Archive for the ‘everyday fun stuff’ Category

Our 7th Learn Nothing Day. Read that – 7th!!! Holy cow on a hill! I just went back through the blog (painful at the best of times!) and last year I missed reporting…so, hey, maybe we actually DID learn nothing last year?!

This year. not so much. I woke up to panic in the house. Kai had a virus pop up page come on his laptop. So – panic stations…download Malwarebytes, Avast, install adblocker, run scans…fail, then…in the non-learning department. Kai learnt that watching Kiss Cartoon is fraught with pop-up threats!

He then skyped with friends and played Overgrowth for a few hours. Maybe he didn’t learn anything…yeah, nah.

Then we decided we’d just give up, and make it a normal Sunday….so we went for a drive to a waterfall we hadn’t been to before (disaster right there!), hiked up it. Took photos. ID’d plants (my new hobby, to the immense boredom of everyone else!). Went back down to the coffee shop for hot chocolate and played some Pokemon Go (and caught our first Pikachu!)

Steavenson Falls – one of Victoria’s highest drop waterfalls – 122m (sorry if you learnt something new!)


Laccaria species fungi at the top of the waterfall (yeah, now I’m just showing off!)

It’s 7.13pm. Kai’s playing Overgrowth again – sorting his stats, resources, trying to level up. I’m about to watch Masterchef, so bound to learn something new too….Kai’s also reading Harry Potter before bed….and each night learning something different in the story that he’s seen a billion times in the movie (mostly that Dudley is even more obnoxious in the book, it seems!).

Oh! And we just played 3 rounds of TimeLine – I lost all 3, as usual…but learnt a heap…and so did Kai. We googled what started WW1. How foolish!? Surely that could have waited till tomorrow…

So. 7 years fail. At least we are consistent ;)


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Our 4th Learn Nothing Day was 3 days ago. Goodness me – time flies!  I took photos, and recorded it, but only just got back to internet, so here I am!   As usual, our day of trying to learn nothing has been a huge failure. But it started out promisingly….

We have been on holidays in Wales with my cousin Gary, his wife and 4 of his 5 kids. In the middle of nowhere in a cottage. I figured if we didn’t really go outside, and tried to minimize other activities we might not learn tooooo much. We got up late-ish…the kids watched a movie. A new movie for Kai – eek! Called Dinosaur Hunters….double eek… I didn’t watch it, so I can surmise maybe he learnt nothing new (but I doubt that!). After the movie, Kai played some games on his iPod…hmmm, nothing to see here…

Then it went from bad to worse….some of the kids were playing 4 Kings in the lounge…


And Kai decided to show Poppy how to play 5 Crowns outside….


Aggghhh! Damn those learning kids!

Then me, Kai and Poppy played Uno…



And Kai and Berry played some soccer in the back garden…


By now I figure it’s a lost cause….but we add insult to injury by going out. We went to Pwllheli (which is pronounced pith-elli – go figure – crazy Welsh!)..On the way, Gary was playing some music, and Kai learnt some dance movies from his cousins in the car…and has memorized the words to #thatpower by Wil I Am…

We walked all around the shops. Went to the fun fair…


Went to the fancy sweet shop (no pics, I was in a different shop!)

Then we went to have a BBQ at the beach…At the beach there was swimming. Kai’s freestyle improved dramatically…


We found a shark egg (which is next to my finger as a size guide so we could later ID it….it was a catshark (dogfish) phew – thank goodness we couldn’t google on Learn Nothing Day!)


We BBQ’d on weird disposable BBQ’s and the kids made plates from rocks – and Kai used a jagged shell to cut his bread!



They went climbing……really, terrifyingly, high!


More swimming, rock and shell collecting, and a drive home with more music and dancing. Kai looked through a bit of his new gaming magazine when we got home, and now he’s going to bed…

Yeah. So. Epic fail….see y’all next year!!

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I haven’t been very good at keeping up in England! We’ve been here 16 days and I posted once! Anyway – it’s Day in The Life Day…so I tried hard to keep a track today.

We woke up about 8am at my Dad’s house – in Somerset England. We’ve been there 6 days, weather has been amazing! Kai watched some Pokemon, then played DS Pokemon, and ate some cereal. We packed our bags, and left them around  10.30am to drive back to my Mum’s in Birmingham – about a 2 hour motorway drive…

Kai played DS Pokemon the whole way back…



…backseat complete with Monster Munch!

About half-way we stopped at the Motorway services near Gloucester. It was brand new, and very fancy. All locally sourced food and bread made on site, etc….I got sushi. Brett got a sandwich. Kai got his very first baguette with smoked salmon and cream cheese! (don’t ask about the price!!)


He also got his usual juice, and some fancy chips/crisps…he looked at the packet of chips, and said (quizzically!) ‘Salty Dog?’ – they were called Salty Dog crisps….and he read the packet….I know his reading has improved heaps lately, so I suppose I shouldn’t have been that surprised!

We got to Mum’s around 1pm, and I went with her to the doctor around 2.30pm…the boys stayed home, Kai back to to Pokemon DS…

We had dinner and Kai, Brett and I decided to go for a walk at Clent Hills since the weather was so lovely and it doesn’t get dark till around 10pm! We parked at the pub, then hiked up the hill, where we think we found a badger sett, which was pretty cool….


Kai spent a lot of time looking for real evidence – poop and hairs – to no avail, but i’m pretty sure it’s a badger sett, not a fox hole…

We walked back to the pub, and had a drink each. Despite it being such a lovely evening, we had the gardens to ourselves!


Kai went straight to bed when we got home – with a Yorkie (chocolate bar!) and a glass of banana strawberry innocent smoothie…oh, and watching Fanboy & Chum Chum!

That was our day, hope yours was full of sunshine too!


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We’re in England! We made it….28 or so hours in transit from Adelaide airport to Birmingham airport….Kuala Lumpar and Amsterdam airports on the way!

So. I hope to keep up what we’ve been doing, so i’ll start as I mean to go on – we’ve only been here two days and i’m just emerging from the fog of jet lag…

Kai photographed some of the journey from Adelaide….



Kai’s first photo was his Hungry Jack’s cheeseburger in Adelaide Airport (he had another Hungry Jack’s in KL, but was too tired to photograph at that point!)



This was our plane from Adelaide to KL….



He was fascinated with all the clogs in Amsterdam Schipol Airport!


By the time we got to Amsterdam, despite sitting down for so long, we were happy to use the moving walkways!


No photo’s of my face – I looked shocking by this time! ha!

But all flights were on time, and uneventful, and our baggage arrived with us – so we were pretty happy with all that! I walked to the shop on Tuesday, and that was about it! We both slept through the first night though, and Kai slept 9pm – 9am! (I was up at 4am….)

Yesterday we went for a walk to Clent Hills….it’s one of our favourite places when we are here….it’s very bushy at the moment, it being summer!


Check that tree out!!!


I think my eye’s are closed behind those glasses! But anyway – check how warm it is! Singlet weather in England!!


Flake Ice-Cream! So – it was nice to get out in the sun, and have a walk….other than shopping again, that was all we did yesterday too…last night we both slept through the night again, although we were both up at 6am watching Man of Steel this morning!

Today we went into Birmingham. We had a quick visit to the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery. They have a really awesome exhibit called the Staffordshire Hoard – Medieval artifacts that have been found locally…We saw it two years ago, but they’ve added more stuff…Kai liked the swords (no surprise there, then!)



After the museum, we went to the shops in the city….we finally found Steve Backshall’s book that we’ve been looking for – we love Steve….and hopefully we will love his first fiction book! In the same shop Kai found Minecraft books and chose the Combat one, which we browsed through in a city Starbucks over a cookie!



After all that, we were about done, and got the bus home (Kai likes double decker buses!)…This afternoon we lounged about and watched Iron Man 3…My computer tells me it’s 3.47am in Adelaide…but I think i’m finally starting to feel like i’m on UK time now – although I doubt i’ll be having a late night!

More soon…


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This morning we were all up early…maybe by 8am? The whole  family! That doesn’t happen often! Kai immediately skyped his friend Bluin – who we’ve known from Boulder since we lived there. The boys have recently re-connected over Pirate 101, which has been awesome!

Kai and I dropped Brett off at the bus stop, returned some library books, nipped into the Post Office because Kai wanted a stamp collecting book, and made a quick stop at the grocery store.

Most of the rest of the day was spent with Kai and Bluin skyping and playing Pirate 101..


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Terrible photo – sorry!

I did some work that I’ve been procrastinating about, and cleaned the house (the in-laws arrive Saturday! I have a lot of cleaning to do!).

Food-wise – Kai had ice cream for breakfast. Like a true unschooler should! (joke!). Then he had noodles a little later, quorn nuggets,wedges and broccoli for dinner…and I expect to be taking him a plate of baby corn, chick peas and bread in a minute (it’s nearly 10pm…).

I went to the gym, as always on a Tuesday…when I got home, I helped Kai with his new stamp collecting book – he also got a bunch of stamps with it, and we have been saving stamps for a while that we also got to put in it.

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Then we read some Zac Power….and now he’s watching The Avengers before bed!

So –that’s our day…hope you had a wonderful day too…

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So, this is just a quick story. Not really a post even. More to remind myself it happened, because it was so super cool!

On Tuesday we went to see X-Men: Days of Future Past. We loved it. It was awesome. In the beginning, Wolverine and a young Prof. X need to break Magneto out of prison in order to stop something happening that will lead to a terrible future for the mutants.

Here’s a gratuitous picture of my 3 favourite X-Men!


Turns out Magneto is in prison for the assassination of JFK….but later he states that he was actually trying to save JFK by bending the bullet, because JFK was a mutant, like him.

On Wednesday night, we all started watching a movie called ‘The Help’ – wonderful movie about a young woman in the south who decides to write a book documenting the experiences of the African-American men and women who work as ‘the help’ in the homes of rich people. Kai watched a little bit of it, and I answered some questions about how African-American people were treated (segregated bus seats, and a different entrance to the cinema, were shown in the movie), and about the civil rights movement in the 1960’s….then he fell asleep on the couch.

The next day, we drove to a park day that was over an hour away. On the way, he asked me what happened in the movie. I told him that something happened that made lots more people agree to tell their story – that Martin Luther King Jr was shot (in real life, and coinciding with that part of the movie), and that the book came out, and was very controversial. He asked me who shot Martin Luther King and why.  I told him I didn’t know the name of the man, but I expected that he shot MLK Jr because he was a racist. I explained what a racist was (when we got home I looked up more details on the shooting, and realised I did remember the name of James Earl Ray…but we found more interesting stuff too).

Then I mentioned that the 1960’s were a time of a lot of civil unrest and that the then US president, JFK, was also shot in the 1960’s and that he was in favour of equal rights. He asked who shot JFK – this I did know! And why – that led to my trying to explain what a conspiracy theory was! Then I remembered the X-Men, and how it bought in the conspiracy theory with the bending bullet thing (there’s whole webpages on it…seriously!)…

Somehow, and here I lost track of this amazing conversation….we started talking about World War II and Hitler – I think Kai compared Hitler to a racist, maybe? That led to questions about how WWII started, the Holocaust, ethnic cleansing and the Aryan race….

So, from two seemingly unconnected movies – X-Men and The Help (that many parents wouldn’t have let an 8 year old watch in the first place), we covered so much history it’s mind-boggling!  Google and the internet meant that we could look up the questions I didn’t know the answers to in the car when we got home (there were a fair few – my history knowledge – especially with respect to the US, is pretty shonky!)…Kai commented how fast the hour drive to the park was, because of all the things we talked about.

At the park (with another unschooling Mom) – I talked about our conversation and was reminded of Sandra’s ‘Connections’ page….it seemed such a perfect example of that…

That is all. Just wanted to record it all before I forgot it!

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I feel kind of self-conscious more people are reading the blog, so I need to write something more profound….but I won’t!

It’s Day in the Life day – continued on from a tradition started by the Blue Skies unschooling group when we lived in Colorado…I hereby promise to document our day – beginning to end – 3rd Tuesday of the month!

Today Kai and I were up pretty early, maybe around 8.30am. Kai had a ‘plate of food’ for breakfast – nuts, baby corn, craisins, piece of bread with mayo…and mostly played his DS for a while – he’s into Lego Chima at the moment and has been multi-tasking between the Lego game and a DVD from the library!

I helped him find some walkthroughs, and he watched some TV – Adventure Time is too funny – really! He also went outside to chop some logs with his axe, then did bit of whittling with a new knife Brett bought him recently.

For lunch he had half a stick of garlic bread and a bowl of noodles….

After lunch we went for a walk, and to find a local geocache – one of the only one’s we haven’t yet found within walking distance of the house! We found it…

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Kai also noticed some ‘fairy mushrooms’ just up the road…

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(terrible photo – sorry – iPhone!)

and we saw trees with cool tessellations in the bark!

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A somewhat better picture…but I should have taken the good camera!

When we got home he played more DS Chima, and watched ‘The Flamin’ Thongs’ – a new and hilarious cartoon about an Australian family with mullets! (true story!).

We just had dinner – he had fish, potato wedges and broccoli, and probably some ice cream in a minute…

Before dinner he designed a game – you play it with action figures – it looks like this:

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It’s only 6.50pm, but since I’m supposed to be working this evening, I should wrap this up! I foresee some Deadly 60, more Lego Chima on the DS and on the TV, and bed around 10.30pm.

Oh, and I wanted to add this link – we just watched ‘You’re Skitting Me’ which is a pretty awesome show – and Kai likes this skit – it’s pretty funny!


Hope y’all had a wonderful day too.

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