Well, we had talked about it for a long time.....and finally this year we made the trip to Great Wolf Lodge for Frankie's 13th birthday! He got to invite his best friend Blake (who has never missed a birthday since they were in kindergarten!) and we also invited some good family friends to go as well. The only problem, at 13 and 10 the kids are getting a little too old to fit comfortably in the back of the car for an extended trip! lol It's pretty bad when one of the boys suggests the quiet game!
So you can imagine their joy when finally they saw the sign for GWL!!!
We got the room that had the KIDS CABIN..... so they had their own space and their own tv! I thought it was very cute!
The boys took the bunk beds.....
And Gracie took the daybed.....
The lobby was all decked out for Halloween! Very fun, but we were one week too early for the Halloween activities.....Not that there isn't plenty to do any other time. It is definetly designed with kids in mind. A mystery game, an arcade, a kids spa, etc.....
The views from the lobby windows, but unfortunetly, it did not capture the full enormity of the place! There were so many different pool areas, and several places for little bity kids and it was just so big, you could not see the whole place unless you were up on the stairs waiting in line for a slide.
The wave pool is where the boys spent most of their time. Every 10 minutes a wolf woud howl and the waves would start up like you were in the ocean! Then there would be a brief lull in the water where it was calm and the pool would clear out for the most part, and then the wolf would howl and they would all came a runnin again!
When one kid would be in there, you would send another kid in to retrieve the first one and neither one would come out! It was more like the Bermuda Triangle than the Wave Pool, for once they went in, you never saw them come out!!
What made for very comical action was if you fell trying to get out. Every time you would try to stand up, another wave would come and knock you down! The boys actually liked this effect and would attempt to crawl out and therefor get the effect!
Frankie finally emerging! He used the ladder instead of tring to walk out the other side! lol
Then there was the Lazy River! Now THAT was more my speed! You could sit or lay on a tube and let the current take you around! The only problem, it was so shallow, unless you sat in the tube, you risked scraping your toes or knees! Ha! Ha!
The Rollercoaster Slide! It's the long blue tunnel! It also always had the longest line. It went so fast, Chris and Gracie caught a little air on it! It litteraly lifted them off the slide for a few seconds!! There twords the bottom is a big ol' bowl like slide....we nicknamed it the toilet bowl! It was very much like being flushed down a toilet! I allowed Gracie to talk me into going on it! Frankie was right in his description of it....FAST! Let's just say as we were going down I think the whole waterpark learned Gracie's full name!!!
One of the very few things I can complain about the place (which is NOT very many) is how many stairs you have to climb to get up to the slides. And if you are afraid of heights, and you have to stand in line for any length of time....not pretty! And if you DON'T have to stand in line, you don't get a chance to stop and catch your breathe before being plunged down the slide!!! It all makes for a very light headed experience!
So Chris and the kids convinced me to go on "The Family Slide". Such an innocent DECIEVING name!!! The kids went on one raft before us, then Chris and I in the second. He was supposed to make it so I went down facing front, however his insistance that I get in first, along with some probable conspiring with the guy who gave us the heave ho down the slide, put me going down backwards!!! I still get a headache thinking about it! No I did NOT enjoy the ride, in fact I felt motion sick for much of the rest of the day! However Chris and the kids loved it all day, so that is what counted!
Chris and the kids coming down "The Family Slide"....... above and emerging from it below......
Gracie in all her glory!!!
The "Toilet Bowl" to the right of this picture, and where you emerge from it in the middle of the picture. Then, I guess as a consolation as to how your gonna feel afterwards (literally hard to walk) it takes you right into the lazy river!
Finally, on the way home, it was a much more quiet ride ! Except for the time we sat still in traffic due to an accident, the trip home went much faster than the trip there! Doesn't that always seem to be how it is. I wonder if part is due to the anticipation of where your going!
So i have a penpal who lives in Scotland. We have had fun telling each other about things we do in our home countries. I recently told her about geocaching. She told me, they have not heard of that over there, that she is not sure it has caught on over there yet. BUT that they DID have a guy that hid a golden, jewel covered rabbit and then wrote a book with clues in it leading to the rabbit. She said it took 5 years for someone to finally find it and the book, in the meantime, became a best seller! Now THAT is a good idea!.
She said they also do not have yardsales very often, however once a year they have a car/boat sale, where people line their car/boats up at a local school and sell stuff out of them! These are just some of the reasons i love having a penpal!
Well we headed back to our homeschool this year. Using a new curriculum this time. Switched on Schoolhouse. So far I like it alot better than the Abecca videos. Plus, once Gracie hits 7th grade (in two years) I only have to start buying new curriculum for one since she can use Frankie's hand me downs! YEA to SOS for allowing that! PLUS Gracie was super excited to start school after we went through how it was going to work, that's half the battle for the year, getting HER excited! PLUS it does most of the grading for me! YEA for all of the above.
Well I have been planning for weeks for this day. Making sure not to make plans with any friends so all my attention would be on the kids. Well as normal, no planned day around here goes as planned. Even though I had walked the kids through stuff on the computers of how it all works, I guess until you actually DO the work, you just don't know. Both had many occasions that they needed my help. So did several other things needing to be addressed, like a repair man, getting supper going in the crockpot, addressing a couple emails, and cancelling a service contract with Mr. Quick. ALL at the same time. But I am happy to say, I never lost my cool through all that. In fact I only lost my cool once, with Gracie, with Math! That evil evil evil little subject! It truly is my nemesis! But we got through it. She got through her piano practice and we got to the nature park to look for a few geocaches as our PE. I decided, while the weather is nice, it's best to try for some FUN excersising. The kids, while exhausted after hiking for an hour, were thanking me for getting to have some fun afterwards.
The kids were both happy to have such short school days. I was impressed as well, until I looked at the schedule for later in the month. It appears, they try to EASE the kids into things the first week. Both kids having 5 subjects to work on today and 4 tomorrow. However, as I looked into the weeks ahead, there were days Gracie will have up to 16 things to work on! However, that includes all projects, tests and quizes. So while it looks overwhelming, it may go fast. We shall see.
After last year, I decided Gracie would be sitting in whatever room I was in while working on school so I could answer any questions and help keep her on track. We had bought one of those big round chairs at goodwill a year or two ago. I had brought it upstairs (from the basement where it ended up) Saturday to have it ready for today. She opened it and was using it in the living room all weekend. Wouldn't you know it, today, when we put it in my office, the stupid thing broke! SOO now we can go find a new chair! But I think her being with me is going to work out well. Hopefully tomorrow, we won't have so many "issues" arise and the day will go smoother. Although I must say, as first days go, I think we got alot accomplished. Ecspecially considering this family of late risers had to start getting up so early!
Day 2, the Henry Ford Musuem! One of my favorites due to the Homemaking stuff!
There is an actual size airplane behind them! This muesum is huge!!!
The spectrum of things the museum covers is insane! You have government, to pop culture to vehicles to dollhouses! This is the "The signers". I am assuming the signers of the declaration of Independence, I was too busy taking pictures to read much! haha!
I also love how interactive it all is. Henry Ford's motto was that kids learned better by doing and than by reading. Here Frankie gets to do both!
This is typical equipment from the Reveloutionary War period. Note how the bed comes out of the trunk!! Pretty smart if you ask me!
Abraham Lincoln's Life mask and Cast of his hand.....
The chair Lincoln was shot in. The chair was released to the theater owner. His wife tried to donate it to the museum, but the person who received her letter did not think Mr. Ford would want something as gruesome as that. So the woman sent it to auction. Later a different Museum employee ended up winning it at the auction! So they paid for something they could have had free.....lesson in communication maybe?
The bus Rosa Parks made famous. When the museum went in search of the bus, it was found abandoned in terrible shape. Through documents they verified that it was indeed the bus, and refurbished it to look as it did back then. Later when Rosa Parks died, they lent the bus to be parked outside the building she was laid out at.
The museum doesn't just have old stuff. here is something from 2010!!! Although it looks as if it's from the future!!
They have many displays of furniture through out the centuries! I did not take the time to read all of them yet, but I did take pictures of the signs so I can go back later! I wish I had taken more time to read while there!
A litle potty chair......
A big potty chair! you lift the seat on this chair and hidden behind that front is a pot!!!
This dresser has it's own little hidden treasures.....
The top turns and there is a little sink and faucest and basin to keep water in! Plus a mirror! It was sooo cool!
It took us actually reading to figure out the thing on the left is the mold to make the chairs on the right!
This was a baby swing!! Not sure how safe it was, but there you are.....
An armchair!? Where there are certainly plenty of places to put your arm!! or you could say the chair itself has plenty of them!!
One of my most favorite parts of the museum! The kitchens through the years! this one is representing a late 1700's kitchen!
This one is a kitchen from the 1840's.....
This one is the 1890's.......
And my favorite of them all... the 1930's!!
This was not a normal doll house. This was a scaled replica of one of the Ford's homes, that Henry had made for his wife so she could figure out where to put the furniture! Can you say spoiled rotten! lol yes i am jealous!
There were also lots of other normal doll houses! One day, I want to own a dollhouse like these!
There was also a play house, that even an adult could enjoy! hee hee! How nice for her to match the colors of the house!
Oh the many stoves America has had through the years!
This bit of machinery, can pick your corn, husk it, and grind up the husks and cobs into grain all at the same time! That's insane!!!
This was sooo funny! After WWII this was supposed to be a type of prefabricated homes that they could sell and ship to anywhere. There was not enough homes when all the soldiers came back from war and this was one of the ideas they came up with. Needless to say, they did not take off and only 2 were ever manufactured, this is one of them.....
It was a round metal house with very little room. Think along the lines of the amount of room in a trailer!
Instead of a dresser, you had this little thing, where you push the button and the "shelves" rotated like a rotissery oven! And those were mighty small shelves to begin with let me tell you!
A rare photo of Lincoln without his famous beard! Doesn't he look different!
This soldier was shot through the pelvic bone. Years later it still did not heal properly and in the photo he is holding a drainage tube. He took the picture to send along with his letter asking for benefits after the war......
Next to the "Weiner Mobile" they had a lifesize hotdog bun the kids could lay in and pretend to be a hotdog....
My favorite era, the 1930's.
The hippie era of getting back to the basics!
Along some of the walls they had different items from the different era's. Another one of my favorite eras!
In this era they even have a bra!!! hahaha! Good thing Frankie wasn't with us girls at this point in the museum! He won't even look at the Victoria Secrets windows at the mall!
Henry Ford did a wonderful job of putting together this museum and the people in charge since he passed have kept it up. There is so much to see and many museums have since tried to copy his style. But there will only ever be one Henry Ford. His life story is extremely interesting as well. I highly recommend reading it and then visiting the musuem and village afterwards!
At PetSmart the other day, a couple came in with their little girl dog. She was licking and sniffing all over Frankie and Gracie said, "Wow Frankie, I never saw a girl so interested in you!"
Grace: "mom, why is iguana illegal? Me: frowning at her "what?!"....then it hits me " you mean marijuana?" Grace: "ya marijuana..."
Grace: we love the chilli at the school cafeteria! it comes from the milk factory! * strange look from mom and dad* Grace: ya the same people that deliver the milk deliver the chilli!
Gracie: "mom can i go downstairs and get on the computer?" Mom: "Ask your dad" Gracie: (exasperated) "Why can't i just be a free american and do what i want!" Mom: "go ask your dad if your allowed to be a free american"
"have you ever heard of tornado alley? it's where alot of tornados go alot, not many people live on that street anymore"
So I just wiped my face down with witch-hazel and frankie walked up and kissed me on the cheek, I said ewe! Witch hazel, he sputters and says I'm not sure that's good for you, I said its all natural, and in all his frankie wisdom, he sarcastically said, ya, so is poison ivy!
From Frankie; Mom is like a bloodclot in the flow of life. Get her in a crowd and she stops it up. **This came after i evidently took too long after church talking to another lady....
*queen bee was located on the window sill INSIDE the house, dad sprays with hairspray, then picks up with spoon and takes to the toilet to dispose of it. Frankie: now that's what i call a royal flush!
"i can't believe they didnt' let me see the animals! they know that i love animals! why wouldn't they let me see the animals?!"