Wednesday, July 2, 2014

The Lake and a Trebuchet

I've been slacking this week in Camp Awesome--between appointments and a sore knee I haven't put in as much effort as I normally do at the beginning of the summer.  But I wanted to make up for it a little today (even though I had another appointment before my knee surgery this month.)  

The kids asked if we could go to the local lake, and normally I hate going anywhere water related with all three kids by myself.  I hate cold water.  We live right near the Atlantic, and as much as I like the beach, and dipping my feet in the water, I really don't like going in far enough to actually swim.  As in, I would rather you drive nails down the chalkboard for hours on end, as long as I don't have to put my body in that freezing cold pit of hell.  But Rose loves it.  When I say loves it, I mean you have to pry her screaming little body out of the water, and as you're trying to gather your items to go home, she's running back towards the water.  

Punkgirl and Rose enjoying her reflection in the water.  This was right before Rose melted down diva-style about leaving.

But it was particularly hot and humid, which meant the lake, unlike the Atlantic, wouldn't be so bad.  

We had a great hour, and when we got home I felt like we had had such a great time that it brought home how much I had really slacked.  I usually don't let them go anywhere without a challenge first!  Well, it was too late for that, but I did do one other activity from my lesson plan.  It's "Dangerous Camp For Kids" Week, so we built a trebuchet!  If you're wondering what that is, so was I until a friend explained it.  It's basically a catapult, with a weight on one end.  

When my friend had said she built one with her kids, I looked it up, and I decided it was beyond me.  I am not in any way, shape, or form mechanically-inclined, and I have zero depth perception.  

But I really wanted to teach them how to make them!  So I did a little research and found this:

It was so step-by-step easy even I could do it! (Ok, there were one or two spots where Happyboy had to read the instructions and explain what he was supposed to do...he totally has Coffeeguy's aptitude for science!)  

Happyboy could use the hot glue gun, with supervision.  This is the base of the trebuchet.

Zing!! The weight pulled down, the basket pulled up, and voila! The trebuchet is a marvel of medieval science.

This was so much easier than I thought it would be. But it still kept him busy for two hours--although, because of the hot glue gun use, that meant I couldn't really leave!  

All in all, it was a productive day (as far as the kids go), even if I did manage to stick my finger in hot glue, bring a pound of sand into the car, and get a sunburn on one small patch on my arm. (Hey, I don't call myself the suck at home mom for nothing!)

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