Saturday, July 10, 2010

Flipping Ducks

Ed, the kids, and I spent much of today volunteering at the Arts Council's Kidfest event.  We did it last year too, and whined enough afterwards about sitting in the blazing sun that this year the ducks were situated under a pavilion.  We also had the bubble table, a job entailing keeping dishes filled with bubble stuff.  The ducks are much higher maintenance.  They insist on going "heads down, tails up," and no amount of setting them firmly in the water will convince them, which means that it is pretty darned easy to pick a duck with a star on his tummy and win a prize.  Not that it really makes much difference, as there is no charge for the games, and when the kids somehow manage not to pick a star-tummied duck at the first try, we just have them try again 'til they succeed.  Last year, this lack of challenge, plus the blazing sun, meant that the ducks were not one of the most popular activities.  This year, though, we were giving these out as one of our prize choices...
Those are Silly Bands, and, according to Travis, they are "The Fad."  I think he must be right, because we had kids (and some of them pretty big kids) busily flipping ducks to win Silly Bands all day.  The kids collect them and wear them on their wrists.  On the one hand, I don't get the appeal of wearing colored rubber bands, but on the other hand I had a great time making up answers when they asked me, "What is this one?"  They're sort of like one of those Rorschach tests, where you look at a puddle of ink and try to decide what it looks like.  For instance, the pink one on the bottom is a sea anemone.  Only, funnily, the older kids seemed to think that they knew what the shapes were, and they never were what I thought they were.  A couple of them told me that my sea anemone was a crown.  Right.
Here Travis is, demonstrating the bubble making apparatus.
And me, with the duck pond.  Those green bags held prizes of various sorts, and I hope they won't use gift bags to hold the prizes again next year because many of the kids, reasonably enough, thought that we were giving them the whole bag when we held it out for them to choose a prize.
Me, again.
And Ed.
We were right next to the water balloon toss, with the results you would expect.  It was warm enough that being splashed from time to time was quite nice.
There were some enormous blow-up slides and climbing houses, and Katie did a lot of playing and a little volunteering.  Travis was a harder worker, but also found time to eat four hot dogs with the works, three snow cones, and chips.  They had a good time.
Our friends who played at the Fourth of July celebration were also playing here.  That little blonde toddler was dancing and dancing on the lawn to the music, just as cute as she could be.

Katie didn't care for the hot dogs, but ate so many snow cones that I lost track (the food was free for volunteers, even those who only worked sporadically).  And she was so pleased with her face paint (which only looks blurring because my lens is dirty).

And a couple pictures from last week...
Doesn't Travis look happy with his science reading?  He said it was interesting (I bought a bunch of Prentice Hall Science Explorer books, used, to fill out the somewhat skimpy Singapore textbooks), but when I asked him to tell me about mitosis he admitted that he had "only skimmed it."  Which is why he will be outlining his science reading for a while and has only himself to thank for the extra work.

Diagramming sentences is always delightful, but it is even more fun when you can brandish a pitchfork while you do it!

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