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Archive for October, 2005

Boulder Tea, Party

I have been struggling between the obligations of work and the attractions of Denver. On Friday, I weakened and took most of the day off to join Eleanor and Emma at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science. They had an exhibit called “Grossology” that Emma desperately wanted to see. As you can imagine, it was all about snot, burping, farting, and other fun stuff. Here I am standing explaining the function of intestines, by a sign that says, “Why does my body make pee?” Gee, why didn’t they have this sort of fun when I was a kid?

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The Museum has much more to offer, and we found ourselves entranced by terrific exhibits of Coloradoan wildlife, as well as creatures from other parts of the world, a Native American exhibit, a gemstone exhibit, and a space exhibit. Well worth the visit!

Unfortunately taking the day off meant working all evening, and again this morning in a desperate effort to get ahead before we take off next week for more travel. We’ll be in Utah and Nevada most of the week and I won’t be taking a lot of time to work. My next catch-up period will be when we arrive at Velocity7 in Nevada City, CA (see the Schedule page for details).

Forrest McClure dropped by this morning to deliver an article and pictures for the Winter magazine, and then it was time to head out to pick up Fred Coldwell and head over to Boulder. Our first stop was the Celestial Seasonings factory for their tour. That was a HUGE hit with Eleanor. Fred, Emma, and I all enjoyed the free samples in their entrance area. You haven’t lived until you’ve visited the notorious MINT ROOM. Another recommended place to visit, and free!

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Then we headed to Patti Raimondo’s house in Boulder CO for a party the local Airstreamers had organized in our honor. Shari & Rob Davis were there, and another couple — all vintage trailer owners from the local WBCCI unit in Denver. That went until 10 pm (lots of laughs!)

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…and so here we are at midnight catching up on blogging.

I’m really glad we came to Denver. It’s a great area to visit, we have lots of good Airstreaming friends here, and the weather and scenery have been spectacular. Our departure on Tuesday is coming all too fast, but we’ve got other places to go…

The best laid plans

The best laid plans”¦ We have been trying to go to the Denver Zoo for a week and it looks like we just won’t make it. The first time I intended to take Emma to the zoo, traffic was so awful, we would not have been able to arrive at the zoo with enough time to see much of anything. I bagged the idea of going to the zoo and opted for Hammond’s Candies factory tour instead. That was a mistake too. It took us 70 minutes to travel less than 15 miles. We missed the last tour by 10 minutes. However, we managed to spend an hour in the candy shop. ;-)
Tuesday was slotted for the aquarium. We went and had a great time. We got to pet Sting Rays!! I’ll ask Emma to blog that one.
Wednesday seemed like a good day for the zoo, but we had car conflicts. Rich needed to use the car. We all went out with Rich. (Thursday had better weather in the forecast and I needed to catch up on things anyway.)
Thursday, Emma slept until 11AM ““ when I finally woke her up. She has been battling a bit of a cold and the sleep was well needed. However, the zoo closes at 4PM. Taking the time we need to get out the door and traffic conditions into consideration, once again, we wouldn’t have had much time to spend at the zoo.
Today, I promised to take her to the Denver Museum of Nature & Science for the Grossology exhibit, and our weekend is already booked.
“que sera, sesa”

The Collector’s House

Thursday was one of those off-schedule days where I end up working early in the morning and late at night to make up for doing other things all day. Fred Coldwell called to say the Fall 05 issues of Airstream Life had arrived FedEx at his house, and after we finally got Emma out of bed at about 11 (!) we headed over.

Fred is a collector of Jeep, Airstream and related memorabilia and historical items, so the tour of his house and garages took a couple of hours. He’s got an incredible collection of stuff, including a ’48 Wee Wind, a 62? Globetrotter, a ’51 Clipper, and several rare wartime Jeeps. He also collects a certain type of wool blanket with national park emblems on them. Meanwhile, Eleanor and Emma headed off to a nearby laundromat to catch up on that chore, and later Fred and I showed up with lunch. So we all had lunch at the laundromat to the background of 70’s disco blasting out of the loudspeakers.

With various other errands (post office, hardware store) we ended up getting back home around 6 pm, and that’s when my working day started again — until about 11 pm. It was one of those unconventional but full days that we seem to have frequently when on the road.

News from Cherry Creek

Another mostly sunny day in dry Denver. The humidity continues to linger below 30%, sometimes as low as 17%, so we are sucking up water at a tremendous rate, despite the cool air. I went for a bike ride the other day (and was reminded about how the altitude makes little hills into big ones), and wiped out 16 oz of water in a short 10-mile ride around the Cherry Creek Dam.

My advance copies of the Airstream Life Fall 2005 issue have arrived, so yours should be in the mail now. I hope you like the new 80-page format and “perfect bound” spine! I’m heading over to Fred Coldwell’s house today to pick mine up. They came in FedEx and I couldn’t receive a FedEx shipment here at the campground.

Another bit of good news for vintage Airstream nuts: The VAP, Episode 4 is now available for download at www.thevap.com. I’m not on this episode but go ahead and listen to it anyway! ;-)

Something’s up with Emma. She was clearing her throat all last night and she’s still sleeping now — 13 hours after she went to bed. I’m holding out hope that she’ll fight it off. But she might have picked up a bug at the Aquarium on Tuesday.

We’ve made our plans for the next week. Check the Schedule page to see where we are planning to be. If you live along our route, let me know so we can meet up. If you can meet us in Eugene OR that would be great, because we’ll have free stuff to give away there, including some cool Airstream stickers, free samples of Airstream Life magazine, and other goodies. Plus, Eleanor and I want to meet you!

Strike when your kid is hot (to learn)

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Home schooling doesn’t only happen on a schedule. It’s whenever you and your child are tuned in to each other and your surroundings. This morning Emma and I were sitting on her bed, playing tic-tac-toe on her white board. The markers were drying out and I suggested we make a list of the colors we needed to replace. I wrote the colors on the board and then asked Emma to sound out the letters to figure out the names of the colors: bl + ack, gr + een, br + ow + n, etc. (You get the idea.)

It’s been like this all along. Yesterday, I pointed out to Emma that being able to do the connect the dots in her coloring book meant that she was able to count consecutively up to 64 (the number of dots in that picture) and she was able to recognize the numbers when she saw them. (Now she doesn’t want to do the connect the dots anymore. Oh well.)

Living & Learning

Home-schooling while on the road gives a whole new meaning to the term live and learn.

Wherever we are, Rich and I try to make it a learning experience for Emma and ourselves. We visit local attractions and learn about local customs and people. We go to museums and parks, attend fairs and flea markets, visit the local library for different books, a story hour, and great people interaction. We always search out farmers markets and the local eateries ““ not the chains ““ to get the best of the local flavors.

Sunday, for lunch, we went to a Mexican restaurant and had a wonderful meal. We were very obviously the tourists in this eatery. It was packed with locals, the children of the owners and staff were there, playing among the tables. Not a word of English was heard except from our table. It was great.

After lunch, we went to the Children’s Museum of Denver. It’s completely hands on. Emma got to be a fireman and learn about fire safety, she and Rich were carpenters and learned something new about recycling in the process. There was a stage area where Emma dressed up, did a dance and played a toy drum.

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The nature area was set up in a way to discover different animal habitats. She also got to play basketball and be a line cook. I posted a bunch of photos from the museum in the photo album. (You can take a look.)

After the museum, we played outside at the playground and Emma made a new friend for an hour. Then it was off to a friend’s house for a homemade lasagna dinner and some great company.

Emma’s first post

(Editor’s note: the following is a posting dicated by Emma, age 5.)

Yesterday, we went to a candy shop and there was candy shaped and look like ornaments for your tree. And also there was a taste testing place where you could taste a piece of candy. And there was hundreds of candies.

It was so awesome. Mom even found some candies for her coffee. We missed the tour to see how they make candy.
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