Friday, January 25, 2013

Living Bible Museum: Day trip

To fight the winter blues I have decided to do something besides work, school, and sit at home alone with the kids.

I've been trying to do fun day trips or find cheap things to do for fun on the weekends.

Last Saturday we took a day trip to The Living Bible Museum in Mansfield. 

I invited Maddie, my niece, to come along but she had been sick all week and couldn't come. 

Instead I asked Molly, my other niece, if she wanted to join in on the fun.  We were so excited when she agreed!

I had heard about the museum before but had never been there.  Actually, mom said she took us there when we were little but I don't remember it. 

I wasn't sure what to expect.  I knew it was a museum of wax figures or of mannequins displayed to show Biblical stories. 

There were four tours.  Old Testament, The Life of Christ, and two others more suitable for older children. 

I told the kids we would pick one tour (each an hour) and do that one but if they were really good and wanted to do the second one we could.

They all voted for Miracles of the Old Testament.

It was awesome!

All I can say is if you have a few hours one Saturday and need a fun day trip, go take these tours.  They were very interesting, very well-done.  The art was amazing and the narrating of the story was great as well.

Once the tour was over, the guide commented on how well behaved they were (I told him bribery of an ice cream cone does wonders:-) and also that he could tell they know their stories!

The kids begged to go on the second tour, The Life of Christ.

How do you tell 4 darling kids 'No' when they are begging for more time spent 'in' the Bible?

We took a quick potty break and headed to the next tour.

Funny thing was after the tour 4 out of 5 of us said we liked the Life of Christ tour better, but 5/5 voted we do Old Testament first.

I went to the website and stole a few pictures.  Just to show you how amazing it was. And seriously.  These pictures do not do the tours justice.  Much, much better in 'real life'.

23rd Psalm
Almost all of the animals were ones they purchased from a taxidermist. 
We saw sheep, cows, donkeys, doves, you name it.
The art was incredible! 

The Last Supper
One of my top ten favorites.  The narrator goes through each disciple posed here and tells their name and a bit about them.  It also describes what they could have been thinking during this time based on their personalities. 
 Definitely brought The Twelve to life.  Extremely educational and realistic.

   Jesus loves the little children of the world!
One of the kids' favorites!  Shows Jesus sitting with all nationalities of children .  Beautifully done.

On our way out, I grabbed a quick pic of the kiddos:
 
As promised on the way home we stopped at McDonald's for a quick ice cream cone. 
 
I'm planning on taking Riley back for a one on one trip to see the other two tours.  We can't wait to go!
 
I can't tell you how many times this past week I have said "Oh, remember that story!  We saw the display of it at the museum...remember it looked like such and such" and the kids' light bulbs go off in their heads.  It ended up being more than a fun day out.  I'm hoping they'll remember it for a long time. 
 
I would highly recommend this tour to everyone!! Adults and children alike.
 
We can't wait to go back!

Monday, January 21, 2013

T-roy Boy!!!

Almost two years ago I wrote about my sweetie little nieces.

You can read about them here

I found this comment in the first few phrases:
 "There is something special about nieces (nephews too, I'm sure...I just don't have any)"
 
Well, guess what? 
 
I finally have a nephew!!!!
 
 
K&K welcomed Troy Eric on January 10th.  He was a husky 8'13". 
 
I couldn't wait to run up to the hospital to kiss on his fat cheeks.  
 
After giving them a day to recoup, I ran up to MGH and did just that. 
 
All four of my siblings and my one brother in law all have had nephews before.  
 
Troy is my first!
 
That puts me in the front running for favorite auntie?
 
 
Right S&T? (haha)
 
 
 



Sunday, January 20, 2013

Coasting

Remember me posting about Kayaking and then This one about being thrown back out to sea?

Well, seeing that they both carry the theme of me floundering in a boat at sea I thought I would continue to analogy.

I'm still in my little boat.

I'm still at sea.

But my arms are weary. 

I'm thirsty from inhaling the saltwater.

I hunger from the effort.

My body aches from the effort and the lack of rest.

So I decide to coast.

I'm tired.

Four years ago I started back to school.

Two weeks left.

But in those two weeks I have a final presentation, regular classwork.

And two CLEP tests to test out of. 

Three and a half years ago I became a single mom.

Its been the best three and a half years.

But with few breaks its slightly tiring.

Tuesday brings the final court date.

I'm not overly stressed; but there is the anxiety knowing that the fate lies in the judge's decision.

Each scenario: school, single mom thing, and court are each in their own right kinda stressful.

What I have stopped doing in the past two weeks is job hunting and apartment hunting. 

Still figuring things out.

Just a lot on my mind.

So I'm coasting.

The chest gripping anxiety has went away.

I'm going to get court over with.

I'm going to finish school.

I'm going to stop.  And enjoy my children. 

Then I'm going to pick up where I left off and pound the pavement looking for a job.

I'm just going to enjoy the next few weeks, sitting in my little boat being refreshed and renewed.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

7 kids, ages 10 and under: Paint, Tee-shirts, and Tie-dye

I had a little surprise planned for my sisters and mom.

It involved 7 kids, ages 10 and under, paint, tee-shirts, and tie-dye.

It sounded like a great idea.

Once I dove into the project, I realized how it could go two very different ways.

It could either be a hit or a terrible disaster.

It was a hit.

I had planned on taking tons of pictures of the day.  We had so much fun and I wanted to remember it.

This is the only photo I grabbed. And it was a quickie on Auntie Tricie's phone.


I was concentrating so hard on not getting paint all over moms house that the camera was forgotten.

I had two projects going at once. 

The first was hand print art in  Christmas themes.  A gift for Grandmas, aunts, and moms.  This involved thumbprints and full blown hand-prints.  So.much.fun.

The next surprise was for my mom for us to show her on Christmas.

We tie-dyed tee-shirts, each child choosing their own color theme.

I let it set a few days before washing it out.

Christmas Eve found me ironing on names and numbers on the back of the shirts.

I made the shirts resemble a jersey.  Their names on the back with a large number.  The number assigned to each back was the birth order they were a grandchild.

 
I even did a onesie with an '8' on the back for Baby Gasser who would be arriving in a few weeks!


After opening gifts; Tricia and I took all the kids into moms room.  We put their shirts on them and had them line up in order.  I yelled out to Mom, Kelly & Kurt, and Stacy and told them to close their eyes.

The children silently walked into the living room, in numerical order and lined up with their backs facing the couch.



The reacted exactly how we had hoped they would.  With Grandma/Mom squealing saying how cute they were!

We did a video of mom calling out their names for them to turn around.  We had so much fun!
video




Saturday, January 12, 2013

And the winner is...

After frame after frame (and trying to talk me into spending FOUR times the dollar amount that I set), he chose frame F!

Red for Rittman Indians he said :-)  They match his red and black shoes quite well.  School spirit runs pretty deep for this boy!

I must say, he chose a great frame and instead of waiting the week it only took two days for them to come in!



He is so excited to be able to see and I must add he looks quite charming as well!

Friday, January 11, 2013

Specs

He's growing up.

He needed glasses.

Went to the optical center to pick out a pair.

I gave him the price range he could pick from.

Here are the one he tried on:

Each photo has a letter below it.  Leave a comment and guess which pair he chose.  Tomorrow I will post a picture of him sporting his new specs!

A

B

 C

D

E

F

G
 
Happy guessing!
 
Rhianna and Reagan were patiently waiting on us while we tried on pair after pair of glasses.
They were both disappointed that Riley was 'allowed' to buy a pair but they didn't get some. 
They crack me up.
Pretty cute though, 'eh?
 


 

 



Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Edible Nativity

Remember this post I wrote about a surprise my niece and I were planning? 

This is what we planned:


Mary & Joseph looking down on the Babe in the manager :-)


The graham cracker stable is topped with a laffy taffy star.  The mortar is royal icing and the straw strewn about the stable and barnyard are yellow nerds. The manager is caramels and tootsie rolls with a laffy taffy spread out as swaddling clothes.  Baby Jesus is a vanilla tootsie roll.  Mary and Joseph, portrayed as Tootsie pops standing up in a Snickers bar are adorned by their robes of Fruit Roll-Ups.  (Unfortunately, I did not read the box.  These Fruit Roll Ups were 'special' and had jokes printed all over them....so Mary, Joseph and the Shepherds are wearing robes printed with jokes.)  The marshmallow sheep with chocolate licorice feet and noses are lying down around the Tootsie Pop/3 Musketeer shepherds.  The Wise men are also Tootsie Pops stuck in Snickers (they kept falling over so I just said they were weary from their journey).  Their crowns were delicately designed and cut from orange fruit roll-ups and wrapped gently around their tootsie pop heads.  Their transportation, the camels, are in the background as cow tales shaped like camels with tootsie roll legs.   The donkey, gingerbread marshmallows placed on toothpicks, lay resting in front of the manager.


Molly proudly looking at our surprise project we planned for all the kids at Grandma's house. 

The creators L-R  Annie (in front) Rhianna, Molly, Reagan, and Maddie.
 
 
We took the finished nativity to my Grandpa and Grandma Bauman's Christmas get-together that night.  The kids did so good of not touching it (I meant for them to eat it but they were so respectful and didn't touch it.)  When I told them they were supposed to eat it, the entire scene disappeared in minutes. 
 
It was so much fun doing this!  It gave the kids something fun to do other than focus on what they were getting.  A fun way to point back to the reason for the season.
 
I'm brainstorming Easter ideas...keep watching for what craziness I come up with!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas

This year I wasn't sure how much I was going to do for Christmas. 

After spending a year and a half getting rid of stuff, I wasn't sure I wanted to spend more money on stuff that I would later have to pick up. 

But I relented and bought a few things. 

We have a tradition of opening gifts on Christmas Eve.  It is more relaxed and enjoyable than the rush of Christmas Day.




 I had a few surprises up my sleeve for each child.  While our Christmas wasn't huge; I wanted what they received to be memorable.

I thought I did good but right before opening gifts I started to get nervous that they wouldn't like it. 

The look on his face when he realized what it was relieved any fears I had:

 
Riley had been wanting a DS so bad.  His dad bought him one years ago and Reagan busted it in half.  Then I bought him one awhile ago but took from him as a punishment.  I hid it so good that we never found it :-(  Even with the move.  He wasn't too happy with me. 
 
I didn't really want to spend that much money on a gift so I watched Ebay and got an awesome deal on a used one.  Rhianna had always wanted one as well so I found her a pink one. 
 
They were thrilled!
 
Opening...

Rhianna peaking at Riley's to see what he has...

Riley realizing what it is and Rhianna still trying to crack the package open. 
Woohoo!  A pearly pink DS (finally a GIRLIE one) of her very own!!
 
Now all three kids have their own game that they can play together in the car on our long trip!
 
We had an awesome Christmas Day the next day.  We went to church in the morning and then my moms for the day.  We had my grandparent's Christmas (on my dad's side) that night. 
 
It was a simple Christmas but the best one in years!


Friday, January 4, 2013

Diapers Update

A few weeks ago I wrote about supporting newly adopted parents. 

If you are new here,  you can read it here.

I just wanted to thank all the viewers who gave so generously and let them know you did make a difference. 

We collected almost 1000 wipes and almost 700 diapers.

That's a lot of wipes.  That's a lot of diapers.

The collection is ongoing. 

If you are interested in helping out a family who sacrificed so much to adopt a baby, this is a very simple way to do so.

Go to diapers.com and go to registry.  The first name is Diapers For and the last name is Babies.

The shipment will come directly to me and I will distribute accordingly! 

The first home we delivered to we wrapped up the diapers in a HUGE box and wrapped it. 

It was so much fun to deliver them. 

Thanks for your generosity.

The little baby girlie was kicking and smiling at all the commotion.

While she doesn't yet know how loved she is and how special she is, I hope someday she knows how extra-special she is.

Thanks again :-)