September 06, 2006

First Field Trip of the Year

Ted was given Tuesday after Labor Day off work...normally he would have gotten Friday off as a family day, but since the Red Flag exercise ended last week, they got Tuesday of this week instead. With that in mind, I planned for us to take a field trip on Tuesday so we could avoid the holiday madness downtown but still have Daddy enjoy some time with us.

We did some light school activities at home after breakfast--Bible story, verse review, Charis' handwriting page (capital J and S!) and Tobin's reading lesson (number 57!). Ted packed a lunch for us while I worked with the kids, and I packed our Sonlight books to take in the van to read while he drove.

We headed for the parking lot at the Bellagio hotel. A friend of mine had told me about a fun miniature train exhibit at their conservatory, with a USA theme. It sounded interesting, and hey, it was free, so we decided it would work well with our Machines & Transportation theme for the week. I read a lot of theme-related stories and units on the trip downtown, which made the half-hour drive go quickly. We piled out of the van, and the kids piled into the wagon--we were very glad we had brought it later on!

The conservatory is not very big, but it's beautiful, and the display was definitely worth seeing. The kids were enchanted with all the miniature landmarks, not to mention the plants and the trains themselves. Having been stationed in the D.C. area before this assignment, Ted and I enjoyed seeing the miniatures of the Capitol building, the Lincoln Memorial, Washington Monument, and Jefferson Memorial. The kids even recognized the Capitol building from the time we toured it with Grandma and Grandpa K.

It was a fun place to walk around. There was even a little fairy tale section, where we could see the 3 little pigs' houses, Rapunzel in her tower with her hair flowing down, Tom Thumb's cottage, and a big castle back in the woods.

After awhile the kids started saying they were hungry, so Ted pulled them in the wagon out to the front of the Bellagio, where we parked under some shade and had a picnic lunch. We were hoping to view a fountain show, but unfortunately they didn't start until 3 p.m. that day...guess the summer tourist season is officially over! So we decided to head home since it was pretty hot and neither Ted nor I felt inclined to walk about the city much, even though it was devoid of the hordes of people we usually encounter on the few occasions when we do go downtown.

All in all, it was another fun home schooling day, and it was fun to have Ted with us on our first field trip!

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