Saturday, April 23, 2011

While Dad's Away...

So, many of you may recall back in March (I know, get off my back) when Clint went out to visit his family in Washington.  Not only did he get to see his daughter and family, but he was also invited by his dad to the UFC event held at Key Arena in Seattle!  I'm so jealous!  Tito Ortiz, (Clint's secret dream-BFF) was supposed to fight that night but because of an injury, or surgery or something, he wasn't able to fight.  I'm going to end with that as I'm sure many of you really don't want the details of Fight Night.  If you do, google it.  :)
Here we are at the airport saying goodbye to daddy.  Oh wait, it's just me.  Oh well.

If you look in the reflection of the van window, you can see his arm around me.
I think he likes me!
So, with The Enforcer, I mean, Dad gone, I figured it was time to let our hair down...Party time!!  The whole week prior was Spring Break for the kids and we really didn't do anything so I felt like this was a great opportunity to not only take them out, but to do something we've never done before.  There's a lot of pictures so get ready....

After leaving the airport, I took the kids to the Children's Museum in Denver.  I didn't spend nearly what I thought it would be for admission and the kids had a BLAST!!  We were there for about 3 hours (well beyond what Clint would've been able to stand) and even managed to skip the gift shop afterward!  It (usually) never fails.  I can't even take these kids to a gas station bathroom in Elksnout, Idaho without one of them asking me to buy them something.  This was a record breaking day!
Right when you walk in, they have a real fire truck on display, with all the bells and whistles, for the kids to climb on.
Hailey and Jett in the cab.

Ethan controlling the fire hose.

"Did he just say something?"

Jett's gotta get in on the action.

Haiden was a little too big for the coat.  I didn't say he didn't try.
I just made him take it off.

Ethan to the rescue!!

The 9-1-1 call center....
Teaches kids when to dial 911 and how to answer the operator's questions.
Ethan thought he was really on the phone with someone, even though we were only role playing.  He was scrambling to think of what to say.  He got some much needed coaching from Haiden.

The next room we ventured into was every kids dream.  It was a mini workshop with real tools and lots of different recycled items like; milk cartons, plastic containers, granola bar boxes, paper towel tubes, toilet paper tubes, and other such clean materials.  In this room you could build a very special toy made from the recycled material, like a train, a snowmobile, a lunchbox, and a few other things I've probably blocked from my memory.  Ethan's first choice was a level 3/3; the hardest, most tedious, and most time consuming project.  My response was, "Hell, no.  Pick again."  After much discussion, we opted for the tractor, which was supposedly a 1/3.

There aren't a whole lot of pictures because all you'd see would be different angles of me sweating and swearing; over 40 minutes worth, trying to put together some piece of crap tractor, made out of recycled crap.  Please feel free to ask me if he plays with this thing....

He would not stop bugging me about using the stupid saw.

This just looks like a disaster waiting to happen...

Entertaining himself....clear from mommy's path.

This was as much interest as he had....
They were ripped off of his face milli-seconds after this shot.

Our next stop was the Bubble Room and it was pretty cool.  There were tables set up all over with different stations for making bubbles.  The room stunk of dish soap and, if you weren't careful, you could slide across the floor faster than Dorothy Hamill at the 1976 Olympics.

Ignore the Albino boy.
Just look at the cool bubbles in the background.

Bubbles, bubbles everywhere.

The curse of the soap...
Here's Jett trying to stick his landing from the Triple Axle.

He was taste testing the funnel...then decided to pop everyones fun.

It was a standing snowman....until it started tipping.

This one made a giant bubble cube you could stand inside.

Ethan wasn't watching the bubble.....He's mean-muggin'.
Someones little bratty child kept popping it.
I told him to go find his mother.....quickly.
 These last one's from the bubble room are pretty cool.  The kids each got a bubble maker thingy (that's the technical name) and tried to make giant bubble-tubes at the same time.  They turned out pretty good!
You can see all three of their "bubble tubes".

I took this right as it popped on his head.
Notice the falling bubble goo.

Hailey's got one as tall as she is.

Ethan looks so proud.
Haiden just looks shocked.  As usual.
OK, moving on....the next stop was like walking onto the set of some animated film.  It was a giant wooded forest; but a squishy kid-friendly version.  There was a big Oak Tree the kids could climb on and it had a little tunnel system underneath it so the kids could crawl all around.

Jett figured out the petals turned.

And now he just spotted the tunnel system.

A little blurry but you get it...all the kids in the tunnel.

Hailey crawling after an escaping Jett.

I have no idea what this is supposed to be....
Maybe some kind of habitat...whatever it is, Ethan's standing in it.

Jett found the crabs and frogs.

The top of the big tree.
 Now, these next pictures are quite humerus.  They had these little animal outfits the kids could put on to look like little woodland critters.  I know what you're thinking, "Eww, you let the kids put those on??  What about lice and dirtiness??!"  I had the same thought.  And then it went away, and I got the kids set up for a photo shoot.
Ethan as cute Mr. Squirrel with his giant acorn.

Looking more like a rabid squirrel without a nut!

Getting little fat man all suited up.

You can't tell me this isn't cute!

Still enjoying the crabs and frogs....
although now he looks like he's looking at a menu.

He found a puzzle piece to bite. 
Him and every other kid who's ever gone in there.

Back to those cute little flowers.

Ethan from behind.  What a cute little tail!

This is his "plotting" face.
I'm fairly certain something horrific happened moments after I took this.
Now, just when you thought this post couldn't get any better, or longer, I must treat you with a video clip of these little furry outfits.

A few comments I'd like to make in reference to said video:  First of all, please notice in the background of the video, our red and black stroller.  In the seat of the stroller you'll find 1 piece of crap tractor.  The big white discs you see are the "wheels" made from some crappy plastic container lids.  Have I mentioned what a piece of crap it is?
Moving on, if the video seems a little long, get over it.  You just watched a small snippet of my 3 hour adventure.  I felt like I was in the middle of a natural disaster.  People, little people, were running and screaming everywhere, cutting me off, and tripping in front of me.  (What?!  My foot slipped.)  In no section of this entire facility did anyone exercise their use of an "indoor voice".

The last section of the museum was rather calming.  It was a special area set up for little ones, 4 and younger.  I was so thankful we hit it last!  The last of the pictures was really just me trying to capture all of our adventures before:  A.) I ran out of battery,  B.) I ran out of memory card space, or C.) they kicked us out; which I truly expected at some point.  (Most likely earlier in the day during shop class when I blurted out a few expletives I was certain the little Amish girl next to me had never heard.)

Crawling through the log tunnel.

I need a time-out spot like this at home.

He's reelin' it in....

He's got a big one on the line!

Such a big boy!

Handsome big brother.

Big sissy helping him down the slide.
I think he has the greatest big sister ever!

Jett:  I'm giving her all she's got, Captain!
Ethan:  All she's got isn't good enough!

And there you have it!  Our amazing adventure to the Children's Museum in Denver.  I'm tired just writing about it.  It's no wonder it took me a month to post it!  If you enjoyed this.....stay tuned!  We're just getting into soccer season!

Not sure what to expect?  Rent the movie Kicking & Screaming.  It's my life every Saturday morning, starting at 10 am.

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