Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Life Cycle of Newts, and Dora and Boots

A couple more NYE pics, playing the Oink game...


...Squidge's turn at the 'wiggle the ping pong balls out of the tissue box game...


...playing Boom Boom Balloon (awesome game!!!)...



...and daaancin' :)


We spent New Year's Day at the kids' grandparents' house, and they played lots with the puppet theatre again.


Sprout did an 'under the sea' show, featuring an octopus, a parrot, a cow fish and a pig fish. 


He thought it brilliant when I showed him that there actually are cowfish and pigfish :)




Moppet looked through the year's photo book with her grandpa.


When we got home she watched some Dora with Gruff.


Sprout played some Little Big Planet 3 and wanted to know what 'what a tangled web we weave' meant and why.


We successfully made blue candy floss!


We did a New Year's Eve rerun with midnight at about seven o clock so no one was asleep. The boys filled the piƱata back up and gruff taped it shut.


We put a countdown on the computer and lit the sparklers on the New Year's Eve cake :)


The next day Moppet played with lots of dough...


...while the boys played on Little Big Planet 3 together.


We all went out to Subway, where Moppet was excited about the paper dress up dolls that came with her meal...


...and the boys and I tied our minds in knots with the paper aeroplane sets that came with theirs. 


The day after, I caught up on some one on one time with each of them when Gruff was off work. Moppet wanted to go to a Frozen singalong, so off we went, and very theatrical she was too :)


Squidge wanted to see the new Night at the Museum film which was fab, and he loved that he recognised the British Museum from when we went last year. He wants to go back and try and find some of the exhibits that were animated for the film!


Sprout wanted us to go to Subway again as he wanted to try the Spicy Italian, which got his seal of approval before scarfing down a footlong turkey, back and cheese flatbread :O


He enjoyed doing the 'how to draw cartoons' activity book too.


Back at home Sprout and Squidge invented a Hearthstone-type game with the Skylanders cards that come with the figures.


The next day was Gruff's chance to do the same, so he started off by taking Sprout to the arcade...



...then took Moppet out for a drive in his van and a Happy Meal...



...then he and Squidge had a big game of Skylanders and then went through the boys' Skylanders collection and catalogued the upgrade level that they'd reached  so far for each character in-game so they knew where to focus their energies. 


Sprout spent some time looking at our Open University British Year poster, and wanted to know about the newt's life cycle.


Squidge wanted to know what animals/plants/fungi we might see soon, so we've planned to go to Cannock Chase next week and have a look for them.


He and Moppet had a big dancing session.


After a morning in where we watched Iron Man, and Moppet played with stickle bricks and Boggle dice, and the boys played Skylanders and Little Inferno, we had an afternoon at Just Kidding soft play for a friend's birthday, and they went on the quad bikes (Moppet too, although she wasn't very happy about having me as her compulsory co-driver!). In the car on the way we chatted about energy and light and frogs and hibernation. 


On the drive home Moppet wanted to play one of her favourite games, where we each choose to be a character off Dora, and I narrate the journey like a Dora adventure, songs, trolls, Swiper, "Can you say...?" and all. Moppet is usually Boots, and does the best "Swiper, no swiping!" ever :)
Back at home Sprout went on Lost Islands and was reading me the back stories of all the characters.


Sprout and I researched some foods he could make off video games, while Squidge and Gruff built a solar robot scorpion kit.


We went to a bit of a chilly home ed park meet up and met a new local home ed family which was nice.



Sprout stalked this squirrel in the hope of getting a photo, but he was a speedy little bugger :)


We whizzed back over to their grandparents' house after the park so they could watch the chimney sweep.


They all made some background scenery for the puppet theatre.


The boys had a big game of hide and seek with their grandpa.


They each put on a puppet show with their scenery.



Squidge built a little Lego set.


At home Moppet made some Peppa Pig muddy puddle cakes.



Then Sprout made toad in the hole, of which he was very proud :)


We had a chilled day in the next day. Sprout had asked if I could find some old episodes of Bamzooki, which I did (although he's a bit sad that the old Bamzooki designer PC program is now defunct as he loved using it.)


Afterwards Squidge asked me to find the NHM Alive programme again, and we all watched that, and there was lots of chat about the bits they each remembered and the bits they remembered from the museum itself. We chatted about fossils and evolution and CGI, and about whether sloths are very similar to bears. Sprout talked about angler fish and a giant in-game one he'd come across.
Afterwards they wanted to see the guinea pig dance from Dr Dolittle, so we found it on YouTube and Sprout tried to teach Squidge how to do it.


Sprout observed that most people who are homeless that he sees are men, and wondered why, so we came up with a couple of thoughts in terms of risk factors and safety nets, and then looked it up once we were home.


Sprout constructed a wings skeleton out of EZ Fort parts, and thought about how to upholster them.


Sprout and Squidge collaborated on a bit of Skylanders stop motion animation, then Sprout did a video that he's going to put on YouTube, and told me some ideas he had for making a channel.



Later Sprout made some doughnuts and a big batch of spaghetti bolognese.



Moppet played for a while on Endless Alphabet.


Squidge played on SoundBrush,


...while Sprout played on some new Terraria servers we found.


We saw the most amazing double rainbow (not done a bit of justice by this photo!)...


...and Sprout started making a Superman Toca Mini...


...and Squidge and Moppet played on some car design apps.



We spent the afternoon at Come Into Play with friends. There's a cartoon woodland scene in the toddler area, and while we were watching Moppet, Sprout noted the difference between the rabbits and the hares, and asked why they're so similar but so different at the same time, so we talked about evolution and looked up info about their niches.

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