SillyBilly had the week off because his school was closed for parent-teacher conferences and teachers’ conferences. So in between him making LEGO contraptions, playing outside with friends (usually riding his bike or scooter, trying to climb a tree,or roaming around with a bunch of boys brandishing sticks and light sabers!), and eating me out of house and home, we did a few things together.
On Tuesday the Idaho Museum of Natural History was giving away bird guides to any kids who came in with an adult, in honor of the Great Backyard Bird Count this weekend. (We’ll have to figure out where we can do that, since our apartment complex only seems to attract starlings.) We hadn’t been to the museum yet, even though it’s just downstairs from Anthropapa’s office. It’s a great little museum, perfect for kids, with easily digestible exhibits and a nice hands-on science exploration room. We looked at lots of dinosaur and ancient mammal skeletons, displays of how a paleontology excavation looks, a video on Idaho geology, and some beautiful taxidermied local bird species. And of course ye olde gifte shoppe, which was selling real excavating tools (!) but we settled for some coloring books.
So after that we were inspired to make volcanoes! (You know: dinosaurs + geology = volcanoes, right?) First we made a practice one out of a paper plate, aluminum foil, and an empty yogurt container:
Our dish soap, baking soda, and vinegar lava was yellow because we were out of red food coloring!
Then after we got a handle on how the volcano would work, we made another one out of the yogurt container and air-dry clay:
I’ll have to convince SillyBilly to add a bit more clay, and then he’ll paint it. He’s also got big plans to add gravel and some dinosaurs to make a scene. Maybe I’ll make him some little clay palm trees to go with it.
One day this week we got a bit more snow (though it’s melted again by now) and since I had finally remembered to charge the camera batteries, we stopped on the way home from dropping off Anthropapa and Napoleona at ISU to get a shot of the beautiful Portneufs:
Next time I’ll try to zoom in a bit to show the peaks more, but at least you can see the beautiful colors and morning light of winter here. The city, which is somewhat lower than the bank of trees in the middle foreground, is at about about 4500′ and these mountains reach about 8000′.
Then just after I took that photo, I happened to look down at my feet:
Not my footprints, but those of a leetle rabbit who had passed by sometime earlier.
On other days we went to the library, where SillyBilly all by himself asked the reference librarian where to find books on dragons. We hit the thrift store to buy some shirts, as both kids have been doing all sorts of growing lately. And both kids made a pile of valentines for school. (Napoleona had her party today — we were evidently the only ones to make our own valentines. I’m not sure I get why Spiderman, Hannah Montana, and sexy fairies have to do with Valentine’s day. Ours had hearts punched out, heart stickers…just hearts.)
This afternoon after we made some rosemary bread together, SillyBilly asked to use the camera. Things rapidly got out of hand:
In that last one he is wiggling his latest loose tooth. Where did this big boy come from, and what did he do with my baby boy? And then I see things like this, and I can already imagine the young man he will become: