Wednesday, February 25, 2009

What The.....

The most bizarre thing you will most likely see today, the Barreleye Fish, Macropinna microstoma.

Quote of the Day

Q and Ozzi are wrestling around, Ozzi goes bonk, and Ozzi starts to cry.

Q: "Sorry Ozzi."

He picks up a nearby toy and hands it to Ozzi.

Q: "Here's a little somethin' for your trouble."

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Information Regurgitation

A few more things found on the internets that I think are worth passing on.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Monday, February 16, 2009

Surf's Up

Yet another tool for my quest to have my boys win the National Geography Bee someday.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Speaking Of MIT

We've been updating/playing with Q's XO Laptop a lot over the last few days.

Q: "Who made my 'puter?"
Me: "It was designed by people at a university called MIT. It's a school where you learn how to create and invent super-cool new computers, robots, and stuff."
Q: "Can I go to school there?"
Me: "Absolutely. You work hard enough you can go where ever you want."

Then someday you can invent a new toy that is so awesome it makes a stay at home dad almost shit his pants when he watches the video of you showing it off at TED just like David Merrill did today.

Lazy Friday Link Dump

Yesterday was Charles Darwin's 200th Birthday and all week GeekDad has been celebrating with all sorts of naturally selected posts about introducing young minds to the fascinating world of Evolution.

MIT Media Lab does it again with Topobo, a robot toy that is brilliant in its simplicity.

Leonardo's Basement makes me wish the boys would grow up even faster.

Monday, February 9, 2009

My Funny Valentine

I am not a big fan of what Valentine's Day has become. I don't deplore romance or flowers or even the occasional tacky gift and I think it's good for us to have a day reserved to remind us to show a little love. My issue with Valentine's Day is the lazy consumerism of it all. IMHO Valentines Day is a holiday for simple handmade expressions. Flowers and chocolates are fine but apply a little creativity and personalization to it in some way. Valentine's Day was made for crayons, scissors, and glue sticks.

One year I made a "Vouchers Of Love" coupon book to go with a few bottles of K8's favorite wine. Another year I bought 50 Spider-Man valentines, wrote a different little note on each one, and hid them all over in K8's stuff. This year most of my handmade efforts have gone to Q's valentines for preschool.

Thank God for ArtScraps and small class sizes!

The one plan for K8 this year I will disclose is two tickets to Romeo & Juliet at The Children's Theatre Company.

Droppin' Science

Q's ever-growing interest in the world around him is really beginning to play into my dorky hands. Not that I have an extensive scientific knowledge, I just love discovery and I seem to be passing that on to Q. He gets almost as excited as I do about discovering something new, even if it only holds his attention for 5 seconds before he runs off to something else.

After Q watched an episode of Curious George in which George did something similar, he told me he wanted to put nuts and seeds in some water, freeze it, and put it out for the squirrels to chip away at. Quite entertaining!

The Science Museum of Minnesota here in St. Paul has catered to our schedule and returned their Preschool Playdate to Monday mornings. Sweet. This will probably motivate us to finally add them to our stack of membership cards. Until then, they still offer Children's Museum members reciprocity during the Preschool Playdate. The new Water exhibit is pretty cool with the water vapor entrance being the highlight for Q.

From what I've seen on YouTube and a few blogs, A LOT of parents took advantage of the extreme cold over the past month or so with the throwing a cup of really hot water into the air to make an instant "cloud" trick. We did too. Q's Oh's and Ah's were worth the minor frostbite. We never did get bubbles to freeze though.

A parent of a preschooler is only as good as his tools... or is that a carpenter? I don't remember. Anyway, we've recently acquired a few useful "instruments of science". Both boys have been having a lot of fun playing with a small prism we got. Q has been begging for a magnifying lens for a few weeks now so I finally caved when he found one with two LEDs on it for less than $5 at the Science Museum. Now he spends many of Ozzi's nap times inspecting our small rock, fossil, shell, and coral collection we have to keep out of reach while Ozzi's awake. The best new tool of all is my new G1 phone. With mobile access to Wikipedia, YouTube, Google Maps, etc. there is no question that Q can ask that I can't answer right on the spot. Awesome!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Food Ingredient Decoder

This food ingredient decoder from Kashi is a handy resource online to help you understand what all those ingredients in little Timmy's Fruit Loops are.

Raising Minnesota

This past weekend Q and I made it out to Medicine Lake for the Art Shanty Project. Since then I've been pondering getting involved next year and trying to build an ice shack of my own. I have no idea what I would do but you know it would be kid oriented.

You still have a little bit of time to make it out onto the ice to check out the wackiness for yourself. It all ends Feb. 14.

Monday, February 2, 2009


It was a rough weekend. K8 spent the whole weekend with a nasty sinus headache that just wouldn't let go. Ouch.

Ozzi has a giant welt in the center of his forehead. It looks like the corner of the coffee table has converted him to Hinduism. Maybe Ganesha will make his new cold go away. Double ouch.

I have a wonderful little bruise across the bridge of my nose after being attacked by my ladder while trying to force it into a pile of snow and ice. Though considering the level of disregard for my personal safety while I attempted to remove the ice dams on our roof, I should consider myself lucky that's all I got, but still, ouch.

K8 has been doing a damn good job balancing a demanding career with getting in quality time with the boys. Yet Q, it seems, has entered a catholic mother phase in which he has taken it upon himself to break K8's will with guilt. I don't know how many times Q told K8 to, "Go to work for just a little bit then come home." All of my attempts to explain why mom has to go to work, that he's lucky to see her as much as he does, and that for many kids both parents go to work everyday are disregarded. The cliche "starving kids in Africa" speeches swim just below the surface. Then this morning Q and I have this conversation.
"Papa, Barack Obama lives in the White House?"
"Yep, now that he's president he lives in the White House."
"And he works in the White House too?"
"Yeah, his office is in the White House too."
He ponders this for a few seconds, making connections.
"Papa, I want MomMom to be president."
"Umm, No. No you don't."