Tuesday, April 22, 2014

My favorite guys

Never too old

After a lovely Easter luncheon at friends house, we headed back home to enjoy the sunny weather. Shredding the Easter finery we headed to the park for some fun and play. Time together as a family is truly a gift.

Easter photo

We have a nice camera, it was a nice day, and everyone was in a good mood - the perfect set up for getting a good Easter picture; if only the tripod had not been packed already. Bob happily improvised and we used the dirty Pyrex pan to hold the camera while we posed in the local park.  We also made the boys pose on the front steps, and it is clear where Noah's head was - in the comics....
Since it was Easter we needed a serious photo, although the truth is quickly revealed when everyone is allowed to be him or herself ...

Unexpected win

Lukas has participate in a robotics team this spring, an activity that has offered many unexpected but valuable learning opportunities. This weekend the team had its qualifying competition. It was a welcome break from moving, a chance to let the body rest a bit, and allow the mind to do some working. Lukas fully expected this to be the end, only to come home with a first prize medal! Yes, his team is heading on to state competition in a few weeks. Life is full of surprises.


Thanks to kind friends who invited us over for Easter dinner, we did not have to celebrate another holiday among boxes. As we packed up our pantry, we found the ingredients for delicious spring cookies. It did not take much coaxing to get the boys to stop packing and start baking. Maybe  the potential for a  reward at the end spurred on their efforts...

Lukas' new digs

After hauling several loads over to the new house, we stopped the moving and began the unpacking. Lukas quickly got his room ready for occupancy, if only his bed was there...

Packing continue

Over the weekend we moved many boxes to the new house. Bob tied things to the roof, and the boys rode with boxes in their laps - all in an effort to make the move as easy and as quick as possible.

Mamma is armed...

This is a rarity, Mamma with her arms full of guns. She is loaded and ready for anything - especially another family move.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Spring is in the air

Sunday afternoon offer us the first signs of spring - the sun was shining, the winds were gentle, and everything suddenly looked a little greener. Noah and I took a walk after dinner, enjoying the tiny buds that are appearing on the trees and the sunset in the distance. We were not the only ones out, it appeared that 'everyone' was out for a nice evening stroll, Mount Clemens has come back to live!

Chef Noah strikes again

Noah wanted to experiment with what he could find in the cabinets - and since we are moving it is a good deed to clean out and use up everything.
He opted to create an ice cream pie which got such high acclaim from Lukas that he asked Noah to make him one for his birthday.

Friday pizza

Friday evening usually means pizza and some family fun - this week it meant pizza and some box packing...
Noah lived up the evening by a photo bomb pose - we can always count on him to make us laugh.


Friends of ours are raising leader dog puppies and invited us over to see the little ones. It is a good thing none of them are available....
As cute as the puppies are, electronics still trump everything in Lukas' world. To the delight of his friend, Lukas was able to fix a broken hand me down RC car, so puppies were ignored and wiring began. Once the car was functioning it was off to test it in the neighborhood. As I looked out the window, I could not help noticing the very white foot gear on Lukas, wondering what shoes he was wearing, only to realize the answer were no shoes, just white socks - or should I say x-white socks.

Amusement in boxes

We started to pack again. Lukas and Noah happily started off the process by packing part of the Lego room. When it was time for fun, they had to resort to colored wire all other 'fun things' were already packed. They are pretty efficient - I guess that comes with practice.

SHHHH.. please do not disturb

The boys were unusually quiet, and I began looking for them, only to find this:

Monday, April 7, 2014

Shooting range

The sunny weather on Sunday afternoon was such a lovely surprise. Lukas and Noah could not be enticed to join their parents on a walk in the neighborhood, but robotics and guns brought them outside for some Vitamin A. Noah set up his shooting range in the back yard and even used an old toy as part of his target practice. His aim appears pretty accurate....

Robot First

Lukas  has enticed his brother to join in the big Robot project. The sunny weather on Sunday proved the perfect opportunity to try out the robot outside. Lukas and Noah dissemble the robot and brought it down the stairs in pieces, it is far too heavy to be moved in one piece, although it is designed to fit snuggly in the back of the Honda. :-)
Noah took charge of the driving and Lukas, Mamma and Dad all had a chance to try out the new ride. Not wanting to be left out, Noah finally had a chance to ride, and the boys tried the capabilities of the robot on different surfaces - concrete vs wet muddy winter ruined grass - and to the boys delight the robot handled both well.
Lukas directed the robot from inside the house, as it drove around on the driveway, using a camera to see where it was. What is next? Not sure, but the automatic sweeper looks pretty good to me.


Lukas is working hard on the requirements for the Boy Scouts Merit Badge in cooking. He has spent hours creating meal plans, figuring out appropriate serving sizes, and calculating nutritional value of individual items and complete meals. He has shopped, making sure he does not exceed his budgeted amount and he has prepared and planned. This past weekend, he and Bob headed out with the Patrol to do some more of the requirements. One of the things that Lukas needed to do was cooking with a Dutch Oven, so he poured over recipes this past week, looking for suitable camp food that is cooked over charcoal in a Dutch Oven.

Friday morning he carefully acquired the needed items from the local grocery store, and Bob assisted by shopping for the vegetables on his way home. The prices at the local grocery is far higher than the Fruit and Vegetable Market we frequent and every penny counts when there is a set amount.

Lukas spent Friday afternoon chopping, cutting, slicing, and sauteing in preparation for the weekend. His first meal to cook was Friday evening, light meal/Cracker Barrel. He settled on a Vegetable Stew to accommodate one of his patrol members who does not eat meat, yet satisfied the carnivores by serving the meat on the side.  The Cracker Barrel - ie late night snack - was a Pineapple Cherry Cobbler cooked in the Dutch Oven. Judging by the lack of leftovers, the Cobbler was a success. The stew hit the spot to keep everyone warm on an extremely windy evening, 30-40 mph making it almost impossible to light the fire. However, a true Scout is always ready, and Bob saved the evening with a can of liquid fuel to help get the fire going.

Lukas spent Saturday exploring the area and also fashioned a chair from sticks, ropes and tarp. He enjoyed himself in his new comfortable chair, watching the fire and staying warm while other scouts cooked up Saturday meals.

Sunday morning, thin layer of ice on everything, Lukas climbed out of his tent and set out to make breakfast. Another Dutch Oven recipe that attracted a lot of attention, not a morsel was brought home.

Back home, Bob and Lukas had to clean up, air out and wash away smoke. Fortunately, the weather cooperate and the sun came out, and the light breeze helped in the clean up.