Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Art Group Day 7- Monoprints

Today in art group we made monoprints.  We've been talking about print making and last week our project could have made a series of prints.  Two of the girls did a series.  Today we looked at an original piece I have in my family room by Karen Kyler and talked a little about how some prints cannot be duplicated exactly because they are so layered and free-form.  We used tempera with textured shelf paper, bubble wrap, feathers, string, plastic forks, sponges, hands etc. in order to create a layered print.  It was a really fun project for all of the kids.  Good for a variety of age groups.  Bubble wrap is especially fun. 
 Here is Red Fish's project in progress.

Our Family

Our family according to New Fish- Mommy, Daddy, Ay-sheeeeeee, & Bub. Yes, she refers to herself as "Bub."  I just want to remember that.

Monday, June 27, 2011

New Fish's First Swimming Lesson & Concert In The Park

 Little miss New Fish took her first swimming lesson today.  You have never seen a child so excited to get in the water.  She has been waiting for her turn for over a year and I gave in finally.  It's so much easier than trying to wrestle her during Red Fish's lessons and it made her SO HAPPY.  She was grinning from ear to ear the whole time.  She has no problems putting her face in the water or blowing bubbles and she was kicking up a storm.  It was so fun to watch her.

 My grandparents came to watch both of the girls swim since they hadn't seen Red Fish yet.  Red Fish can really swim now and she has been swimming all over the pool at my parent's house.  It's a little nerve wracking for me to take the girls there by myself now because they both think they can swim by themselves but I am having a blast seeing them both enjoy the water so much.

Our little niece I is staying with us this week.  She came to swimming lessons with us and then to a concert in the park later.  We planned to go to concerts in the park all month but we were rained out of several of them.  Luckily we made it to the last one.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Blocks With Mimi

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Mosaics & Zebras

The girls made mosaics today with clay, sea shells, buttons and feathers.  When the clay hardens we will remove the plates. I'm not feeling quite as creative lately with project ideas but at least this was something new.

Also, on Thursday we went for a walk with my Mom and saw a baby zebra in someone's backyard.  Just a random tidbit.

Friday, June 24, 2011


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Art Group Day 6- Foam Prints

 We made Styrofoam prints today in art group using this method.  Usually, I like to do with with something flat and recycled but I wasn't able to cut enough piece of Styrofoam out for all of the kids so we used plates. (Not my most eco-friendly moment.)  The plates were harder for the kids to use but I think they liked the project anyway. We looked at some Rembrandt and Durer prints and talked a little bit about what print making is. 

We spent the rest of the day swimming.  Good day. (Other than my crazy morning of phone calls with annoying people and being late to art group *blush*.)

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Zions Canyon

Canyon Overlook trail
View from the top.

The four of us at the top of the Canyon overlook- right above the great arch.
The Three Patriarchs

 Emerald pools trail- Me & New Fish standing in the little waterfall.
River walk trail next to the Virgin River and the shuttle bus
As part of our quest to see the whole Colorado Plateau with the girls, we decided to move on to our next National Park.  On Sunday we left the North Rim of the Grand Canyon and headed to Zions Canyon.  We drove the Carmel Highway which was beautiful. The girls LOVED the two tunnels.  Red Fish says that was the best part of the whole trip.  Funny kid. We decided to check into a motel since our tent is huge and a pain to set up and we all REALLY needed a shower.  After we got some lunch and were relatively clean, we did the Canyon overlook trail.  New Fish screamed and kicked for the first part but then she started giggling and really enjoying herself. Red Fish loved every second of it.

On day two we decided to do the Zion Canyon Scenic Drive and ride the free shuttles everyplace.  The girls loved this because it meant they could be out of their carseats and could sit up next to the windows.  New Fish is really hating riding rear-facing in her seat still.  (SERIOUSLY- this kid is NEVER going to hit 30 lbs!- Poor thing will never get her seat turned around.)

The first half of the day was ROUGH.  Low point of the trip for sure.  New Fish was just not happy but after we got some lunch and ice cream she couldn't have been happier.  It is zero to ninety with that kid. She is the most adorable child ever and can melt any heart but man she can be a little stinker! Red Fish was a great little traveler and other than being 3 and having a hard time listening she was really great.  She really enjoys going on trips and even loves riding in the car.  Hopefully we can get New Fish a little better acclimated so she will love to travel like the rest of us.

We stopped at the Court of the Patriarchs, hiked to the Emerald Pools, and the Weeping Rock trail.  We also stopped at the Temple of Sinawava and did part of the River Walk.  Zions was beautiful and I definitely want to go back.

Grand Canyon

New Fish was totally in love with our friend M&A's little baby C.  We've decided on an arranged marriage.  ;)  She was constantly hugging him and kissing him and calling after him.  The whole way home yesterday, she kept saying: "Miss baby C." 

 Sorry- these pictures are out of order but it's the best I could do. Thursday night we left for the Grand Canyon.  We stayed there until Sunday lunchtime and then drove to Zion Canyon and spent a couple of days there, returning last night.  It was a good trip and we mostly had a nice time and got to spend some good quality time together.

We stayed the night in a motel in Kanab, UT.  My brother and his wife slept on the floor of our room.  Red Fish slept pretty well but New Fish didn't.  New Fish has this ability to scream endlessly at an ultrasonic pitch, louder than any child I have ever met.  I don't think people quite believe how loud it is until they experience her at her most uncontrollable.  There is no comforting her and no quieting her down.  You pretty much just have to ride it out until she stops.  Unfortunately there was a lot of screaming (sometimes during the night) on this trip.  Thursday night, we stayed in a motel and my brother and his wife slept on the floor.  New Fish did her best to wake the whole building.  However, she did much much better on the drive this year.  She didn't cry at all.  So that was much more pleasant than our road trips last year. 

We got up on Friday and finished driving to the North Rim camp ground.  We had a group site so we could all set our tents up together.  After we set up camp and had a picnic we went to the Grand Cnayon Lodge and walked out to Bright Angel Point for an awesome view of Bright Angel Canyon, and the Deva Brahma and Zoroaster Temples.  We also walked down the The Transept Trail and took a look at Roaring Springs Canyon and the canyon rim.  The girls did great.  We took Red Fish's ski harness with us so we could keep a hold of her since there are some very steep dropoffs and our little girl isn't afraid of heights (or much else.)

We had the perfect group to go with.  Everybody was really fun to be with. We spent some time hanging out at our campground and we had an awesome dutch oven dinner and roasted marshmallows over the fire.  It was classic mountain camping.  I was really surprised by how forested everything was.  I think I must have had a really strange picture of what the Grand Canyon was going to be like.  I expected it to be much hotter and deserted.  It was nice and cool and covered in trees.

Unfortunately, Red Fish and New Fish didn't sleep well in the tent at all.  We were up all night, both nights in the tent.  New Fish did her ultrasonic scream multiple times and woke the whole campground, which completely stressed me out.  They were pretty happy during the day and behaved really well though, especially considering they were running on next to no sleep.  I had to give myself a pep talk several times that "family vacations are important, we are building traditions that will bond our family together forever blah blah blah."  We did have a really good time but there were several moments that I was frustrated enough to contemplate how hard it would be to pack up and run home.  Traveling with little kids is hard work!

On Saturday morning, the first thing I saw when I woke up was New Fish's grinning face right above mine.  She grinned at me and said: "Mom?  Need hug?"  Kids know when their mommies need some love.
Dirty baby- you can tell where her shirt tucked into her pants.
 Little Miss New Fish was also completely in love with the dirt. It took a close second to baby C. She was so filthy.  She kept just rolling around in the dirt and sprinkling it on herself.  I don't think she has ever been so dirty.  It was hilarious.
The whole group.  Two Fish's brother W, his wife A and four kids came with us.  Two Fish's brother M drove up from Southern AZ with his daughter M, Two Fish's mom came, our friends M&A, and my brother "Doo" and his wife "M.E."  We had such a big group and everybody was all over the place so I didn't get nearly enough pictures of everyone.
 On Friday, we drove up Cape Royal road and stopped at Point Imperial (the highest viewpoint on either rim) and Vista Encantada for a view of the Brady and Tritle peaks. We walked out to Angels Window viewpoint, which I thought was especially beautiful. 
The top of the world

Cute little cousins: New Fish, Cousin R, and Red Fish sitting around the campfire.

My first experience with one of the seven natural wonders of the world.  In case you can't think of the others (because I couldn't) they are: Great Barrier Reef, Rio de Janeiro, Mount Everest, Aurora, Paricutin Volcano and Victoria Falls.

Two Fish with his Mom and Red Fish

The four of us

New Fish with my brother's walking stick.

Red Fish just loved wandering around the campground and the woods.  She is a definite outdoors girl.
 I think the girls had more fun just hanging around the campground playing than they did anyplace else.
Hide and Seek

 The girls had such a great time playing with their cousins, aunts and uncles.  There was plenty of hide and seek running around.
Sleepy little hikers
 I was surprised by how much Red Fish wanted to be carried this trip.  Last year, when we wanted her in the backpack, she didn't want to be in.  This year she loved it!

Uncle M

Cute Little Cousins

Thanks family and friends for going with us!  We love you guys!

Father's Day

 We celebrated Father's day over a week ago because we weren't going to be home last Sunday. I am so lucky to be married to Two Fish, I couldn't ask for a better husband.  I really lucked out.  He is such a wonderful Father to our girls and seeing him become a Father has made me love him even more than I did before.  Our girls adore him.  In fact, I'm pretty sure they like him more than me. 
 We went up to my grandparents for a picnic after church.  We grilled chicken and had a feast.
 I'm also really lucky to have such a wonderful Dad.  He has always been my hero.  My grandfather also has a very special place in my heart. 
As you can see, I'm not the only one around here who loves my Dad!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Art Group Day 5- Pinch Pots

 Art Group today was awesome.  We talked briefly about Greek pottery.  We read a little mythology from this book, A Children's Treasury of Mythology, which has great illustrations and we talked about Hercules.  We made pinch pots out of red, air dry clay and then I told them to paint a story on their pot with some metallic black paint.  They really just ended up painting their whole pot but they had a blast!  It was a definite success.  Pinch pots are super simple.  You just roll the clay into a ball, push your thumbs in the middle to make a hole and begin pinching the sides until they made a pot.

11 kids today.