Wow, has the weather ever turned cold this week!
I started off my week with another trip to Sandler Center for the Arts to enjoy the Virginia Symphony playing Beethoven and Mahler.
It was another stunning performance! I do love the symphony so much, and it’s also my rare opportunity to get out without kids in tow for a little mommy time. I usually go by myself, but this season, my neighbor friend had been going with me. It’s nice to have some company!
On Tuesday, Hayden was home for school for Veteran’s Day, so I decided to take the kids out for breakfast at Chick-Fil-A. For an added twist, I took along a game I was reviewing called Snake Oil – Party Potion. Man, we had the best time playing that game in the restaurant!
The kids and I were laughing so hard while we played that folks around us were smiling. That was an awesome game, and it was so easy to take along with us because it was the smaller portable version of the game Hayden asked for and received for Christmas last year. I loved it, and this was my first time playing it with the kids!
On Wednesday, Haylee and I took advantage of having some free time without school this week and decided to have a little fun making her lapbook on Japan. I got a great video from the library called Little Travelers: Japan, and we watched that while we made our Japan lapbook from Homeschool Share. Most of the information for the lapbook came from the book “Look What Came From Japan,” which we were also able to reserve from the library.
Haylee absolutely loved the video and asked me if there were others we could get. I did notice that several of them are available from Amazon Prime Instant Video, so we’ll probably watch the others that way. It was wonderful, and we learned a whole bunch about the Japanese culture and customs.
On Thursday, I received this beautiful tea humidor that I had ordered from eBay. It was a little treat for myself! I’ve always wanted one, and I got this gorgeous wooden box for about $11 shipped, so that was pretty good. The seller had purchased it in a bulk lot from an estate sale and didn’t know it’s condition. It came in the original box and didn’t have any scratches or anything, but the wooden frame around the glass in the lid had come loose.
It was a quick fix with some wood glue, and it was as good as new! I love it! I like to have one of my friends over now and then for tea, and it will be so elegant to serve them their choice of tea from this beautiful box!
I also set about making myself a craft spinner fashioned after the popular “Clip It Up” by Simply Renee. I saw some videos and blogs about making one yourself using an old lamp and a few parts from the hardware store, so I hit some thrift stores until I found just the right lamp. I found this one with the spider lampshade frame included for just $4.25.
I simply added 2 short threaded rods, 2 couplings, a locknut, 2 washers, and a finishing cap from Lowe’s in the lamp accessory department, and I was all set! It took just minutes to disassemble the lamp and add the new parts. I think it turned out so pretty, too! I used some jumbo paper clips from the Dollar Tree to hang up my sticker sheets. It now houses all of my alphabet stickers for my scrapbooks, and it only cost me about $10 to make! Now I’m working on making a much larger floor model to house all of my other stickers. I have to order some specific parts for that to get it just the way I want it, but I’ll share it when I’m all through!
On Friday, I took the kids on a field trip I’d organized for my homeschool group to Bear Path Acres in Franklin, VA, right at the NC line. I’d never been there before, and I was excited to have found someplace new to explore. The facility houses rescued animals of all kinds, from domestic to exotic. Here is a pacing lion that really seemed to want to eat Holden for breakfast!
Nobody could figure out why it took so much interest in Holden, and the female lioness was just as interested in him as we moved down the exhibit! I suspect it may have had something to do with the bright red blanket that was covering him in the stroller. Anyway, it was just a bit creepy!
We also got to see a really friendly grizzly bear that did some tricks. Her name was Shug!
The trainer said she had gotten the bear about 4 years ago when it was severely neglected, abused, and malnourished. She said Shug had never touched soil or been in the water before she came to Bear Path Acres, and Shug has become very trusting of the trainer because she provided so many new “first” opportunities to the bear. She sure was big, but adorable at the same time!
And last but not least, the kids got to feed apple slices to some of the animals.
Because of a highway accident with fatalities caused by a drunk driver overnight, the ongoing accident investigation had some portions of the roadway shut down. As a result, we had to detour on some back country roads, and it took us 2 hours to get there! I thought we were never going to make it, but we finally did. I felt bad for being half an hour late, because I had the money for the whole group, but just about everyone was late in varying degrees, so it was all good. We had plenty of time to enjoy the animals, eat a picnic lunch with our neighbors who went with us, and still make it back just in time to pick Hayden up at school. It was a very frigid but awesome day!
It turned out to be a pretty fun week off from school. I’m looking forward to trying to plan more field trips in the near future. I just want to find some new and different things to do, even if it means taking a bit of a road trip. This is our 12th year of homeschooling in this area, and I’ve done so many of the attractions so many times over that I’m ready for some new adventures!
I hope you all have a great week!