Friday, July 29, 2011

Bunny Tales

So a friend of ours (who also helped us find/get Shadow and Maddie) works for a vet's office as a Vet Tech. Someone brought in this baby bunny that lost it's Mother to a large(r) dog. She tried to help it recover, but in the end it didn't make it. It sure was cute though.
Giving it milk through an eye dropper.

Cub Scout Spring Campout

Jarin's Cub Scout Pack had their Spring campout in March. Mr. C roasted a pig. It was delicious. He's carving it in this photo. We didn't stay at the campground as the weekend it was held, coincided with Special meeting, so it didn't work out this time. Fortunately, it's only about 20 minutes from our house, so we were able to make it for the day/evening.
That evening, Justin's Troop held the "Arrow of Light" for the Webelos who had reached the AOL status. It's really a neat ceremony to watch. The Boy Scouts dress up as indians and call Akela to welcome the boys who are "worthy" to Boy Scouts.
Justin with the AOL crew from his Troop (lantern light isn't good).

School scenes

In between weekend events, I spent a lot of time up at Justin's Middle School snapping pictures. This was in Justin's art class. Busy working on masks and getting caught up.
Justin with buddies, Anthony, Collin, & Mack

Maddie is 1!

Although we don't know the exact date of her birth, we do think she was born in Feb./March time, so this year we celebrated her 1st birthday. She got a card from her boy and a gift.

Justin even made her a doggy cake out of a recipe he found and we had to sing Happy Birthday to her.

USS Lexington

Jarin's Cub Scout Pack went to Corpus Christie in February to spend the night on the retired USS Lexington Ship.
The bunks where they slept (Sorry for the poor quality. Looks like the lighting was to blame)
Going down the steep stairs

He loved all the planes & helicopters

Trying to land a fighter jet
How do I steer this thing?
The evening flag ceremony

In the morning the boys woke up and had breakfast (he had hot chocolate)

Monday, July 25, 2011

Merit Badge University

In February Mike took Jarin to Corpus Christie for a Cub Scout Campout on the Lexington Battleship. Justin had some Merit Badge classes at Texas A&M University in College Station, so he and I went the other direction.
While he was in class, I toured George Bush Sr.'s Presidential Library/Museum.
A wax figure of Bush parachuting, a favorite hobby of his.
Inaguaral gowns of the President's wives
A WW2 fighter plane. A tribute to his military service.
I was impressed that as a child he was a Cub Scout!
His boat
A&M has a tradition of building bonfires to celebrate their games against their rival, University of Texas (UT). While the original bonfires started as nothing more than a little pile of trash, they have grown to immense size. In 1999, twelve students died, when the pile of burning logs collapsed. It was a terrible tragedy to lose 12 prominent college students. A&M has installed a memorial wall with a poem.
Then you are able to walk out to the original memorial site. It's a large circle, that is the width of the original bonfire. Each pillar is dedicated to one student who perished. Their pictures are included as well as any quotes, memories etc. from their families. It's a very moving experience to see it.
Back in the Engineering hall, this is the crowd that showed up for the day. Scouts, leaders, parents, students etc. The classes are taught by university students. Justin earned his Chemistry and Geocaching merit badges here.
Also while he was in class, I went for a run around campus. It's a nice campus. They also have this small bonfire statue by the football field.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Aviation Merit Badge-Boy Scouts

Just a word on Scouting...
When our kids started school, we agreed to let them do one extra curricular activity and one only. Justin chose Scouting and Jarin followed with the same a few years later. I know some parents who try to do more than one activity, but as you can tell with the past few months of posts, we're happy that the boys chose one and one only as Scouting keeps us very busy during the school year. We're very pleased with the Scouting program and what it entails. Our boys have learned so much outside of regular school curriculum. What other program covers so many topics. How many 10 year olds know how to check oil in a car, change a flat tire (car or bike), fly a plane, start a fire with minimal supplies, or build something out of wood? It's really an extension of what they are learning in school, but more like common sense subjects that they will use all throughout life. Both Mike and I volunteer in various capacities with the program because as with school activities, it's been shown that kids do much better with parental support. Sometimes I think we throw ourselves into it a little too much, but I keep reminding myself that in a few short years our kids will be gone off to college and if we don't support them now, we'll wish we did then. Besides, I'd be lying if I didn't say we don't enjoy some of it just a tad as much as they do. Camping, fishing, hiking, rock climbing, activities with friends...It just doesn't get too much better than that!

About this post: Mike's cousin, Mark E. is a pilot. He flies crop dusting planes just South of where we live. Around the holidays, Mike asked him if he'd like to teach the Aviation Merit Badge. He was more than happy to help and I think he enjoyed the chance to share his love of flying. Part of the badge entailed the boys flying the plane by themselves (with Mark's supervision) for 15 minutes each. They all enjoyed their time down there!
Going over the dynamics of flying
Inspecting the engine of the plane
Inspecting the wings of a leer jet and explaining wind dynamics
Mark and Justin check the engine
All the boys who participated with Mark
Mark did a few fly by's with water in his tank to demonstrate what he does
When they were finishing up, they went over to see the ultralights
It was a great day for the boys!

Court of Honor-February; Boy Scouts

Justin's Troop held their Court of Honor in February. Justin received a few more Merit Badges to add to his sash.

February Blue & Gold Banquet-Cub Scouts

In February, Jarin's Pack held their annual Blue and Gold Banquet. The award ceremony was held at the church, then followed by dinner and magic at a local restaurant.
Jarin and Corbin
Mike is Cubmaster, so he held the main ceremony
Jarin and I. He is now a Wolf!
The 4 from Jarin's Den (Ethan, Jarin, Joshua and Corbin)
Mike & Jarin
Dessert for the banquet featured a cake bake with prizes going to 1st, 2nd, 3rd etc. The theme was "The Magic of Scouting"

I did my first fondant cake. It wasn't as successful as I'd hoped, but not bad for a 1st.
The 1st place award went to someone with much more fondant experience than I!

The boys enjoyed the magician