Saturday, February 26, 2022

A Stop In Memphis

 Thanks to the weather along our travel route and snow at home, we left a full twenty four hours later than planned for another epic road trip. What was meant to be a leisurely drive with plenty of stops and excursions, turned into a mad, sixteen and a half hour drive from Iowa to the Gulf. It was intense and tiring. The minis were extremely disappointed to be missing their day in Memphis, so we turned it into our hour in Memphis, TN with promises of returning soon.

Despite being after hours, we made a quick stop at the Lorraine Motel (where MLK died). Since it was (past) dinner time, we placed an online order at Central BBQ, which is directly across the street from the Lorraine Motel. Between the lack of signage in the city and my maps giving me poor directions, we got a bit lost after our quick visit downtown Memphis. Okay, a lot lost, but not all was lost because we happened upon Graceland and got a quick view! That was a highlight for my Elvis loving children.

As I ate my bbq sandwich in the car while I drove (100% not recommended) I laughed because the last time I shoved food in my face as I drove down an interstate, was our last Mom and Minis Homeschool trip when we ate a dozen Voodoo donuts for lunch on our way to Mt. Hood. I always think about what I hope my children take away from our homeschool years, but I really hope it's not that mom eats while she drives. 

Thursday, February 17, 2022

Finally Out Of The House

 As you may have gathered, January was a joke for us. There were Covid exposures, tons of testing, stomach flu, and colds. It was not cool. As soon as February hit, we were ready for some freedom. Our last two weekends, we went hiking, spent time with family, went out, and finally went to one of our favorite winter time places: the Des Moines Art Center. I'm feeling MUCH happier since breaking out of the house and spending time amongst others. 

The middle mini has spent a lot of time baking. One of our favorites were these vanilla almond cupcakes he made for my mom's birthday.

I made waffles for the first time in my life! The first two were rough looking (as evident by my plate above), but then I got the hang of it and they came out beautifully.

Group pictures were what we call tricky business.

We've been hiking at this park numerous time before, but this was our first time hiking the marshland when it was frozen. It was beautifully peaceful, as we had the entire park to ourselves! Not another sole on the trails.

I went to Kava over Christmas break and fell in love with the space. This time I brought the rest of my circus to try out the almond flour waffles, smoothie bowls, and smoothies. All of it is heavenly.

A walk around the Art Center, home to grab the dog, and then back to Greenwood Park to walk around the pond and enjoy a cold stroll on the bike path. The trails in the area were completely ice covered, so we stuck to the cleared bike trail until we were too cold to continue and decided to head home.

Saturday night and Sunday were spent in the kitchen baking sugar cookies, heart shaped brownies, homemade play doughs, and food for the Super Bowl.

Our Super Bowl food included French dip sandwiches and Cincinnati chili.

Monday, February 14, 2022

Our Love Day Was Full Of Fun


Activities for our February 14, 2022.

Valentine's Day is a party day. In case you didn't know, there's no romance involved in the day, it's all about fun. There was soooo many treats, a goody exchange, activities, and all the heart shaped foods. Since we had such a filled Valentine's Day, my minis chose to celebrate with us the day before. By that I mean they were allowed to get their few gifts and eat chocolates before breakfast, along with a few extra I love you's thrown out throughout the day. I used the day to prep for our February 14th, which means spending most of the day in the kitchen baking and whipping up homemade play doughs. 

Our Valentine's morning was intense, with activities beginning at 8 a.m. and going steady until lunchtime. Passing out Valentine's took the longest, as a few littles had trouble grasping the concept of giving the treats they brought to others. I also had one who wanted to share all of the Valentine's they got with everyone else. Tough concepts, but we got through it! We did not make the feet painting happen, as by the time we hit 11:15, the kids asked for a brief play dough break before lunchtime. 

Everyone's favorite pancake muffins. As it turns out, I made enough to eat the rest of the week.

Yoda supervised the sensory corner. Also, a child made the "Target symbol." 

I usually have the kids decorate paper bags, but I didn't find any in my craft supplies. Please note, I know I have an unbelievable amount of them (unless the minis happened to come across them and used them all) and simply couldn't find where I put them. I'm sure I'll come across them in the next few months, move them to where I think I'll find them, and then not be able to find them for next year. Luckily, I have bags galore and had the kids decorate clear quart bags with Sharpie markers. The dog was confused about what the kids were doing and anxiously waited for food to drop.

Sugar cookie decorating for morning snack. All of the littles ate their cookie, then the sprinkles, then licked all of the frosting off of their plates. 

Our Find It Game for the day had the kids finding 14 hearts. Each heart had writing that said something I loved about a child. Every child had a heart to find. 

As with most things, Zeus (the dog) was a huge help in the celebrations.

In all honesty, I probably could have just had the play dough and that would have been sufficient for all of the kids. Of course, that would be too boring for myself, so I'm glad we went all out for the day!