Monday, August 20, 2012

First Day of School - Pre-K 4

We got home from vacation at 7:30 on a Sunday night. We thought that Monday morning was the first day of school. We raced over. We took pictures. It wasn't the first day of school at all.

A week later, we tried again. Monkey has been very interested in clocks and time, and we found this blue clock at the Target dollar spot before vacation. He insisted on bringing it with him to show his new teacher and talk to her about how he wants to learn about time. Ms. C was very supportive of this plan and he told me today that they had  played with clocks and talked about time. Everyone in the class has a clock now, and I was told that the kids said the clocks were "beautiful".

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Summer Vacation, part IV

Last one, we promise.

On our way home from Mackinaw, Grandpa T headed one way to visit his friend and we headed another way to visit our friends. We had a lovely weekend with P and M in Ypsilanti. P and M took us to the Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum, which everyone really enjoyed. The museum is geared towards science exclusively, which meant that there were a million gears and buttons and switches and simple machines and physics illustrations. Monkey had a blast.

Almost as exciting (perhaps more exciting?) was encountering P and M's pets: a house rabbit named Toby and two cats. Monkey spent many enjoyable minutes stalking these poor creatures throughout the house while the grown ups watched the Olympics. It was a wonderful way to end our big trip, relaxing with friends. Thanks, P and M!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Summer Vacation, part III

 We visited the Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse, which was another lovely state park site. Monkey was too short to climb up into the light, but he waved at Mr. and Mrs. Z while he played with Grandpa.

 Monkey really loved this part of the exhibit, which featured magnetic boats on a giant map. He informed us that the white parts were ice and the ships were icebreakers. Clearly the Icebreaker Mackinaw made an impression.  

The beach in front of the lighthouse offered some really lovely views of the bridge. 

We drove across the bridge, which was quite windy and also under construction as the men were working to repaint all the cables. It was a lovely view and pretty high up, although from the safety of our car it wasn't too  intimidating. We had lunch in St. Ignace and turned right back around. We spent the afternoon at the Pirates Adventure Waterpark, which Monkey LOVED. Just the right size for him (Mr. Z, not so much.) 

Our last morning in Mackinaw it was too cold and windy for the beach, so Monkey tried out the hotel pool instead. He deemed it sufficient. 

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Summer Vacation, part II

Our second day in Mackinaw, we loaded our bikes up on the ferry and headed to Mackinac Island. Monkey was very excited to ride on the big boat that sprayed water! We had really gorgeous weather. 
 Round Point Island Light from the ferry
 Our first stop on Mackinac Island was the Butterfly House. This was one of Monkey's picks, but he was disappointed when none of the butterflies wanted to touch him. We tried to explain that he had to hold very still if he wanted a butterfly to land on him, but he was not equal to the task. There was an adjoining room with frogs and bugs that proved a little more entertaining. 

 After butterflies and bugs, we biked around the entire island! The majority of the island is actually a state park and as there are no cars allowed on the island, biking or horse drawn carriage are the best way to see the coast. We had a great ride and stopped for lunch at one of the park stands. Monkey and Mr. Z had to throw some rocks in the big lake, of course. (Monkey also tried to load up his pockets with 'souvenirs'). 

 We then toured the historic sites and Fort Mackinac. Monkey loved the costumed interpreters and we spent a lovely afternoon being entertained and playing with the kid-friendly exhibits. Overall, we were very impressed with all of the state park attractions. 

The day ended in a meltdown after Monkey ran away from Mrs. Z and couldn't be located for several minutes. We got back on the ferry as soon as we could and spent the evening eating pizza and watching Disney channel in the hotel room. We had a beautiful day, but we'd also been on the road with a very tired Monkey for five days. 

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Summer Vacation, part I

We must confess that we were poor photographers for the first few days of vacation. We drove to Saginaw, MI for a family wedding and had a great time hanging out with some long-distance family and playing with cousins. Grandpa T came with us and Uncle J and Aunt M met us there too, and we had a good time hanging out with them in Frankenmuth and around town. Then J and M and all the wedding peeps packed up and headed home while we headed north with Grandpa T for some adventures in Mackinaw - which is when we finally picked up the camera and got to clicking. 

Tuesday morning we visited the Icebreaker Mackinaw. Monkey was quite taken with it.