighborhood.
We also had a baking day where we made pumpkin and chocolate chip muffins.

We visited the huge Bass Pro Shop and fed the trout and explored the store. The kids loved seeing the huge mounted animals (Elk, deer, bear and small stuff like coyotes and snakes, etc). Caleb loved climbing on the ATV they had on display. Owen found some pop guns that made a great noise when you shot out the attached piece. We also rode the elevator which took us behind the huge fish tank and had a great time. When we left, Owen asked, "Mom, how much did that awesome place cost?" He was shocked that it was free!

Owen's in there...somewhere...

There's Eli in flight!

Owen REALLY wanted to ring that bell. 

We hit a new pumpkin patch called Vertuccio Farms with our friends the Kimballs. They had a train to ride, pumpkins to see, turkeys, ducks, pigs, cow, mules, the largest bouncy structure I've ever seen and one of those huge corn mazes that is a fun pattern from the sky. Ryanna and Quinn went to do the huge corn maze, but it was a bit too hot (90 something degrees), so they quit after a while. The boys did smaller mazes made out of hay bales. There were also strong man bell ringing things and bean bag tosses which my kids liked. And, little go cart things to ride. After we left we went to Bahama Bucks which the kids loved!
We had a park day where we got together with lots of friends from the ward.

He's making his mean face for the camera. 

What? Don't you carve without a shirt on?

My first attempt to carve a pattern on a pumpkin. Let's just say there were some complications.

It looked great for one full day!

Caleb's shirt was actually one we made when Eli was less than a month old. Amazing how fast the time goes.

And, lastly we carved a real pumpkin and we made our annual Halloween shirts--which the decals are falling right off!!! Except Ryanna's. Oh well, it's tradition!


rachel said...

Yippee! Happy Fall Break. You all were very busy with some awesome memory making. Those apples are so cool.

Trevor said...

What a fun filled week!

Lacey said...

WOW! What a great way to spend the 2 weeks! You guys seriously packed it in there!

JenW said...

i think you are amazing!!! great job!! so much fun stuff in those 2 weeks:) way to go!

DONNA J. said...

WOW!!!! You are busy, busy, busy!!! Good job on being a super MOM! It looks like you really had some fun activities (and ones that were educations as well). Thanks for sharing :) Your carved pumpkin was excellent!!!

Marisa said...

Your boys are getting so big! I don't even recognize them anymore! What happened to your "baby" - he's all grown up?! Time really does fly.