Friday, August 31, 2012

cruisin' on a....

... summer afternoon.

background: The girls have been doing summer camp (or were, back when it was summer!) and for one called "Seattle Sun" they were taking a cruise on an Argosy boat. M told them they might be going on the "Locks" tour, which would take them through the Hiram Chittenden Locks in Ballard. They ended up NOT doing this, but by planting the idea that they were apparently threw the girls for a loop:

M&me: You went on an Argosy Cruise?
K&L: Yeah!
me: How was it?
K: Uh... kinda boring.
me: Really? Where did you go?
M: Yeah, where did you go?
K (looking slightly panicked): Uh... I don't know!
M: Really?
K (truly upset now): There are lots of different bodies of water Mommy!!

It took some doing, be we eventually established that they did a "Harbor" cruise, which takes them out and around Elliott Bay for about an hour. Now this seems to me to be familiar territory - it's the water that's visible from Seacrest Park, from the waterfront, from the Big Wheel, it's the water the Water Taxi crosses every day. It's the water we see from Jack Block Park. And it's all that separates West Seattle from Downtown ("Where your work is, Daddy!"). But evidently, being on a boat with other young children, and especially if you were preconditioned to be going through the locks, makes it difficult to recognize where you are.

When we asked if they could see the Water Taxi, K said "I think maybe I saw it." When I asked where they left from, K said she didn't know. When I asked if it was near Red Robin, she sort of nodded and said it was near the Aquarium. So we pinned down the launching point as downtown waterfront. When I asked if they saw the big cranes, both girls nodded and L said "And you know what Daddy? We SAW ONE OF THEM MOVE!!!!"

The girls told us that there was someone talking who "knew a lot about a lot" and we eventually narrowed this down to a tour guide who was pointing stuff out, including the big cranes and "a lot of buildings."

When I asked whether or not they saw the stadiums, K nodded enthusiastically and said with clear joy at having some clear she understands. "Yeah, we saw BOTH stadiums!"

Later M learned that the woman who was talking and knew a lot about a lot (The tour guide? "Yeah, the tour guide!") was named after.... "that cheese."

M: Uh, Cheddar?
K: No!
M: Parmesian?
K No!!
M: That stinky cheese?
K: Yeah, that stinky cheese!!
M: Brie?
K: Yeah, Brie. She was named after Brie!
L: Yeah, she was named after Brie!!

And they saw a baby harbor seal, or maybe not a seal, maybe a sea lion. And maybe not a baby, "But that was what everyone was saying so I'm calling it a baby."

Once we had established that they had been on a harbor tour, and not on one of the other "bodies of water" (and where, by the way, did K learn that phrase?!?), partly by the fact that they acknowledged they'd seen West Seattle, I said "If I'd been there I could have pointed out Jack Block Park" and K said (somewhat distraughtly) "I don't even KNOW what it looks like!?!"

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

... it takes two...

Yeah, it's Tuesday again, and yeah, that means there's a definition out there somewhere, but I'm posting this instead.

You're on your own for language help today.

Monday, August 27, 2012

... rollin' rollin' rollin'...

... in the Olympics, or "Mommy, I'm in training... wheels for the Olympics"

Note: I woke up last Friday morning to what felt like distinctly fall weather, and realized I've not managed to get much posted this summer. In the spirit of getting things off my chest, this is the first of a bunch of "what we did this summer" posts. You're welcome!

We were watching TV, something we don't do a lot of in our house, due as much to time limitations as anything else, but also due to my belief that if the girls are able to keep themselves amused (whether it be with toy horses, dolls, flour and water, or crayons), it's better for them. But I'm getting sidetracked.

We were watching the Olympics and a women's bike race was on and since we'd been at the park biking the day before, the girls were especially taken by the images of the women pedaling hard in the pouring rain. There were a few crashes, nothing particularly damaging, but one that took out a couple of Americans, so got a lot of screen time, and there were the inevitable questions about how badly hurt the women were, and if they were hurt worse than when L got her burn, or when K got a scrape on her arm, and M and I were enjoying both the physical display of skill and athleticism and the opportunity to share examples of strong women doing physical things.

Olympian to be?

And then K finally managed to formulate her response to the spectacle.

K: Are training wheels not OK in this race?

I thought a moment and said that I suspected training wheels *would* be ok, if you wanted to use them, but that they would slow you way down, so no one uses them.

(Note: On rethinking, this may not be true. You may be required to use a 2-wheeled bike. Whatever.)

And we moved on.

Later, M showed the girls some water polo, but they found it boring fairly quickly.

In fact, they find much of TV boring, which I am pleased with. I'm less pleased with the fact that the commercials were quite compelling to the girls, sound off or sound on. Clearly advertisers know what the hell they're doing. And they're targeting the comprehension levels of 4-6 year olds.

another upcoming olympian
(and coach)