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Science Rendezvous / Mother's Day Weekend

This weekend Brian was away at a LAN party with his friends.  This was two fold.  One, for a fun weekend away and two, he needed to get some friends to sign his passport paperwork to get his new passport done.
So, while he was away the kids and I enjoyed a fun day at the University of Ontario in Oshawa.  There was 4 fun filled hours of science.  While there was so much to do, I will list only a few of the highlights...
The kids had beakers filled with coloured water and dry ice, and placed bubbles on top to make dry ice bubbles.  (Fan favourite) They spent some time doing forensics using magnetic powder to see their finger prints.  They walked through a mock crime scene where they had to solve puzzles to find out who did it.  
There was a biodiversity dig where they discovered different rocks, and looked at cool bugs.
There was a dry ice rainbow that helped them to understand PH levels.  Acid versus base.  They put their hands on the fun electricity ball where they could watch the plasma follow their hand and even light up an LED light bulb just by them coming close to each other.
We made ice cream with liquid nitrogen, and butter with salt water and creamers and a little shaking.  
Easton loved the water rockets that he could set off.  We put mentos in diet coke and watched it explode.  The kids planted some flowers, and played with oobleck.  Hadley had fun with the clothes pins as she used them to pick up small pieces of feathers and other items to make a nest as a bird would.  They made structures out of jube jubes and tooth picks.  Then there was a fun trivia challenge from the day, and prizes were given out.  We only did about 3/4 of what was there.  So much fun FREE stuff to explore!  It was amazing!  
After we enjoyed dinner at McDonalds and this was followed by time at the blue park.  I had heard a lot of kids at school talking about it, so I decided to take the kids there, and sure enough... it was like I remember my childhood.  After dinner everyone goes to the park.  5 kids from Easton's class were there plus about 10 others from the school that I recognized.  Easton thought this was like an ultimate play date!  Hadley met Madeline who was visiting her grandma and they really hit it off.  
What a lovely day!  
Happy Mothers Day!

- Leanne Verkley

Ezmae

Brian's cousin Alex brought his new baby Ezmae to Paul's house yesterday and we mixed Daffodil-a-paloza with a baby shower.  The spring Verkley potluck was lovely despite the rainy weather.  We managed to go through the daffodil maze, play outside a little and still enjoy BBQ'd food (thanks to Paul) even with all the rain.
There were only a few vehicles that needed to be pulled out of the mud, but there was a lot of man power, so it was all good.  We fortunately were not stuck.
Ezmae is so cute and so little!  Both Hadley and Easton loved holding her.  Adina was a rockstar about letting my kids hold her.
There are so many little ones around now.  I love it!  

- Leanne Verkley

Niagara Falls

We were in Niagara Falls for the weekend.  Unplanned but necessary.  Brian was in Vegas all last week for work and while out one night, someone went into his hotel room and took his laptop bag.  In said bag was his work laptop, our good Nikon camera, all the lenses and camera accessories, and his passport.  Among other things, sunglasses etc.  
So, after Brian researched a few options to get home, boarding his flight on Air Canada was not one of them.  However, he was able to fly to Buffalo via United Airlines, take an Uber to the Rainbow bridge and walk across the border to meet us in Niagara Falls.  He had his birth certificate and drivers licence so he said walking across was easy.
When life gives you lemon, it is best to make lemonade.  
So, we took advantage of Brian's work covering the cost of the hotel, and made a mini vacation out of it.  We took the kids to Fallsview Indoor Waterpark.  
We got the two day pass and spent many hours enjoying the waterslides.  Hadley even did the waterslide that went basically straight down (even after my review of how it was so scary that I didn't want to do it again... she still wanted to do it... and then did it again with Brian)!
For the most part we rode down the slides on two people floating devices.  Hadley was got brave enough to do waterslides on her own a few times and even went down the bowl all by herself.  
What a great weekend of making memories.  We enjoyed beautiful weather walking by the falls, enjoying Hershey's chocolate just plain good family time.
I am thankful that Brian was able to cross the border easily.
Next up... figuring out insurance claims and filling out new passport forms.  

- Leanne Verkley

STEM Day

Today was a busy day for me at the school.  While I volunteer all the time... like three days a week... I usually only volunteer for less than 3 hours.  However, today I was there all day.  In the morning we prepped the bagels, eggs, cheese, and fruit and then sent it out the breakfast program for the entire school.   Then we got ready for the STEM day event.  We prepped more food and then after a short presentation in front of the parents who arrived, we as parents got to explore 4 different lego stations.  1. Bending Lego with 1X2 blocks.  Seeing how you can make a circle and other shapes.  Hadley later did this and made a crown.  Then we did Lego car races learning about aerodynamics.   We did Symmetry Lego on a board which Hadley's class also did later building something that was completely even on both sides.  Then we programmed Lego robots to move.  After this session we were free to go explore all the classrooms and their stem projects.  Like I said, Hadley did bending Lego and symmetry Lego.  Easton did Musical fruit electricity where he put a wire on his wrist that was set up to make an electrical connection through fruit and play an instrument as seen on a computer.  He also played pong and packman and other games in the same way.
There were lots of other things going on.  Marble runs, building cup towers, magnetic movement, building airplanes, virtual reality exploration and I think the day was enjoyed by all.

- Leanne Verkley

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