Tuesday, July 15, 2014

All Day Harry Potter Marathon

List Items - #14, #16, #26, #29, #28, #33, and #77

Item #14 - Have breakfast in bed

With DH having to work nights we don't often all wake up at the same time. But due to an over-crowded schedule the day before, we were able to plan it so that the day started early for everyone. We were all still up in stages, but close enough that we could actually eat breakfast together! But we wanted to get started on the movies so we made a giant bed in the middle of the living room on which to have breakfast! I made homemade donuts and we sat down to the movie!

Combined Items #16 - Have a scavenger hunt AND #26 - Have a movie series marathon

We have been trying all summer to find a movie series that we could get our hands on without having to shell out a ton of money and that we could all agree on. It was a hard one! Finally we came across Harry Potter! Jareth had not yet seen them all but was willing to since he had liked the first one and my sister happened to have all of them! But then we decided to take it a step further, give him something to focus on for each movie, and have a little fun with them. So we did a scavenger hunt, making him "unlock" each movie with something to find! He loved it! Here are the movies we were able to make it through.
[NOTE: I do not recommend long series with younger kids, they get antsy. As you will see we went outdoors and did something to stretch between each movie and therefore did not finish the series.]

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

I know the "stone" is the wrong color, but we used only items we already had in the house! This is my quartz crystal.

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

The only problem with this one was of course Jareth wanted to read my journal to find out what it said! But we distracted him with the movie!

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

We had to give him a couple of clues since he had no idea yet what a time turner was, but it was still great fun!

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

While this object was in plain sight, as they all were, it was high up and hard to reach. We gave him a lot of help with it!

And that was as far as we got since the in between activities took up time. But the kids sure crashed hard when it was time for sleep.

Item #77 - Go to the park

During the first movie we had a lot of things go on with breakfast and a friend coming to stay the day with us so I took the kids over to the park for a little play time just as they were sorting the students. When we got back they were more than ready to sit down and enjoy the first movie.

Item #29 - Play Frisbee

After the first movie the the kids needed to get out again, so we went downstairs to play a little frisbee! It was fun, got the kids running, and was still not too hot! But we came back in wanting water and rest! Perfect for the next movie!

Item # 28 - Have a picnic

A perfect way to get away after movie number two was lunch, and with the heat starting to take over we decided to take it outside. DH was tired so we left him at home with the infant I was watching and I took the other kids to an open area of grass. But the heat had us hightailing it back home to lay the younger ones down for a nap and start the next movie!

Item #33 - Blow Bubbles

With movie number 3 done the little ones began waking up from their naps and one of them was about to go home, so we stepped out onto the porch for a little fun! We have an old bubble-sax that we obtained in a garage sale, so we poured in the liquid and made a little music, with each of the kids getting a turn.

And after the last movie we took the kids (our two and the lovely miss Jayden who is practically ours) over to the pool for a little sunset swim. The water was warm and a little high since it had just rained, but it wasn't too hot outside. So we enjoyed some family time there. (Sorry no pictures because we were not sure if we were going to get caught in rain!)

All in all it was a great day! We checked off a lot of items and got to enjoy the company of a friend who we don't get to see as often anymore. And then there is the joy of sharing something you love so much with your kids. I found myself watching Jareth more often than the movies to see his reaction to things. Maybe in a few years when Livia is old enough to get the movies we will have another marathon! I look forward to that as much as I did to this day that was 2 weeks in the planning.
Have you had a movie series marathon with your little ones? Or are you looking forward to sharing some particular fandom that you love and can't wait to get them caught up in? It will be Lord of The Rings for us next year! It's so much fun!
[Note: We will be finishing the series over the next few days, Jareth and I since DH has work. I will post another blog on Sat about the last four hunt items and Jareth's final take on the series!]

Saturday, July 5, 2014

4th of July Celebration

List Items #2 and #81

(Unforunately DH was unable to attend due to work. Our first family event without him :(  )

Every year we gather at my parents' house in the country, located on 2+ acres of land outside of city limits it is the perfect place to have a 4th of July party! There are always plenty of people gathered, a lot of laughter, and the fireworks are always interesting (usually accompanied by at least one small "incident" to keep us on our toes and give us something to talk about until the next holiday involving explosives!) This year however plans were changed due to unfortunate events, and so we decided to move the party to a local festival. So after having dinner with my Dad and Stepmom, we packed the kids up and trekked out to Tioga for some fun. 

List Item #81 - Attend a festival

With some booths set up, donations for the local Fire Department, and an awesome live band, we were glad to be able to attend this festival. We took blankets and chairs to set out a spot to watch the fireworks, and spent the time talking to friends and letting the kids run themselves ragged! They were so happy that NaNa got them glow sticks!

And with the place growing increasingly crowded, Jareth discovered a new friend when the girl next to us got her own light stick and joined in the chase! Over the next hour or so as we waited for dark, Jareth and the little girl (whose name I failed to catch) discovered more things they had in common between rounds of tag. And when the fireworks did start, they were eager to share a blanket and talk about the night.

Item # 2- Watch the fireworks

Livia and I cuddle on the blanket and watched the fireworks going off nearly above our heads. It was a wonderful display that seemed to go on forever in beautiful colors that lit of the sky. I loved watching Livia point to the sky as her favorite went off and hearing Jareth and his new friend talking about the just behind me. A memory that will forever stay with me is the sound of little voices talking as the little girl commented :"This has been the best day." And Jareth replied with "Yeah, for me too."

It was an amazing night and the kids had such a blast! I hope everyone of you had a wonderful night as well! Can I ask, did anyone else tear up at the festivities? Maybe it is coming from Texas with a strong since of loyalty to state that made me so gushy, but I couldn't help shedding a few tears as they sang the national anthem and the fireworks began. Maybe I am of a dying breed of Americans that feels a strong sense of pride as the fireworks go off and I can't help letting my overactive imagination drift to thoughts of the war we fought for freedoms we all seem to take for granted. Whatever it is, last night was one of those nights that touches my heart every year, and I hope I am not the only one! 

So I will leave you with a few pictures of fireworks that won't do the show justice. Feel free to share yours, or your feelings about this time of the year. Just remember, keep it sweet! Love you all! And a Happy Independence Day to you!