Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Explora!, ABQ art, Petroglyphs

So it didn't occur to me until recently that I haven't updated my blog in over a month.
It felt like it had only been a week!
So back to it!

Our membership at Lawrence Hall of Science has paid off immensely as it gets us into the big museums (Explora! (the children's museum), Museum of Natural History, etc.).
This is Brook's favorite thing at Explora--giant bubbles!!

Sam had a lot of fun playing with electricity, and Russ had a lot of fun showing him how it all worked.

Experimenting with light!

Water play.

We all love this one--there is a huge fan blowing at you and you control the airplane to get it to take off.

We went to a show where they did chemistry reactions.  Brook volunteered to go up on stage to help out.  The guy handed her a cup of cabbage water and said, "Enjoy!"
She scrunched up her nose and looked relieved when he asked them to blow in it to change the pH of the liquid.

After this we went home and made our own indicator and had fun experimenting with stuff around the house.

My n' my shaggy Mario.
(Can you tell what he wanted to be for Halloween this year??  He loved this costume so much he didn't take it off for days, including sleeping!)

The museum also has this great water feature where you control the water fountain.

Fast-forward a month and a half and here are more photos from Explora!
There is an elevator there.  I'd seen it before but never the inside.
Sam asked to ride it, so we decided to check it out.
My jaw dropped when the doors opened!!  We spent some time in there, just hanging out.

This is the view from the water feature from he second level (where there are more controls for the fountain).

Playing with weight distribution.
Has anyone ever seen these bikes??  I know there was/is one at the Seattle Science Center.  Well they have a life-size one just to the left of Brook. 
Russ had been trying to explain why the people don't fall off.  She seemed to understand it a bit more when she was able to test it out on this guy herself.

We found these neat wood pieces out on the deck (Brook and Sam are peeking out of the holes in the truss).
Note:  This is the Before shot.

This is the After shot, taken about 10 minutes later.
Leave it to Brook and Sam to level a house in minutes! :)
It was for a good cause though, a community-built house with all the kids out there.

She loves those large concave discs that you whisper into to talk to someone else across the way.

Sam's favorite spot.  This is at the entrance of Explora! and is pretty neat.  There are balls constantly in motion around this contraption.  It's hypnotizing to watch.
Then behind me is a big wall with all sorts of components to make fun marble run contraptions.
I think Sam would happily spend his entire visit in this area.

Alright, enough of Explora!
On to gymnastics!

Brook started mid-October and has improved so much in just a short amount of time!  I attribute a lot of it to all the practice she and Sam do at home.  I would include some videos of them practicing, but Russ has the camera with him (he's in California for work this week). 
It's pretty fun to watch though--Brook and Sam do gymnastics shows for us and we brought the bar that my outdoor swing swings on inside so they could have a bar to hang from and flip around.  That gets used for at least an hour a day!

This photo was taken on her first day there, where she was shaky and unsure.
Fast-forward to last week and she's the only one in her group that can do perfect cartwheels, get both of her feet up in the air together on handstands and the only one who got to vault onto the pommel horse (all the other girlies jumped into the instructors arms because they couldn't get quite high enough).

We actually went through a period where after each practice Brook was upset and angry.  A couple of weeks ago she told me she didn't want to go back, she was done.  Thankfully, after talking about it a bit we figured out it was her coach that bugged her--she could be really mean.  So we switched her to another class and when we left she was skipping and talking about being excited for next week.  Yay!

I've found a partner to join me in theatrical productions!  Yay!
We went and saw Ash Tree by Georgina H Escobar.  SO good!!!  We're excited to go see more, especially since we've found another mom and daughter who enjoy going as well.
Watch out Albuquerque!  :)

Albuquerque is an interesting place.  There is a little bit of everything here--good and bad.
One thing they have a lot of is art!  It's on the side of buildings everywhere.
Here are a few from just around our neighborhood:

We decided to check out The Petroglyphs on a warm day.
Note to self:  Next time bring MUCH more water!!
It was fun though because we went online beforehand and they showed a map with some of the more prominent petroglyphs, so I put together a little booklet for us to look through and try to find on our way.
Here, we found the first one, a lizard!

Then we didn't find many of the others.  Ha!
It was about a 2 mile hike from start to finish.  The poor kids were wiped.
This was at the end of the petroglyphs, where there were many.

Then started the hike back to the car.  Oy.

"Come on, Sam."

Brook and Russ were waaaaay ahead of us.  I'd walk for a bit and wait for Sam (who was snapping photos as he meandered).

It was hot.

"Mooooooom, I'm tired!!!"

My favorite shot of the entire trip.
We were maybe 100 feet from the car.  He just couldn't do it.
He lay down and was digging a hole, then playing with some sticks and writing in the sand.
I finally offered a piggyback ride and we made it.

Okay, off to upload pics for the next post so hopefully I can finish it before January gets here!  Ack.

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