Thursday, November 20, 2014

Children's Art Festival & Warm Christmas Feelings

These pictures are from November 8th, about two weeks ago, when there was an annual Children's Art Festival down town. I have totally forgotten to download them to the computer, and came across them today. So, I figured, that I'd post them here right away before they get forgotten again.

There are always so much going on here in town in the weekends. Almost both Saturday and Sunday. It's impossible to be able to participate in all, but I try to pick out a few activities every weekend that I try to take the kids to, and I am glad that we have so much to choose from.

They really go all in when it comes to children here in town, and most of all these events that you see me take the kids to, are free. All supplies provided, come as you are and enjoy! What is not to love about that!?!

We must have missed this one last year, and I didn't realize that it was so huge, and all Main Street was blocked off, and there were so many different stations and activities to do. We had to go up and down first to at all be able to see what we wanted to do, and still there were too much to choose from. All three kids love art and love to draw and paint. So to start off to give them some paintbrushes, was a given station to go to! Here are some pictures from our wonderful afternoon:

Ben drawing a blue dinosaur. The "theme" for the festival was dinosaurs, and I think that this one is absolutely wonderful. I don't even think that it was meant to be like I see it, but I see a blue big dinosaur bird sitting with his orange feet sticking out in the front, and with his orange beak open to eat.

 Very concentrated getting all the details!

This was a fun station. The kids got to place three plastic dinosaurs on a "magic" paper, then count to 30 while the paper was laying in the sun, then the sun had marked the paper and the dinosaurs where dark. Ben & Isabella thought that this was so fun!

 Beads and dragon teeth combined made great necklaces..

Ben using a different technique while creating this piece of art. Tearing his paper up and then gluing it onto the other paper. He created a volcano with hot lava shooting out at the top and pouring down the sides. Isabella and Cassie had already moved along, but Isabella did the same thing and had fun doing it!

 Proud artist!

Creating with clay was a fun (and messy!!!) station!

Cassie got to try pottery.

Messy but fun!

 Ben made Olaf from Frozen..

I think it looks like a beautiful bird, look at those eyes and beak, and even wings and tail feathers...but no, it's Olaf the snowman..

And Isabella made Elsa from Frozen.  

Lots of details, eyes, nose and lips, even worked on the hair to the side for the braid!

When they started to close up the stations later in the afternoon, we thought it was a great idea to have an ice cream before heading home. There are a lot of small little shops along the old town, and I never have the opportunity to look around here, many of them are not open regularly, especially the cute little interior design, home living and gift shops. So while the kids had their ice cream outside in the shade, I had a peak inside some of the stores, and one was especially cute, with nice little Christmas decorations.

 I thought these little pillow ornaments were so cute, I think I might have to go back and get them, I should have gotten them right away!

Inside the store, one could really get into the Christmas spirit, walking outside into the bright sunshine, the feeling soon went away. It was after all over 90F/32C that day!

Palm trees and bright blue skies instead of ever greens and snowy skies...

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

A Regular Sunday

Last Sunday, Chris got off with short notice, so I took the opportunity to get out without kids for a few hours. Peace and quiet and just stroll and look at things that I want to look at, be able to try things on, and without the constant complaining and whining...Such a bliss! Haha, maybe good that I said without kids, as it could be a misunderstanding there otherwise WHO is the one complaining...Anyway, I came home with a few things, and especially I liked this canvas that I think will fit well in our living room. Or, put it this way, it can be fitting in anywhere, as our living room is always changing due to the houses we live in...

I liked the canvas even better before I showed the kids where they were born..but what happened to Kansas?

Funny though, even if the kids are not with me, it's so much easier to shop for them. I came home with new jeans, leggings and shirts for Isabella and this shirt above for Cassie. When I came home in the afternoon, we made dinner and it was so delicious!!

Grilled bacon wrapped pork medallions 
with home made herb butter
served with lobster filled ravioli tossed in the pan with a hint of butter 
and dusted with Parmesan cheese.

After dinner, before sunset, we all needed to get out and move around, and the kids went on their bikes, and we played volleyball with Cassie. 

Chris ran and gave the kids extra speed back and forth on the street to their delight.

My family!

The sun sets already around 6pm here now, and it gets dark fast. But, as most of the nights, we get these beautiful colors lightening up the horizon over the neighborhood and over the Arizona desert.

Arizona sunsets are amazing!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Veteran's Day Outing

On Tuesday, it was Veteran's Day here in the US. In this school district, the kids were off school this day, which varies all around the country which days they actually are off. Last year, we spent the morning watching the parade in town, but this year, no one wanted to come along early morning for the Veteran's Parade, so we skipped it. Instead, I packed the picnic bag, blanket and bikes into the car and took the kids to the West Wetland Park on the other side of town, down by the Colorado River.

First stop when we parked the car, was to check out the Burrowing Owl Habitat and the Hummingbird Garden. There were no owls to be seen at this time, bright sunshine isn't really the time of day to see them, so we walked over to the Hummingbirds right away. It's really hard to get any birds in the picture, and I didn't bring the whole camera bag with my bigger lens, so I couldn't zoom in enough on them, but even if you can't see in most pictures, there were plenty of hummingbirds zooming by, fluttering their wings so very fast. They are so small, and so fast and they zoomed around our heads chasing each other at some points. But, almost impossible to catch in the pictures.

Ready for a day of fun in the sun!

Do you see it? In the middle of the picture with a black wing. 

This is a different kind, a more green color to this hummingbird. 

 Got one in the tree!

 Hummingbirds love Arizona!!

Lunch picnic in the shade before playing.

Playing soccer makes you thirsty!

Entrance to the playground "Castle Park"

After a long time in the sun and playing, we made a much needed stop by the ice cream truck.

Choose a spot in the shade by the pond.

After that, Cassie stayed on the picnic blanket, while I took the kids to the other playground just close by. Here we spent the last hour before heading home, playing and using up the last energy of this long day in the sun!

Three slides next to eachother, the one they loved the most was the "bumpy" one!

 Before packing up, Cassie snapped this group selfie of all of us! <3