Get Your Dogs Ready, It’s the Iditarod! by Avy

dscn4843When our cousins were here, we started studying the Iditarod.  Asher and I each chose a musher to follow once the Iditarod starts.  We’ll keep track of their daily progress, noting their 27 checkpoint times.  I chose an 19 year old girl named Melissa Owens.   Asher chose a man named Ed, from McMillan, Michigan.

dscn4847We read about the Aurora Borealis and looked at pictures of it on the computer and then painted our own Northern Lights.

dscn4845We did an experiment with “body fat” (really vegetable shortening) to show how it insulates animals and why Eskimos and Alaskans find it so necessary.  I pretended that I was a baby penguin.

dscn4877My mom bought me this book and we decided to start an indoor tabletop garden, using a yam, turnip, potato, carrot, and parsnip.  The book is really awesome!  Start saving your egg containers to put your special treasures in.  You can also paint them with beautiful colors that make you feel like you’re in paradise.


This week we also did an experiment on Chemiluminescence using light sticks.


My Trip to the Caribbean By Asher


Since it is very cold in the winter, we decided to pack our bags and go to Cancun, Mexico.  We stayed at a very nice resort.  The new Grand Oasis Caribbean, which is  right on the Caribbean Sea.


It has 2 swim-up bars and 3 pools.


One day we took the bus to the Cancun Interactive Aquarium.  It was very cool.  We got to see dolphins, sharks, and lots of other sea life.


At our hotel there is something called the Oasis Runaway Program. It is if you stay at an Oasis Resort you can go to any one of the other Oasis resorts, but if you stay at a Grand Oasis Resort you can go to any of the Oasis and Grand Oasis resorts. So one day that’s what we did.  We took the bus to the Grand Oasis Cancun.


We swam in, or I should say survived the Caribbean.  The waves were huge.  I got knocked down a ton of  times.  But it was fun.  At Grand Oasis Cancun there was a huge swimming pool.


One day, we took a bus, then a taxi, and then a ferry, (and that all cost only $6) to an island off Cancun, called Isla Mujeres.  We had been practicing our Spanish a lot and when we were in line for the ferry, there was a McDonald’s and Avy and I really wanted french fries.  We asked our mom, and she said that if we wanted to use our Spanish and go order some, we could.  First we had to ask how much they were and then we had to go back to mom and get the pesos.


The main transportation on the island is golf carts and mopeds, because the island is only 1/2 mile wide by 4 miles long.  We rented a golf cart for an hour and drove all around the island.  My dad drove because you have to be 16 to drive, otherwise I would have driven it.  It was a very nice island.  I did not want to leave it.  The scenery was beautiful.


We bought homemade ice cream from a street vendor.  It was delicious!


Right before we came back to cold, snowy Michigan, I had to have one last drink at the bar.  It was 7-up.

Let’s Study Mexico! by Avy


Hola amigos!  We decided to take a “field trip” to Mexico!  So of course we had to study Mexico’s history, culture, geography, that kind of stuff.  We spent 2  weeks making, cooking, crafting, and studying.  I made cinnamon oranges, (slice oranges into little suns, sprinkle with cinnamon and powered sugar) a pinata for our fiesta, and painted pots in bright Mexican colors!



We worked on a HUGE Mexican flag.  Asher is an awesome artist, so he drew the eagle crest on the flag.  We did some Mexican Folk tin art.  We made a sun and a cactus.  We made a few papel picados every day to hang in our fiesta room, otherwise known as the dining room.  By the end of our study, they were hanging everywhere!



We sculpted magical Aztec Suns out of clay.


We also made homemade corn tortillas.  They were so yummy with cheese on them!

At the end of our study we had a big fiesta with our next door neighbors, Sarah and Johnathan.  We had Mexican food, broke open our pinata, and played Carmen San Diego






Haiku Poetry by Avy

Haiku Poems

by Avy

Sunshine lights the skies

Clouds darken the skies in gray

Rain starts, pit-patters

Fiestas are fun

Pretty dresses wave around

Candles light the paths

Art at the Gardens by Avy


We went to the grand opening of  Jonathan Borofsky’s new exhibit. I thought his speech was pretty interesting as a matter of fact.  He showed us some slides of his artwork, and told us that some of his sculptures were 100 feet tall!  My favorite sculpture was called “Walk To The Sky”.


When we went to the tropical conservatory later,  we were the only ones there. It was pretty cool and  there were almost no lights.  Asher and I kept jumping out and scaring each other and mom and dad.


Chilhuly made this grand, beautiful, breathtaking sight.  This glass chandelier is over 20 feet tall.  And I know the secrets of how he made it, because we watched a DVD about his art work.   My mom said that she loved his bright clothing.  He wore lime green pants and a turquoise shirtMy dad would never wear those clothes and I say that’s a shame! When it gets warmer out, my mom and I are going to make a glass sculpture for our garden, inspired by his sculptures.   I’ll be sure to post a picture of it when it’s done.

These are more of  Borofsky’s works of art.  They are called “Male/Female.”  They are the same, but they have beautiful, different colors.



Inaugaration Day by Asher


On Inauguration Day, we went to the Gerald R. Ford Museum to watch President Obama get sworn in.  They  had their movie theater open to the public to watch it on TV.  Then we got to listen to his speech.


The theater was packed so we had to sit on the floor.

dscn4533 They also had cookies shaped like the White House and punch.  They were delicious.


This is the White House in Minature  exhibit.  It was very realistic. The movie theater had a movie going and there was a fake fire in the fire place. It was a great day.

Winter Baking Traditions by Avy


Rice Pudding. Yum!  One of our Swedish traditions is Rice Pudding.   A tradition started a long time ago in Sweden was  that on Christmas Eve they would make Rice Pudding  and put an almond in it, and whoever got the almond in their rice pudding, their wish would come true.   Pops (my grandpa) and I always make it together.


Another tradition is klienjer.   We even make our own dough. One of my favorite parts is dunking the fried cookie in powdered sugar.  This is a Danish tradition that my great grandma taught me.  We only make it at Christmas time because it takes all afternoon to make it and we have to put it outside in the cold to freeze before we fry them.


SWEET smelling Christmas ornaments!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


SNOW CREAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! AWESOME. Yum. Makes my mouth water!  But only use freshly fallen snow!