Thursday, February 26, 2015

Meanwhile, back at the ranch…*

I love my little punks. They have just (re)discovered the literary drollery of Lemony Snicket’s  A Series of Unfortunate Events. Calvin has even taken to reading it aloud to his siblings in his best Tim Curry impersonation. This makes story time SO much more interesting. The series follows the misadventures of the kind, pleasant looking, wealthy, but terribly unlucky Baudelaire orphans and their evil uncle, Count Olaf, who tries to steal their fortune. It’s absurd and witty, and in my case, beverage-snorting funny.

It always amazes me how quickly and deeply we are affected by what we read—thanks to ASoUE, we have acquired a corn snake, which we named Montgomery Montgomery, after the Baudelaire’s Uncle Monty in “The Reptile Room.”


Monty is the most low maintenance critter in our entire household and for this, I love him. He eats once a week. Granted, he eats a mouse that has to be defrosted and warmed to room temperature, then wiggled in front of him so he knows it’s feeding time, but that’s why I had children—to make them do such repugnant tasks.

Thanks also to “The Reptile Room,” there has been a resurgence of Dinovember. I admit, during the ACTUAL Dinovember, I had more fun than the kids staging the dinosaurs’ escapades, but now the kids are into it---and well---the dinos are getting into some pretty shady dealings:


These are not the sauropods you’re looking for.



The dinos’ illegal casino was shut down within hours of opening.


dino school

The dinos attempt to rehabilitate through education.


After a few days of dinosaur mayhem, we decided to make a trip to the Boise Aquarium, to see—more reptiles? There are a surprising number of them at the aquarium.




We also managed to crash a preschool field trip---inadvertently disrupting a puppet show about fish and sharks while oohing and ahhing over real, live fish and sharks.  Oops. 




After a couple hours at the aquarium, I was starting to crave sushi, but the kids vetoed that idea, so we settled on burgers and fries at Red Robin, which is probably my favorite place to not have to cook. Because BOTTOMLESS FRIES.


Our server wanted to know what was up with the Viking helmet. When Blythe explained that it was Thursday, the poor guy just didn’t seem to understand. Everyone knows that Thursdays are Viking Days. Unless it’s Wednesday, which is also Viking Day. As is every other Saturday, unless Blythe forgets, in which case, both Sunday and Monday are Viking Days.

A highlight of each homeschooling week is the library’s “Fun with Science” class. I have no idea what goes on during these events—because when I go to the library, everything around me drops away except for the shelves and shelves and shelves of glorious books. The kids must fend for themselves. Fortunately, they are cute and have mastered that inquisitive, hopeful puppy dog look that librarians can’t resist, no matter how obnoxious the kids are.  LIFE SKILLZ.


The kids tell me the theme for the class was “All About Air.” They made bubble sculptures.




Has anyone figured out how to make square bubbles? Winking smile

Who knew that Lemony Snicket books could inspire such a week of learning and fun?

*The title for this post was inspired by the following quote from ASoUE Book 2: The Reptile Room:

“It is now necessary for me to use the rather hackneyed phrase "meanwhile, back at the ranch." The word "hackneyed" here means "used by so many writers that by the time Lemony Snicket uses it, it is a tiresome cliche." "Meanwhile, back at the ranch" is a phrase used to link what is going on in one part of the story to what is going on in another part of the story, and it has nothing to do with cows or horses or with any people who work in rural areas where ranches are, or even with ranch dressing, which is creamy and put on salads.”