Trunk or Treat, SNOW, Opera, Halloween, Harriet hikes, weekend

Sunday was Trunk or Treat at church, snow had started falling, so they made the decision to have it indoors. Jack went as a dinosaur and the girls were helping with the kids games.

Jack ended up sleeping on my lap for almost the whole time. James was settled in Vegas by this time, getting ready for the start of his conference. It started to snow, so after getting some groceries we stayed in for the night.

Goings on – James at conference, school, shovel snow…repeat, Fox theater DOTD show, Barber of Seville opera, youth group, Halloween party, Harriet hike co-op, art walk, Night at the Museums, church, working at church.

Dinners this week – Mac and cheese with chipotle chicken sausage, beef taco soup, grilled cheese and tomato soup, sushi and dumplings, chicken fajitas, tikka masala meatballs with fried garbanzo beans, grilling stuff.

Monday morning, I heard the traffic was horrible. Lots of wrecks, icy streets, we stayed home.

We got Jack’s photos in from the pet parade, this one is cute.

This one, not so much.

This one is mine!

Jack had a lazy snow day.

We didn’t get the amount of snow that they thought, only 4 inches or so. But, another round of snow was coming on Tuesday/Wed. It came earlier than people thought, so some schools started the day on time, but ended early. Some schools took a snow day and CDOT was telling people that if they could leave work early (or not come into work at all), this was the day to do it. We had nowhere to be, so we just chilled at home.

We ended up with a few more inches, so maybe 7 total. Wednesday was our DOTD show, but I had stayed up watching the news and Aurora and Denver both called a snow day for Wednesday, so I knew the show would be canceled – it was.

Hannah was aching to get out, so we went to the mall. Youth group was canceled, and I was wondering if the Opera would be too – but it wasn’t.

Barber of Seville was amazing. The singing, the acting, the set and costumes – brilliant. Our student matinee seats were $12/15 and I looked up the price of our seats for the next show, $225 each – who can afford that?!

Thursday we did school and went to the library for a Halloween party. The girls trick or treated with M at night and we went to the Mansion for last stop.

Friday was my Harriet Tubman co-op and the first day of Harriet hikes (Girl Trek and Walk2Connect are doing 30 days of Harriet hikes to promote the movie.) We read 2 books about Harriet, watched a video, listened to a song and did some worksheet activities. We talked about slavery, the North and South, the Underground Railroad, Talking quilts, codes and the things that Harriet Tubman did that she’s not really know for like – Union spy, a leader of an Army mission to free 700 slaves, a nurse, and a suffragist among other things. After eating some hoe cakes we went outside in the cloudy 34 degree weather and walked around the lake. This story is about the awesome trek some of the GT people made walking in the footsteps of Harriet Tubman.
https://ideas.ted.com/what-we-learned-from-walking-in-the-…/

I’m also going to be posting each day of the month about women that you should know, some of them may be familiar (like Harriet Tubman), some may have done great things – but you never heard of them.

My knees were frozen, so they didn’t hurt until late when I thawed out. We went home and Hannah went to a birthday party, Bethany had come home to visit and Grace and I gathered stuff for the Art Walk. It was only getting colder as we set up a table and Grace put her stuff on it. We got a square so it would be easier to sell things, because no one has cash anymore. She sold two mini-canvases before James showed up. Jack was wrapped up in my coat and falling asleep, but then woke up when he heard James. We grabbed some dinner from the food trucks and braved the cold for a bit longer before heading home.

Saturday -I wasn’t going to do Mrs. Ford today, but it’s appropriate because tonight is Denver’s Night at the Museums and if you haven’t been to the Black American West museum, it’s free tonight. Also, there was a tidbit in the news about her house (the museum.)

Justina Ford: Denver’s First Female African American Doctor

Justina Laurena Warren was born on January 22, 1871 in Knoxville, Illinois. Justina’s love for medicine was clear at a young age; she often dissected frogs and followed her mother, a nurse, when she saw patients. Justina went to Hering Medical School in Chicago. She married John Ford, a Baptist minister, in 1892. She continued her studies and graduated from medical school in 1899.

After her graduation, Justina was denied her medical license. The license examiner told her, “I feel dishonest taking a fee from you. You’ve got two strikes against you to begin with. First of all, you’re a lady, and second, you’re colored.” When she and John moved to Denver, racial discrimination prohibited Ford from joining the Colorado Medical Association or practicing in a hospital. So, she set up a practice in her home at 2335 Arapahoe Street.

Justina treated anyone who needed medical care, regardless of race, gender, language, citizenship, or ability to pay. Many of her patients were poor whites, African-Americans, and non-English speaking immigrants who were turned away from hospitals. Ford learned multiple languages to help treat her patients. Her patients paid her in goods, services, or money. It wasn’t until 1950 that Dr. Ford was allowed into the Colorado and American Medical Associations. Even then, she was the only female African-American doctor in all of Denver. Ford continued caring for patients until two weeks before her death on October 14, 1952. By the end of her life she had delivered almost 7,000 babies. Dr. Justina Ford’s house is now the home of the Black American West Museum.

We went to Casa Bonita for lunch and it occured to me that Casa Bonita and I will both turn 50 in just over 3 years. I had my 40th b-day party at Chuck E Cheese’s, so Casa Bonita would be a step up (I think.)

Sunday Hannah was so excited to bring her coffee painting to church (and to work at the coffee shop) that she and Bethany walked there, early, like super early, like no one was at the church early. So, James went and picked them up and they had coffee at Starbucks. Later, I took Hannah back to church and she made me a ghostly peppermint latte.

Phil was preaching on being generous.

Famous woman of the day – Wu Zetian – born 624 BC

She was the only female emperor in Chinese history. She used every ounce of her political skills and pulled Machiavellian maneuvers to gain and maintain her power. In dynastic China, Confucius deemed women unfit to rule. Nevertheless, Wu Zetian rose through the ranks in Chinese society. Wu’s intellect and beauty attracted Emperor Tai Tsung, who recruited her to his court as his concubine. After the emperor’s death, his son Kao Tsung succeeded him. Kao Tsung had been having an affair with Wu even before the death of his father. She became his second wife—a large step up from concubine—after his ascension.

Emperor Kao Tsung later died from a stroke, and Empress Wu began administrative duties in the court, eliminating and spying on those who posed an obstacle to her, and putting her youngest son into power. When her son stepped down in 690, Wu was crowned emperor of China. As emperor, Wu truly did effect change in China. She gave government positions to qualified scholars, reduced the army’s size, lowered unfair taxes on peasants, and increased agricultural production.

Bethany and Grace went to lunch by themselves, so James, Hannah and I went to Shake Shack. Back at home we watched some TV, went grocery shopping and James and I got out to my Harriet hike at Fly’n B park.

Dinners this week – rosemary pan fried chicken and risotto, beef stew, chicken quesadilla, cheeseburger macaroni, cheesy chicken and rice casserole, chinese chicken soup, black beans and sausage. (Chicken was on sale.)

Chinese Chicken Soup

2 tablespoons sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 teaspoons chopped fresh ginger root
2 tablespoons chile paste
1 pound chopped cooked chicken breast
1 quart chicken broth
2 teaspoons sugar
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 cup chopped celery
1 (3 ounce) package ramen noodles (or egg noddles or any quick cook noodle)
1/2 cup chopped green onion

In a large pot, heat oil over medium heat. Cook turmeric, ginger and chile paste in oil until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in chicken, broth, sugar, soy sauce and celery. Bring to a boil, then introduce noodles and cook until noodles are done. Serve garnished with green onions.

Goings on this week – school, taxonomy co-op at the zoo, HS skate, AF Planetarium field trip, Garden of the gods hike, Parker Police Explorers, GV ride-along (Hannah), youth group, CBI forensic field trip, dentist, Riize coffee shop, Mountainview coffee shop, church, HR concert band concert.

 

Week

It seems that there is little time these days. I wake up and it’s Friday, the week flew by again. Monday we had a Denver Police dept. tour, it was the video production area (and offices in that building, but it’s not THE police station, just offices.) It was cool to see the video guy in action, he taped the kids with a green screen and they got to add in the background. Hannah got a card from an officer and everyone got DPD dog tags, which was pretty cool.

It was Hallowteen night at the DMNS museum, Brad and Janet did not win the costume contest.

Tuesday we took Grace up to Keystone for the H2O science school. She was a bit nervous at being around total strangers, but then found out some of the kids were at the teen night and one girl used to be in our homeschool group. She ended up having a great time, making friends, getting to talk to water people, sampling and having some time without us. Hannah finally got to go to an Explorer meeting, they were working on combat care and tourniquets. She decided that Parker is a good fit and has to go to at least 5 meetings before getting her uniform and equipment. They let them wear fake guns on their belt and other tools on the belt to get used to the weight and feel of it, so that’s cool. I doubt there will be 4 meetings coming up (with breaks and they only go every other week) so it might be January before she gets her stuff.

Wednesday Hannah did school and then we watched the rest of season 2 of The Good Doctor and caught up on season 3. It started snowing right as I was dropping her at church. We ended up getting about 4 inches, but the roads were fine.

Thursday we did school and went up to get Grace. The road was fine with a few exceptions of packed snow on the road. I was worried about the road to the school, which was pretty snowy on Tuesday, but the plow had been by and packed it down (the road is dirt, so it never gets plowed to the bottom.) Jack had time to play in the snow before Grace showed up. We somehow made it to Westminster for the school Winter social in record time. Grace changed into her Janet costume and bam – they won the High school most original costume. The prize was an i-tunes card which Hannah turned into Psych the Movie and a few songs. We chilled for a bit, made dinner and then drove to the mall to walk around.

Friday I took James to work, we did school, grabbed water samples for October and drove out to Cottonwood farms. I wanted to wait until Tuesday, but it’s supposed to snow Sunday-Wednesday, so we went today. The corn did not grow this year for some odd reason, so the maze was easy for anyone over 3 feet tall. The girls picked out 2 big pumpkins and we took some pictures.

Hike, Sampling, Volunteering, Jazz, Mall school, Ballet!

After school we went on a hike. We were supposed to be somewhere else, but we ended up a bit lost. But, we rolled with it.

September water sampling.

Grace got some good news.

Hannah had her first volunteer day at GraceFull cafe, she washed dishes for 3 hours.

It was jazz night for me and James, a standing date night on the first Tuesday of the month. I think Phil keeps jazz night around just for us (because we are usually the only ones there.)

Wednesday Hannah did her school while Grace was working at church. We had lunch at the mall, Jack slept, we did some school and the girls walked around.

This mall is little (compared to Park Meadows), but I really like the chill vibe from the food court seating area. I remember when the mall was getting a facelift and I was worried about how it would turn out – but they did a really good job.

James and I went to Dang while the girls were at youth group. It’s Littleman ice cream, but it’s soft serve. We’d never been in that area of town before (Oneida park) and it’s really a cool spot. The store was done up very 60’s inside with 8 flavors of creamy soft serve, tons of toppings and games in the courtyard. There was a happening restaurant we took note of and a coffee shop that we’ve never been to before, so it was a nice outing.

Thursday we went to the Ellie Caulkins opera house to stand by for Don Quixote ballet seats. It was ‘sold out’, but as someone who coordinates field trips I know that you will NEVER have 100% of the people who said they are coming (paid or free) show up. I was right. It was full, but from our nosebleed spots we counted over 100 empty seats (and those are the ones we could see.)

We went to Union station for lunch and got to see the MOA”s Fall decorations.

 

The week so far

I posted this picture on Sunday, but I spoke too soon.

At the end of day 7 that ball was toast.

So, we start over.

Monday Hannah did her Earth science experiment about density, mass and volume. Basically she watched and took measurements as her ice filled rock tube fell apart.

It was Monday HS skate, which normally we would not be able to attend, but since we don’t have dance this semester we went. At first there was hardly anyone there, maybe 7 kids skating. Eventually it went up to about 23, still that is low.

Tuesday we put Jack in daycare, did school, then went downtown to the Ralph S. Carr Judicial center for a tour.

There were no cases going on in the courtrooms, but that just meant that our guide was able to talk and explain the purpose of the courts, tell us interesting things about the details in the room and note some historic people that practiced close to there (this is a pretty new building) such as Ruth Ginsberg who prosecuted a case not far from the building.

Since it’s a newer building, it has a green roof per the green roof initiative. It also has a lot of public art, since 1% of a buildings budget needs to be for art. We went up to the 4th floor, then down to the law library. The windows in the library are stained glass and each one has a historic document or type of law engraved in it (First Sumerian laws, Hammurabi’s code, Magna Carta, etc.) Also, some of the art has amendments lightly written over the picture.

The most interesting part of the tour is the learning center, a space that has interactive games and learning tools for introducing ideas about law and concepts of the same.

When we picked Jack up he had already tried to escape once – if I’m late picking him up he tries to sneak out under a big dog, sometimes he makes it, sometimes not.

Hannah and I went to an Explorer post meeting, but they just voted to change their meeting days to Wednesdays and Hannah isn’t keen on the idea of giving up every other Wednesday. So, we’re trying to find another post (looks like Parker will be our best bet.)

Wednesday was 9/11, we started the day with library school. I’m a woman of my word, they wanted a quiet space (away from Jack) to do school outside of the house once a week, they got it.

After lunch we grabbed trash bags, gloves and Jack and headed to Montbello for a Kindness Krewe day of service on 9/11. Sometimes on 9/11 we attend ceremonies, sometimes we climb stairs, sometimes we do service. I asked a friend if she knew of a place that needed cleaning, she quickly said, ‘Montbello Central park’. So, that’s why I chose that park. There were 4 other families, we grabbed bags and took off in different directions. I usually take an after picture with how many bags of trash we collected, but everyone threw away their bags before I could – but we had about 5 kitchen trash bags full and multiple small grocery bags full of trash.

When we were done we went by the Arsenal to see the bison, they just happened to be walking across the road as we drove up.

Then it was home to make dinner and off to youth group for Hannah.

Wed, Thur, Friday

From Union Station jazz Tuesday night.

Wednesday the girls did school, I took Jack on some errands – the post office, the UPS store, the eye doc, Petsmart. Thursday James was coming back home so I cleaned the bathrooms, vaccummed, swept, cleaned the kitchen and did laundry. The girls did school and then we took the kayak and tubes to Gravel pond for some homeschool PE.

Jack and I went to pick up James and Jack went nuts in the car. He missed Daddy.

Friday we did school and Jack broke his new ball.

Hannah had a Criminal justice lab based on this TED talk –

Grace learned about a new invention that makes handling sea critters in their natural environment a breeze.

Soft Robot Gives Jellyfish A Hug

Grace and I went out to get water samples and Jack jumped right in (because there was such a big sandbar. )

Upstream.

Right bank.

Downstream.

Left bank.

Tomorrow we’re going to visit the Air Force chapel before they close it for renovations and then we’re checking out a Food hall in the Springs.

First day of school

Jack – Subjects – chasing the ball, chewing on the ball, destroying the ball, chasing squirrels, chasing rabbits, sleeping, eating puppuccinos, hiking, swimming (as long as he doesn’t really touch the water too much), running around like a terrier.

Likes – balls, food that you are eating, puppuccinos, eating cookies from Zoey’s Natural Pet Market, playing at daycare at PetSmart, sleeping in the car, sleeping in the bed, sleeping on the couch.

Hannah 9th grade Destinations Career Academy of Colorado, pathway – Law enforcement.
Classes – English, Algebra I, Earth science, Astronomy, Intro to Criminal Justice.
Extras – volunteering, working at church coffee shop, co-ops, field trips, Police Explorer post, hiking, swimming, sign language, ukulele.

Grace 12th grade Destinations Career Academy of Colorado, pathway – Agriscience.
Classes – British literature, Practical Math, Forensics, Chemistry, Independent Study.
Extras – volunteering, working in child care, co-ops, field trips, hiking, swimming, digital art, art in general, River Watch station manager.

Me – I am planning more older kid events and field trips – the Opera, the Ballet, the Symphony. I’m looking out for teen library events and get togethers. I’m hosting Teacher’s day and night outs, reading, drawing, collaging, practicing my ukulele, getting some ASL in, maybe some NIA time, hiking, swimming and now kayaking.

The first day of school started with Hannah and Grace doing some on-line work, then we went to the library to walk shelter dogs. I’m not saying we’re getting another dog, but…this one was cute.

Someone asked it Jack was up for adoption – no!

This dog was nice, but it shed everywhere.

We ate lunch on a bench and went back to walk Hera again, though if we got her we’d change her name to Juniper or Piper or something like that. Then we went to Solid Grounds for coffee and school. Grace was investigating the Blainville beaked whale and Hannah was taking notes in Criminal justice.

Later we’re heading to Union Station for dinner and LAPOMPE.

Kindness Krewe, Clear creek (finally)

This morning we loaded up socks, water, oranges and bananas and went downtown to hand out the stuff to the local homeless/druggie population. Beat comment was from a lady who said ‘No’ when I was like ‘Do you want….’ and then she said, ‘Oh, sorry, I thought you were handing out Bibles.’ I said, ‘You can’t eat Bibles.’

This guy was doing free haircuts for anyone that walked up.

Then we went to Clear creek (that is finally slow enough to tube/swim safely.)

Videos here and here.