Thursday, April 22, 2010

What I did last weekend - Santa Monica Mountains Science Festival

This is what I did last weekend

It was AWESOME. We spent months preparing although Lena Lee and Cathy Schoonmaker did most of the work. I designed some of the science activities for kids, called community centers to arrange buses, and helped put up flyers. On Friday I ran 32 fifth graders through a hands-on science activity comparing native plant diversity in native and non-native plant communities. I even had them make and analyze bar graphs to draw conclusions. On Saturday I staffed the nature illustration table having kids draw bugs as accurately as possible and took a two hour shift at the story telling booth.

It was GREAT! Over 2000 people came on Saturday and all the kids had a blast. The event was incredibly diverse with a ton of first time park goers. We really fulfilled the mission of an urban park with this event, introducing thousands of people to THEIR national park.

A news article on the event can be found here
A few more photos here

Little House Update - New Deck to Connect to the Big House

I think we are finally in the home stretch on the little house. Here are some pictures from two weeks ago when Mitch finished up the deck to connect the little house to the big house. The color of decking that we used on the deck several years ago when we made put it in so we picked a color that would look good with our original color.

Since then, Mitch and Seth installed the hardwood floor. I kept asking Mitch if he wanted to rent a nail gun. Finally the bending nails annoyed him so much that he did rent a nail gun. The compressor crapped out at first but once he got a new compressor, they had the floor done lickety split. It looks great. I'll take some photos this weekend.

Remaining tasks: paint trim near roof; finish metal siding; fix door stop; put back in door locks; put in window sills for outside upper windows; touch up paint on doors and inside; put in molding on hardwood floor; install fancy plywood under eaves.

Maybe two more weekends? Maybe three. Then, finally, fix up the yard!


This morning I took some time off and hung out with the girls. They decided to paint in the back yard. You can tell their age differences and maybe a bit of their personality in their paintings and also how their paint trays looked when they were done. Lucy is so neat these days she didn't even get any paint on her clothes. It cracks me up that she now draws more of your stereotypical little kid pictures. She loves drawing hearts. This is the first time that I have seen her draw one of those classic kid sun pictures. I don't where they get the idea to draw a sun like that. This is also the first time I have seen her draw a rainbow.

He's not trying to cause any trouble...

JoJo reading one of her four different versions of Peter Pan.
LuLu still loves princesses. Here she is with her Easter unicorn.
My little princesses....

Lucy still loves the princesses. She wants to have a princess party for her birthday and recently went to a princess tea party at Barnes and Noble with Mitch and JoJo. Josie also likes the princesses and likes to dress up and wear one her 30 princess dresses and 4 tiaras. BUT Josie's real love these days is...Captain Hook. She has talked to his family and reports that they say that they are all "good pirates" She told Mitch that Captain Hook is not a bad guy, he's not trying to cause any trouble. When I asked her why she likes Captain Hook so much she said that he is a little bit scary and she likes to be scared.

Mitch is convinced now that in high school she will date tattooed smokers and will be convinced that they are simply misunderstood...