Northwest Vacation: Part Three

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One of the several signs we saw that made no sense of being there (I think we know we are in air and breathe it) ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

The next day, the 16th, we saw some pretty weird signs before we went to the Ye Olde Curiosity Shop. It was like a miniature Ripley’s Believe-it-or-Not museum, but in a store. I got a wooden “voodoo” doll. It was bizarre looking, but still cute.20160616_110634[1] On our way out, we saw a cupcake truck. We got two cupcakes and ate one of them. It was very good. The other one we saved for later. Continue reading

Northwest Vacation: Part Two

In part one of the Northwest Vacation, we went to Mt. Rushmore, Little Bighorn Battlefield, and fed prairie dogs. After the battlefield, we drove through Montana, Idaho and most of Washington. In Tacoma, we went to our hotel to rest up for the next day: Seattle, Washington!

A picture of the different sizes of grinds coffee can be.

Wednesday morning, we drove to Seattle and parked at Pike’s Place Market. We didn’t do anything there yet because my dad and I really wanted to get to the Starbucks Coffee 20160615_090738[1] Roastery. It was really cool, looking at all the tools they have to use to roast, store, grind, and blend the coffee beans to get the right type of taste. After we looked around, we got a pretzel bagel and a coffee. My dad and I both got an iced “No. 11” brew. It was amazing.

After getting our caffeine fix, we went back to Pike’s Place Market. We saw the famous fish tossers toss a hole bunch of fish, but I only got one on video.

We walked around a lot, looking at the interesting signs and stores and found an ocarina salesman. He makes ceramic ocarinas all the time, from tiny, one inch big 4-hole ocarinas to larger, 6-hole ocarinas. I got a 5-hole ocarina as well as two books on how to play it. Next we went to Honest Biscuits for food. I really liked the Sweet Potato Biscuit. It was delicious! We also went to a chocolate store in Pike’s Place Market, and later saw a steel drum player. We then went to some stores specifically for fans of almost ANY show, band, game, card game, or movie! I got a Doctor Who ID for the Tenth Doctor, or David Tennant’s Doctor. He’s my favorite.

After our walk around Pike’s Market, we went to the space needleSpace Needle. space needleMy mom and I went up the Space Needle and got an amazing view of Seattle. We could even see our car! Later in the day, after some driving north, we did a whale watching tour and saw two orca whales a bunch of times. They aren’t technically whales, as we learned on the boat. They’re actually the largest member of the dolphin family. They didn’t breach at all, but they did surface so more than their dorsal fin was showing several times. We got back to the hotel late, but it was worth it to see the sunset on the boat.

Orca sightingP1050350

We got back to the hotel late, but it was worth it to see the sunset on the boat. Stay tuned for part three about Ye Old Curiosity Shop and Oregon.

 

 

Northwest Vacation: Part One

Hi guys!  We had one the most interesting vacations this year. It’s our Northwest-Pacific Vacation!

On Sunday, we got up really early so we could hit the road before traffic got really bad. There was tons and tons and TONS of driving, but we did get to feed the prairie dogs near the Badlands in South Dakota.They were so cute, and they were very funny. Some of them made noises as they reared up on their back feet that made them look like they were chanting, or at least very happy.

Mount Rushmore

Mount Rushmore

We left the hotel the next morning and had enough time to go to Mount Rushmore! I hadn’t been there since I was four, so I didn’t really remember it. It’s definitely big, and there was a lot of work put into it. Going to it now, since I knew more about the Sioux and their fight to keep the Black Hills area, I appreciated the work that the Sioux did to keep their land more than the monument the government put into the taken land.

open range

The Open Range

Next, we drove some more and found a random oven in the middle of nowhere. It had a sign on it that read “OPEN RANGE.” At first I didn’t get it, but my parents explained that it was an Open Range (stove) on the Open Range (land). My one thought after that was why and how people would get a stove into a field.

These look like big dandelions!

Monument on Last Stand Hill

Monument on Last Stand Hill

By this point, we started seeing more and more wild white sage. It practically took up entire fields in one place! There wasn’t as much sage at Little Bighorn Battlefield (our next stop), but there were some wild horses and humongous dandelions (they evidently weren’t dandelions, but I don’t know their name and they looked like dandelions)!  Little Bighorn had a lot of driving on a trail describing Custer and the “U.S. Army’s 7th Cavalry and the Sioux and Cheyenne in one of the Indian’s last armed efforts to preserve their way of life.” It was sad that so many died. The scenery and hills were pretty, though.

Little Bighorn cemetery

Little Bighorn cemetery

After the battlefield, we went to get food–Buffalo Burgers. They were delicious!

Stay tuned for part two – Seattle!

School’s Out!

Hey guys! Summer has finally started (well, summer vacation has started). I already miss school, but I can’t wait for the fun that summer will bring! Even though I’ll be on the computer a lot playing games, I’m going to write, draw, and finally practice piano, at least that’s my goal.

The last few days of school were a bust, all because we had our finals the last full week of school. We watched so many movies in those three days, I lost track! Leading up to the end of school, we were bombarded with tests and last minute homework to get our last few points in for the year. That was the worst part of the year. The good thing about the year wrapping up, other than no more school, was that we didn’t have to take gym anymore! The eighth graders were using the gym everyday to practice their promotion ceremony, so we got to have a free period. My friends and I were either drawing, studying, writing, or playing cards. We are not the sporty type at all.

Our costumes for the 1920s party

Our costumes for the 1920s party.

We also had the Chicago Interdisciplinary Unit wrap-up party. It was supposed to take place in the 1920s, and our teachers dressed up. It was like a gigantical game of “Clue,” and I LOVE Clue. Our principal dressed up as Al Capone, but it didn’t suit him because he always smiles and has good posture. Our math teacher came back for the “Mystery Dinner” and dressed up as Baby Faced Nelson, which we found funny because she had just had her baby. All the students’ costumes were neat, too. My dad helped out as a bouncer, so he dressed up in his best mobster attire 🙂 . There were a lot of flappers and gangsters among us.

All in all, I’m glad the year is over, but it was a lot of fun. I hope your summers are all sunny and wonderful.

 

The Spring Springfield Field Trip

Hi guys! Sorry I haven’t posted much, I’ve been busy with LOTS of school stuff, including a trip to Springfield, Illinois, a few weeks ago. It was fun, and I learned some new things about the area.

For starters, we got up really early so I could catch the bus. My friends and I sat together (it was funny because we were all Pisces in one section of the bus) and took pictures out the windows on the 4-hour drive. We had a break, but then it was straight back to the bus. A few people dozed off, but they didn’t stay asleep for long. We had reached our first destination!

As we walked up to the New State Capital Building, it looked very regal. P1000876We felt like we were walking into a castle in some ways. The inside was shiny and a lot of it was marble. We went up four flights of stairs at the start of the building, but it was worth it. P1000895There are two different rooms that are almost identical, but they are used for voting in the state capital. As we walked the halls, we could look up at the dome. It was beyond words!

We went outside and I took some pictures with my friends. After the teachers took a group shot, we headed back to the bus where we started for the Old State Capital Building. It was a smaller, and of course older, version of where we had just been. Although it wasn’t as large, it still was very neat. We went into the room where Abraham Lincoln had sat when he voted for senators and representatives. It was also the same room that his coffin and body were kept in on the last day it was visible to people.

At our next place to visit, the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, we went through a long walking tour. It led from a replica of the Lincoln’s one-room cabin all the way to a mini-movie. The mini-movie at first looked like a man telling us all about artifacts, but it soon turned into a history with a slight ghost-story twist. I won’t spoil the ending for you, but let’s just say it left a majority of the group in awe at the ghost.

We had lunch after the ghost story, and one of my friend made friends with a squirrel. After we ate, we headed to the Governor’s Mansion. We weren’t allowed to take any pictures inside, but it had a lot of cool china and furniture. When we went outside, we met the governor’s dog, Stella. P1000954She licked my hand before becoming swarmed with kids petting her. After hanging out around the flowers and bugs for a bit, the teachers let us go back to the bus.

Next, we went to the Lincoln family tomb.P1000960 I had read about the Lincoln tomb in a bP1000977ook about the Lincoln grave robbers for a  summer report, and I had also watched a story on it on Mysteries at the Museum. It was very cool to be at his grave; no matter how weird that sounded, it was fun.

Our next stop was a memorial for a lot of wars that have happened, including World Wars I and II, the Vietnam  P1000981 P1000985War, and the Korean War. At the Vietnam War Memorial, there is an everlasting flame that they keep lit to show the determination of the warriors in that war. My friend found the name ofP1000991 her relative at that memorial, too!

We went to our hotel for a bit, for about an hour so we could eat dinner, and then we left for the shopping mall. Almost everyone stopped in at the glow-in-the-dark mini-golf, and we all glowed. I was wearing a white top so I looked like I fell into toxic ooze! We headed back to the hotel after waiting around, getting slightly lost, and walking in circles. The teachers told us to get into our pajamas, and then called us down for a pizza party. Why they had us eat dinner, go to a mall, get into our PJs, and then have a nine o’clock pizza party is beyond me, especially since we had already eaten! My roommates and I had a lot of fun. We made each other look like clowns with makeup, had a pillow fight, and watched some anime (two of them are HUGE anime fans), a Japanese style cartoon, and then attempted to fall asleep. I was the only one to fall asleep at midnight, the others fell asleep at three or four in the morning. We got up at four-forty-five so we could be ready for the breakfast call at six. My friends looked like zombies because they were so sleep deprived!

We headed to a small village called New Salem. We P1010033watched a video on Abraham Lincoln’s history there. A boy fell asleep behind me because he and his roommates were up all night (he was aP1010054lso in the neighboring room at the hotel, so I think we kept them up a bit). P1010014It was a pretty informational video, but I had the most fun running around the village and taking pictures. The village only had some staff workers, so running around was okayP1010006 as long as we didn’t trash anything. My friends caught up to me and we P1010027ran-walked the rest of the area, all the way to a bridge. We had about thirty minutes left after making it to the bridge, but we were tired so we P1010078walked back (until I mentioned that there P1010067was ice cream in the gift shop). We ran so we would have enough time to enjoy the sweet treat, and ended up inspiring everyone else to get swirl ice cream. It was delicious.

Then we went to the Lincoln Home, our final stop on our trip. It was somewhat small, especially for having so many people living there, let alone guests that would come over. The Lincolns were hosts to 200 people at some parties, and they could all fit in two tiny rooms! Also at this stop, there was a small house that we went into that was used by some of Lincoln’s associates. It had some artifacts that had been found in the area, but it wasn’t anything much.

On the bus trip home, it was fairly uneventful. We all talked on the way home, about how much fun it was. A few of us also talked about how we would survive the next day, where we had a Destination Imagination competition! But that’s a different story…

This was a very fun field trip with my school. I can’t wait to see what next year’s is!

Happy Easter!!!

Hey everybody! Happy Easter! Did you know that Easter is the first Sunday after the first full moon occurring on or after the vernal equinox and that it can be delayed a week if the first full moon is on a Sunday? I didn’t until I looked it up today, but it’s still a cool fact for those of you who didn’t know. My favourite part of Easter is doing a lot of family stuff, like making an Easter Egg Hunt for my parents and going to my grandparents to celebrate. But I also like to learn new facts about the holiday.

Here are some fun facts about Easter: Continue reading

A funspirational guide to finding superific things to do!

Featured

Watching TV, playing on the computer and going to the park are fun, but there’s a lot more you could do. You could create a new recipe, build something cool or write a new song. You could “travel” the world or make your own holiday. Nothing’s impossible with the right imagination.

Here are some of my top tips, suggestions and ways to get the most out of your free time.

Chicago!

At my school, we have these projects called IDUs (InterDisciplinary Untis) that we have to do in order to get to the next level (of awesomeness!). They always have a theme, and this year’s theme is Chicago.

In my first period, Science, we had to do a project on a song. But not just any song: it had to be by a band with either historical ties to Chicago (i.e. they got famous there) or they were from Chicago (i.e. the band formed somewhere in Chicago). I chose the song, “Lake Shore Drive” by Aliotta Haynes Jeremiah. Besides the band being big in Chicago, I could use the song because it helped make them famous and it was about a road they often traveled in Chicago. I had to research the song, analyze it and write a report on it in Claim-Evidence-Reasoning format, and then either sing it or make a fake 45 or 78 rpm record of it. I both sang it and made a fake 45. The song is on my mom’s YouTube channel, but I really don’t want to share it. 🙂

In my second period, Social Studies, we had to do a poster on one of the neighborhoods in Chicago. There are over 200 neighborhoods to choose from, so I made my work simple: select 5 of the neighborhoods with odd names, then choose one as first pick and go down the list from there. The only neighborhood I recognized was Gold Coast, and that was because it was mentioned in “Lake Shore Drive.” I did get my first pick, which was Ravenswood. Evidently, Rahm Emanuel, the Chicago mayor, lives there. Abbott Labs was started in a Ravenswood mansion (that is now painted a lavendar-pink, which looks a tad bit gross to me), and Carl Sandburg lived there for a bit. He also wrote Chicago while he was in Ravenswood (well, some people disagree, but I’m leaving it at that). Ravenswood was pretty interesting.

My next project was in fourth period, Communications. We had to do either a model of a Chicago building or a brochure. I chose to do a brochure that had 5 structures of Chicago that tourists should see. I called it “Wavy Wonders of Chicago,” and it showed the different wavy structures inspired by Lake Michigan. I found some interesting facts about the structures, and I found some pretty weird structures, too!

Here's the inside of my brochure. Thank you to the people who posted the pictures.

Here’s the inside of my brochure. Thank you to the people who posted the pictures.

I have two more projects to go, but so far the projects have been fun. My next one involves PowerPoint and theatre jobs–two things I really like.

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year to everybody! Hope your year has been great! Speaking of which, why don’t we reflect on our year? I know mine was great (even though I forgot some stuff)!

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The biggest thing I remember is our Alaska trip. That was really fun, and cold, but mostly fun. Next year/this coming year, hopefully we will make better memories of Seattle 🙂 . We learned a lot about Alaska’s history and culture, and about sled dogs, and glaciers, and learned just plain out a LOT.

I also remember my first day of 7th grade. It was…interesting. We had to carry our stuff around for a few days in a backpack, because they didn’t have our lockers for us yet. That was the only really bad thing on the first few days. The rest of the year (so far) has been stressful, fun and great!

There was a lot of craziness in October and November with the play in Kenosha, “To Kill a Mockingbird.” I had to go up there almost every single day of the week! But the shows and performances were worth it. I performed as Scout in two day performances, and even though I missed a few lines (and school that day 🙁 ), it went really well.

P1040805We also made steampunk style a big part of my world. My Halloween costume was a steampunk girl, and we changed my room into a steamounk den (sort of). We also decorated our tiny tree as a Doctor Who-Steampunk tree this year.

We decoupaged some heads to put my Halloween masks on

We decoupaged some heads to put my Halloween masks on

This coming year will be crazy at the beginning with school. We have about a zillion tests, and we have Battle of the Books (a reading competition), and Destination Imagination (http://www.destinationimagination.org/).

We are going to  be busy, but I hope your new year gets off to a great start!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving, everybody! Hope you are enjoying this holiday of thanks. I found some interesting facts about this feasting holiday:

Lots of people know that the First Thanksgiving was with the Pilgrims and Native Americans, but did you know that it wasn’t an official holiday until 1863? In the middle of the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln declared Thanksgiving a national holiday to be celebrated every November. It’s celebrated on the 4th Thursday of November. Now, even though we still celebrate Thanksgiving, lots has changed from how it used to be. People didn’t eat turkey at the first Thanksgiving. They ate seals, swans, deer, corn, shellfish, and lobster. It just depended on which people brought each food. The Pilgrims didn’t have any ovens or sugar, so they didn’t have any cakes or pies like we do today. The Native Americans and Pilgrims ate together for three days as they celebrated a harvest feast.

Thanksgiving Tree

Our “Thanksgiving Tree”

The Pilgrims were thankful to the Native Americans for the food. So what are you thankful for? I’m thankful for my loving family (including my cat), my friends, and the roof over my head.