Thursday, December 17, 2009

Kindergartener's Celebrate the Holidays

What a great week we had! On Tuesday we had our holiday party with lots of fun crafts, a special lunch, and our book exchange. The kids had a wonderful time. On Wednesday we had pajama day and watched holiday classics along with some other small holiday activities. Here are some highlights from the day. I hope everyone has a safe and happy break.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

A Visit from the Humane Society

On Friday we were treated to a visit from the Humane Society. We had a young lady bring her dog Noodle to help us learn about the importance of how to take care of a pet dog and the items you would need to effectively take care of a dog. She also taught us what to do if we encounter a dog without an owner. Ask your child what to do in this situation! Here are some highlights from our program.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Kindergarten Pow Wow

Through the last couple weeks we have been learning about our tribe - the Nez Perce. They are a fascinating tribe that had a lot of respect for their land and their people. The kids loved learning about what excellent hunters they were, how they breed the Appaloosa horses, and how they respected the buffalo as their source of life. Here are some highlights from our big day.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Long Night Moon - our November Book of the Month

This month our Principal Mrs. Phillips has a special reading of our November Book of the Month. This is a beautiful story that the whole family will enjoy. Here is Long Night Moon.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Skills Block in Kindergarten

Skills Block is a very important part of our day. In Kindergarten we spend about the first 45 minutes of our day in Skills Block. During this time we work on phonics, phonemic awareness, vocabulary, shared reading etc. We do many whole group activities which focus on these different areas. On Wednesdays, we will be doing Skills Block Centers which reinforces the skills we have been working on that week and prior. Here are some examples of activities from this week.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Our First Kindergarten Awards Ceremony

On Thursday we had our first Awards Ceremony. The kids worked very hard this first nine week period and it showed through their awards.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Rafiki turns 8 weeks old

WOW...Rafiki has changed so much in the month that we have had him. He is not quite so little anymore. He still fits in one hand but not as well. He has learned how to run at full speed across the house! He loves to play with our dog Maxie by attacking her. He also loves to steal her toys and attack them too.

He learned to climb everything (even the stuff he is not supposed to).

The funniest thing he learned to do is hiss - he thinks it is going to scare the Maxie but it doesn't. When he gets mad, he wags his tail back and forth and puts his ears back. It only takes a moment until he is off running again. We go to the vet this week for his first set of shots and to see how much he is growing. The next big stage for a kitten is 12 weeks. I can't wait to see the difference!

Friday, October 30, 2009

Kindergarten Fire Safety

On Thursday we had a fire safety day for kindergarteners. It was a great morning and the kids were excited to learn. We began with a demonstration lesson where two girls where in a house while a fire started. The older girl crawled into the younger sisters room and attempted to wake her with no luck. The firemen came into the house and after doing a sweep found them both unconscious in the bedroom. The girls were taken safely out of the house. After the demo, kids were able to ask questions and the firemen showed their uniforms. They also discussed coming up with a fire escape plan and when to change the batteries on the smoke detectors (We included these two items as homework for the night). Then each class was allowed to go out and look at the fire truck up close and see all the cool things it includes. We finished our day by coming back and writing about it. Some kids wanted to finish their pictures so look for samples of work posted soon.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Pumpkin Sense

Science is a subject that almost all kids love. One unit that we do during Kindergarten is a pumpkin unit. During this time we learn how to become better scientist by practicing what good scientists do - making observations of the natural world using 5 senses, recording data, collaborating with a partner, create and record visual representations, understand that learning can come by observations.

Over the last couple days we have been exploring pumpkins. We have been learning how we use our senses to learn about pumpkins and make connections to the world around us. We had whole pumpkins, cut up pumpkins, and even pumpkin pudding to help us be better scientists. Here are some of the connections the kids made while doing this inquiry:

When I saw the pumpkin it made me think about...
pumpkin pie because it's the same color.
carving a pumpkin because it's big like mine.

When I smelled the pumpkin it made me think about...
mud because mud smells like that too.
dirty water because puddles smell like that. (one of my favorite answers)

When I felt the pumpkin it made me think about...
worms because that's what they feel like moving around. (another favorite)
pudding because it was squishy and slimy.

When I tasted the pumpkin it made me think about...
pie because it is creamy like that.
whip cream because it kinda fluffy.

When I hear a pumpkin it makes me think about... (they thumped on the pumpkin)
someone closing a door because it bangs.
someone knocking at the door because it goes knock knock.

After this exploration stage, the students discussed their answers and we as a class began to think about how we use our senses all the time. Sometimes we don't even realize that we are using them. Next we will discuss how our senses work together (for ex. taste/smell, touch/sight) to help us experience our world.

During this time, we have also been making daily observations about which pumpkins last longer - carved or uncarved. We began by noticing how a cut apple changes quickly over time. Our next step was to see if any changes happen to a pumpkin by cutting it. We will be finishing that up by Friday (the carved pumpkin is starting to mold and become nasty). Ask your child what he/she has noticed about the pumpkins. We will be learning why that happens as well.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Literary Carnival

We had a great day Friday for our Literary Carnival. Here are some highlights of the day.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Rafiki - 6 weeks old

Little Rafiki is definitely growing and changing. He started eating real kitten food and wants to eat all the time. He doesn't get the kitten milk anymore and has been drinking water instead. The kitten food gives him a lot of energy which he uses to run around the house. The funniest thing Rafiki has learned is to act tough against Maxie (our Mini-Schnauzer) even though she is much larger than him. He arches his back, sticks his hair up, and points his ears back. Then he charges at her full speed. He has learned how to hide behind the furniture and attack us when we walk by. His little claws are sharp and the one thing he hasn't done is learned how to release them when he is holding on to something. He is still pretty small and I can hold him in one hand (if he sits still enough). I am sure he will continue to grow a lot over the next couple weeks.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Diamond D Ranch!

What a great day we had on our first field trip. The kids got to do so many things: wagon ride, feeding goats, riding ponies, bounce house, learning about cows and horses, the drum roll, a nature walk, feeding catfish, and so much more. I hope they came home and told you all about it. Here are the highlights of our day.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Kindergarten Alliteration

Last week we learned about alliteration. The kids had a great time learning "Peter Piper" and seeing how fast they could read it. On Friday the kids were able to share their silly sentences they made at home using alliteration with the same beginning sound of their name. Here are some examples from our class.

* Ethan eats eggs every day.

* Nick knows not to knock near napping ninjas.

* Lynethe likes lollipops a lot.
A lot of lollipops Lynethe likes
If Lynethe likes a lot of lollipops
Where are the lollipops that Lynethe likes a lot.

* Skylar screams scarily at scarecrows.

* Addison ate eightly apples in the attic.

* Jack jumped a jack-o-lantern.

* Keely caught catfish in the creek.

* Simran sings silly songs.

* Seans six stickers shined so shiny.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Read for the Record

The Very Hungry Caterpillar from Debbie Harbour on Vimeo.

Today we celebrated Jumpstart's Read for the Record 2009. We shared the book The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle. This is a great story about how a tiny caterpillar eats everything imaginable over the course of a week and becomes a big, fat caterpillar. After staying in a cocoon for 2 weeks he emerges as a beautiful butterfly. Not only were the students treated to this special book but enjoyed a puppet show during the read aloud. A special thank you to our own Ms. Cordoza for making all our classes a set! We decided to record the read aloud so that the kids could enjoy it from home any time he/she chose. We hope you like it too.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The Life Cycle of a Kitten

Yesterday I was thinking about how excited the kids were to see my new kitten (which we have named Rafiki). I realized that I have never had a kitten this young - yes he is younger than originally thought. The vet told us on Monday that he is about 4 weeks. So knowing that information, I thought it would fun to document Rafiki's life cycle.

As a newborn, Rafiki was pretty tiny when he was born. It took about a week for him to open his eyes. Now he is 4 weeks old. Right around the time we found him he was just learning how to leave his mommy's side for a few minutes at a time. He wasn't very good at walking - he still isn't. But he is getting less clumsy. He is trying to learn how to run but often falls down or turns his body by mistake. Jessie plays with him a lot so that he gets lots of practice learning how to grow up. He is still on kitten milk but also eating a little special canned food. He has easily learned how to use his little kitten box as well. At this age, he would have still been sleeping with his mommy to keep warm so we have a special bed for him that has a stuffed cat that feels close to a real cat. He snuggles into that every night.

Rafiki is doing great and we can't wait to see how he will grow and change each week.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Meet the newest member of the Harbour Family

On Friday, Mrs. Harbour adopted a stray kitten found outside Chets Creek. We haven't named him yet since Matt and Jessie haven't agreed on one. Hopefully we will have a name for him by morning. The vet said he is probably about 6 weeks old. We look forward to watching him grow.

A Test of our Senses

Last week Mrs. Alvarado's class joined us for a great inquiry lesson. Both of our classes visited stations in the classroom where their senses were put to the test. Which food was salty? Which container smelled like popcorn? What mystery bag had an object that was rough? The kids had a great time learning how their senses are important for them as they learn to make observations. Make sure you ask your child what his/her favorite part was.

What is a Standards Based Bulletin Board?

Each month you will find new work posted on the board outside our classroom. This is our Standards Based Bulletin Board. A standards board is where work that meets the "standard" is displayed. The teacher includes what standard the work meets, a task to explain what the work entails, work samples, and commentary. Our first standards board was a math board that included Patterns as our work sample. Here are some pictures of our board if you were unable to come see it. (If you click on the individual picture it will enlarge).

What do you do in Reader's Workshop?

Over the last couple weeks we have been working on retellings of our favorite Star Books. The kids love the stories they have been hearing over and over again. One of their favorite stories is The Three Billy Goats Gruff. Here are some pictures of our little puppet masters.

Monday, September 28, 2009

What is Reader's Workshop

Each day we spend an hour of our morning in Reader's Workshop. At the beginning of Kindergarten, this time is a little shorter due to the length of time young children are able to work independently. In the workshop, we begin with a 10 minute mini-lesson where the children come to the floor and I teach them a reading strategy. For the first couple weeks of school, our mini-lessons revolve around the rituals and routines of our workshop such as "What Good Reader's Do" or " How to Read a Book". This is also the time that we start introducing our Literary Stations which we will begin this week. After our mini-lesson, the students return to their seats with his/her own book bin and read for about 10 minutes quietly. At the beginning of Kindergarten the book bins contain books that are simple ABC books, books from home, nursery rhyme notebooks, and maybe a favorite book from the room. We also include one of our Star Books in each child's bag so he/she can practice retelling familiar books (especially with the puppets we made in class). Although most children at this time are unable to read, they mimic reading practices by what has been modeled for them such as predicting what the book will be about, pointing to the words, looking at beginning sounds, and looking at the pictures. As the year progresses the books will become books that are "just right" for them individually. After independent reading, the students work in Literacy Stations. Once again they are reading during this time. The last 10 minutes of our workshop is our closing. Here they are able to discuss what they learned from our mini-lesson that day and how they applied that during their reading time. The closing is very important to our workshop because it provides students the opportunity to discuss their own learning and how that impacts what we are doing in the classroom. Ask your child each day what he/she did in Reader's Workshop. You will be amazed!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Science Fun at Home!

We've been talking about how we use our five senses. Today we were reading a cool book that has some fun exciting activities your child can do at home. If he/she does one of these activities, write a note about what he/she observed. Anyone who does the activity by Monday gets a special reward. Have fun!

Our eyes help us see:

Dim the lights. Look at your eyes in the mirror. Are your pupils big? Now turn on a bright light. Did you see your pupils get smaller? Your pupils get bigger and smaller to let in just the right amount of light.

Our ears help us hear:
Turn on the radio or TV. Play it very softly. Stand on the other side of the room. Cup your hands behind your ears. The sound seems louder, doesn't it?

Hickory Dickory Dock

Over the last couple weeks we have been learning new nursery rhymes. Here is one our favorites. Hope you enjoy the video.

Hickory Dickory Dock from Debbie Harbour on Vimeo.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Our Kindergarten Mathematician of the Day

Every day we have a special student who is our "Mathematician of the Day". This child receives a special sticker and becomes the assistant for Calendar Math. The Mathematician of the Day leads us in determining the pattern of our calendar, finding the complete date, keeping track of our days in school, and completing our counting tape - which your child will teach you about at Open House this week. As the year progresses, so will the level of Calendar Math activities. Watch for your child to be the Mathematician of the Day!

What is Star Student?

At the beginning of the year we work on a unit called Star Names. Each day we begin with activities based on our "Star Student". Each child in the class has the opportunity to be the "star student" throughout the first couple weeks of school. Using his/her name, we complete fun activites such as comparing their names to other children, finding words that begin with the same sounds, and make noticings about his/her name. At the end of our whole group, the students draw a picture of the Star Student and write his/her name on top. We put these drawings together as a keepsake book. It is a time that makes all our children feel like they are a star in our small world.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Learning About Our 5 Senses

Last week we began talking about how scientists use their 5 senses to help them. This week we will begin reading books about each of our senses and how they help us in the world around us. We will also be referencing our newest glog - Our 5 Senses. Ask your child this week about their 5 senses and what body part goes with each sense.

September Book of the Month

Each month our principal chooses a special book for our school's Book of the Month. This month our book is 14 Cows for America by Carmen Agra Deedy. This is a heartwarming true story about one nation's gift to America. After the devastating attacks on our nation on 9/11, Kimeli, a Maasai warrior, returns to Kenya and tells about the tragic events to his tribe. They are so moved by the tragic story that they offer their most prized possession as a gesture of goodwill in an effort to reach out to a suffering nation - 14 cows.

Last week we shared this book in our class. The children shared what was their most prized possessions that they would be willing to give to others. On Friday we were treated to hearing Mrs. Phillips read the book. Ask your child what the cows meant to the Maasai people and what he/she would be willing to give to another person who were suffering.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Busy Kindergarteners

Hard to believe that we are going into our third week of school. The kids have been busy learning all the rituals and routines of our class. Last week we began our nursery rhyme unit and our Star Book vocabulary unit. Our nursery rhyme unit is taught in our skill block and focuses on phonemic awareness. Throughout the day we have been listening to our Star Books such as Caps for Sale and The 3 Billy Goats Gruff. We use these stories to help us learn how to retell stories orally and through dramatic play. These books are all rich in language which we use to help broaden their vocabulary. In Writer's Workshop we have learned how to tell "sharing events" to our friends and begin to write those stories with pictures and words. Math has been a time of exploration. Students have learned about the different manipulatives we have in class and have had free time to explore all the many ways they can be used. This week we were also able to finish our math diagnostic test which will help us know how to best teach your child. In Science we have been learning about what Science means and what Scientists do. If you haven't checked out our glog - make sure you do. This time of the year is also a great time to learn about family which we have been doing in Social Studies. Students have been able to draw and share pictures of their families. Somewhere in between all this they have had time to do some crafts, enjoy recess, and play with new friends.

Check in frequently to see all the great things we are doing. Have your child write a comment about what he/she has liked most about the first two weeks of school.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Science is Everywhere!

Last week we began learning what Science is all about and what a scientist does. We kept a record of everything we learned. Check out our new glog that we are using to learn all about Science!

What is a Scientist?

Monday, August 24, 2009

What a Great Day!

Today was a great first day of school for all our new kindergarteners. What a busy day. We spent some time drawing and talking about our families, went to see a great band, practiced our drills, went on a scavenger hunt for Chester the Raccoon after hearing his book, had recess, and even started to make our Chester hats. Of course we didn't get to everything we wanted to do today (like posting the best part of the day) but we did manage to squeeze in our first day of kindergarten picture (which will be sent home later this week).

The highlight of our day was the group ktg entertainment which played many different genres of music for us. Check out their website. They played jazz, classical, disco, carribean, and even a song from Michael Jackson. Here are some picture highlights of the group.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Orientation was a Success

Thank you to all the families that joined us for orientation on Friday. We had a great turnout and I was glad to see all the excited faces on the kids. Mrs. Cordoza and I are very excited about our first day of school tomorrow. Check out the blog as we will post what each child said about his/her first day of school.

Thursday, August 20, 2009


I would like to welcome all the new kids to our Kindergarten Country Jamboree. Check out our blog frequently to see all the great things happening in our class. Make sure you post a comment once in a while to share your thoughts as well. I am looking forward to a great year.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Chet and Chelsey's Travels

Now that summer is here, I thought I would post all the places that Chet and Chelsey traveled to this year with our friends. Maybe you will be traveling to these same areas. Don't forget to check out other great places their cousins traveled on the Traveling Chet blog.

Charleston, SC
On October 18th the three of us were able to visit the USS Yorktown with the Cub Scouts troup. Since there three kids in one family going on the trip, all three of us were able to go with them on the ship.

We arrived at Patriots Point in Charleston Harbor, South Carolina about 6:05 pm.

We were able to board about 6:45 when all the scouts from the pack had arrived. (We found one other Chet had arrived for the weekend.) Once we boarded we went straight to the flight deck to receive instructions. The girls were assigned to sleep in the Officers Quarters (one rickety, thin stepped staircase) and the boys were assigned the Crews Quarters(one thin stepped, rickety staircase indoors and a second similar staircase outside - in the Dark Night). We were all lead up to our assigned sleeping areas by group.

The humans choose bunks, settled in and then left us behind for naps about 7:45 while they went to search for supper. They came back about 9:15, we needed to wait for the fire drill alarm. The alarm went off about 9:45. We met downstairs and we were counted (a few times) to make sure we were all there.

Afterward some folks went around looking at the Aircraft Carrier, others (like us) headed up to our bunks to get some shut-eye. The USS Yorktown sounded Taps at 10:55 and then it was lights out. Marcie was really tired, but I felt a little odd. It was hard to realize the type of lives these sailors lived as they slept in such close quarters, with very little space for any of their belongings. So far from home and in dangerous situations and just the waiting, I have a lot more respect for their situation and sacrifice now.

We got up at 7:00 when Reville played. (Mom had got up a lot earlier and snuck a shower/ it was a strange experience. Mom said she had seen worse showers.) Then we met the boys and bears downstairs on the Hanger Deck to wait for roll call. I was surprised to see it was raining outside, the ship seems so open tot the weather, but then you walk to a truly open place and find the design of the ship is not what it seems. Then the entire group went downstairs to the Mess Hall, our group ate in the officers Mess, we had French Toast, Sausage and grits for breakfast. After breakfast we looked at the displays on the Aircraft Carrier for awhile.

We watched a film called The Fighting Lady which was filmed entirely on the USS Yorktown Aircraft Carrier during the 1940's. It showed a lot of detail of how the ship ran, and how the men took care of the day to day stuff like cooking and laundry. The USS Yorktown had also retrieved the Apollo 8 Spacecraft when it returned to Earth after orbiting the moon. There was a very large model of the capsule on display with buttons on it to replay sounds that we remember from that event in history.

There is a large memorial, which lists all the sailors who gave their lives serving their country. Neither M. or M. were very interested, I think it is hard for them to understand.

Afterward, we went up to a radio room. We were able to see how the Short Wave Radio Operators do their jobs. It was fun. We spoke to a man living in Italy, he was not happy because we had accidentally interrupted a conversation he was having with someone else. Then we got someone in South Carolina nearby to talk to us, we were able to ask her questions and she was certainly asking us questions.

Then we went outside and looked at a real submarine. It was so small inside. I couldn't believe how fast everyone was running through the ship. I didn't get a chance to see a lot of interesting things.

Then we went back up to bunks for a nap while the family went to a scheduled Oceanography class, it was really a great class, but then they went outside and family didn't have enough heavy clothes on to finish the class because the weather had become rather blistery and cold.

They went out of the Ship for some heavier clothes, souvenirs and lunch (at Jersey Mike's.) They came back after lunch and were touring the Destroyer Lafferty when M. fell down a stairway and hurt herself. A volunteer saved the day and caught her arm before she could hit her head!

After that the day really slowed down, they found a hotel, packed up and stayed there Saturday night to keep from straining M.'s leg anymore on the stairways.

At the hotel we took an elevator, ordered Pizza and watched Alice in Wonderland on TV. It was nice and warm.

Sunday morning we drove around Charleston/Mount Pleasant area. There was a Plantation called Boone Farm that we were supposed to go to on Saturday also, but couldn't because we ran out of time.

We had a great time!

Ft. Laudrdale, FL
What an adventure! I, Chelsea, traveled with R. and her Nana on an airplane to a tropical paradise. The trip started off with a lot of excitement, because one of the engines on the airplane would not start! I got a little nervous, but quickly was at ease as R. held me close assuring everything would be just fine.

We were on our way to visit R.’s Aunt and Uncle who live in South Florida to celebrate R.’s birthday. When we arrived we were a bit tired because the flight got in quite late, so we went to bed. The next morning I woke up and found myself in a beautiful home near the beach with breathtaking views of downtown Ft. Lauderdale. It’s was so exciting to explore a new home, with three levels! The patios on the third level were my personal favorite. R. liked the lower level gardens with fountains.

We went to the Ft. Lauderdale Museum of Discovery and Science which was a blast. There are so many educational activities, actually over 200 interactive exhibits, including sharks, alligators and a simulated rocket adventure.

We also took a trip to the Ft. Lauderdale Beach. The white sands of South Florida are about as close to the Caribbean as you can get. The water was warm, although I never fully got in. I did not want to mess up my hair! I enjoyed soaking up the sun’s rays with R.

A trip to a beautiful garden center and nursery was also a lot of fun. There were so many different tropical plants with various bright colors to choose from. They also had all sorts of fountains and garden furniture. Auntie, R. and I sat in a hammock and it flipped over on us. It was so funny. We laughed and laughed. We even got a picture of it!

What is a trip without shopping? We strolled down the Ft. Lauderdale Riverwalk, where you can take a water taxi up and down the river with all sorts of shops, restaurants, arts and entertainment to enjoy. It is always fun to get a little souvenir of your trip. R. got a beautiful necklace.

The most exciting part was celebrating R.’s birthday. She got all sorts of nice gifts and Uncle bought her a beautiful bouquet of flowers. Similar to the ones we’d seen at the garden center. It was a wonderful time traveling with R. and I so enjoyed getting to spend time with her and her lovely family.

Until my next adventure,

Orlando, FL

Last week Chelsea went with M. to Orlando. She had lots of fun.

She went on the Merry Go Round.

She saw cars.

We took a picture next to a car.

Chelsea took a picture on a picnic table.

She took a picture with me on the picnic table.
Me and Chelsea had lots of fun.

Gatlinburg, TN
WOW...I just got back from a great trip to the Smokey Mountains. Last week I went with Mrs. H. and her family up to Gatlinburg. We had a great time. The first day we arrived after a 9 hour car ride. We were tired when we got to our cabin.

The next morning we got up and there was frost and ice everywhere. It was SO COLD. We even took pictures of the ice crystals on the car window.

That day we went to Pigeon Forge and in the National Park. I loved going down to the river and walking around.

By the end of the day we were cold and tired. The next morning they got up and went skiing at Ober Gatlinburg. They made me stay behind so I wouldn't get lost on the mountain. On Thursday we jumped in the car and got to go play putt putt golf in Pigeon Forge. That was a blast.
We spend the afternoon downtown Gatlinburg doing all the tourist stuff. The next day it was time to get in the car and come back home - 10 hours to get back. Here are some photos from the trip.

Dallas & Houston, TX

My trip to Texas with B. was so much fun! We left Jacksonville early in the morning and drove for 13 hours. When we finally arrived in Houston, it was very dark. I was so tired of sitting in the car all day.

We spent our first night in Houston at the Mainstay Suites Hotel. It was a very nice hotel. The hotel staff were very nice and made sure we had everything we needed……

After spending one night, it was time for us to continue our trip to Dallas. It was a shorter ride than our ride from Jacksonville. We were so excited when we got to Dallas. It looked so different from home.

Before we headed back to Houston, we decided to stop by and try Boba Tea. I didn’t want to try the tea but I did try the vanilla ice cream. It was so yummy…….

By the time we got back to Houston, it was almost dinner time. We headed straight back to the Mainstay Suites Hotel. It was so cool! We got the same room we stayed in on our first night in Houston.

The next day we went to eat at a Vietnamese restaurant before heading to the Houston Space Center. The food was so yummy! I had to sit in my own chair while B. ate his lunch.

The NASA Space Center was so cool. It had so many cool things to play with and see. I even watched a video about Space. I learned so much! The Space rockets at NASA were so cool. We went really close to a real space rocket.

After a fun day at the NASA Space Center, we had a wedding to attend. We had so much fun that night. It was a very nice wedding. After dancing all night, it was time to head back home to Jacksonville. We slept all the way home. We had a lot of fun but it sure was nice to be home again.

Atlanta, GA & Gatlinburg, TN

This is Chelsey. I was able to go with F. to Gatlinburg and Atlanta over holiday break. The first day at Atlanta we saw F.'s cousin. She was very nice. I saw her whole family that night. We went out to a restaurant that was called Slice. It was very fancy . When we got back we went to sleep. The next day for breakfast I ate hot chocolate and cereal. It was yummy.

I went in the woods with F. and G. and her cousins. We saw old cars and bottles and news paper and old houses. It was chilly. After that I met a new friend. His name was Bailey and he was smart too. He let me chew on his bone. Then we had a little nap. Then I played Guitar Hero with F. and everyone. I was rocking. I went to bed. In the morning I had breakfast before we went to Gatlinburg.

We got to our hotel and unpacked. Then we went to play in the snow.

It was cool looking. Then we went back and went to sleep. F. snored. Then we got up and went to explore. First we looked at candy shop. Then we saw a scarey girl. Then we went on top of the mountain and ate. We came back down and ice skated. Then we went back to our hotel. The next day was F.'s sisters birthday so we celebrated by letting her explore and then we went home. F. took me back to school. It was so cool. The end.

Budapest, Hungary
I left on a GREAT adventure to Budapest, Hungary with K. Mimi Jean and Great Grandfather. Mimi 1st flew to Chicago, Il. to pick up Great Grandpa. They boarded Lufthansa Airways to Munich, Germany then boarded a connecting flight to Budapest, Hungary. I met many family member while she traveled. I visited Town Square in Zalaergeszeg, Hungary. I visited Austria, Germany. I also Went to West Inn Cafe and picked out pastries with Mimi. I had a great time!

North Carolina

I got to go to North Carolina with C. When she heard she was going she was excited. We packed up a lot of stuff. When we were ready, we went.

We drove a lot. We all saw at least one deer on the way. Her dad got them a new movie and things for our DS.

When we got there, we got lost, but we found the office. We brought their dogs too. We chewed gum a lot. When you get up really high your ears pop. We lived at the very top of the mountain.

When you got in, you were at the top of the stairs and then you go down the stairs really quick because our bedroom is down stairs. We went in there was 2 bunk beds and a couch and a tv and a radio. Our tv didn’t work so we used C.’s Mom’s and Dad’s tv.

There were three bedrooms and 6 beds. C., her mom, sister, Sadie and Curtis and me slept in one bed and her dad had a big bed by himself. C. woke up and woke her mom up too so we watched some television, got dressed. We waited until it was the afternoon and it started to snow.

It was cool. It was my first time seeing snow. We stayed inside for a while and then we went out for dinner. Our dinner was…spaghetti and pizza. We ate so much of the spaghetti that we didn’t eat the pizza. Then we went to the store and we got toys and one candy each and then we went back to the place and we slept.

Then we woke back up and we ate breakfast. We watched some tv and then we went…tubing. C. went the first time with her Dad and then by herself. The last time she went on her sister’s lap. Then we went back to the place, watched some tv and soon it was night.

We packed up and left. We returned the key and they were happy, we were the first ones to return a key. Then we got McDonald’s and left for good.

Washington, DC
Over Spring Break I was lucky to go with Z. to Washington, D.C. We spent 13 hours in the car. We drove through many states. The first thing we did when we got there was to go the National Air and Space Museum. We saw lots of airplanes and fighter jets. Then we left and went to the White House and Washington Monument. The next day we went to the Museum of American History. We didn't like that one as much. Then we went to the Natural History Museum. We saw dinosaur bones and fossils. It was so big we are going back another day. On Monday we went to George Washington's house. We saw his grave. Then we went to Arlington National Cementary and saw the eternal flame. That night we saw Abraham Lincoln's Memorial. We got to stand where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. gave his speech "I Have a Dream". Tuesday we to Thomas Jefferson's house. Wednesday we went to the archives. We saw the real Declaration of Independence. Then we finished the other museums from earlier in the week. Thursday we went to Thomas Jefferson's Memorial, the World War II Memorial, the Library of Congress, and finally the wax museum. How awesome! It was our last day of the trip. Finally it was time to drive back to Florida! I had a great time with Z.

April 7
Yawn. Good morning, this is Chelsey at 4:30 am! I cannot believe P. woke me up this early but I am excited because we are flying to Mexico today. Yeah!

We flew from Jacksonville to Houston, Texas and then to Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco Mexico! We drove from the airport to Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco to Punta Mita, Nayarit where we stayed at Aunt L. and Uncle J.'s house. We were welcomed by the family with strawberry smoothies and went straight to the pool. After dinner we watched the movie Bedtime Stories but I still wasn't tired.

April 8
This morning we slept in (anything past 4:30 is great)! After breakfast we took a trip into Punta Mita to go on a boat excursion. The boats took us on a trip to, what we will call, the "Bird Islands". These islands, which were mainly rock, were full of caves and paths to explore once you swam over to the land. I understand the water in the Pacific Ocean is very cool! That is what P. told me because I chose not to swim. It was a great adventure.

When we returned from the boat, we took a rest while we waited for dinner. We had no idea there was a Piñata Party planned until after dinner was served. The piñata was filled with assorted Mexican and American candies. After the piñata was destroyed we had chocolate cake and played hide and seek. We had so much fun.

April 9
Today we spent the day at the beach a short ride from the house. We had lunch and hung out! The highlight of the beach trip was the discovery of the hermit crabs in all sizes. That was amazing!

April 10
We ventured out to Sayulita, a beach town just a short distance from Punta Mita. The streets and beach were packed because of Easter weekend. In Mexico, people camp on the beach and everywhere else as far as I could tell in celebration of the holiday. We shopped in the market and watched while some of the locals worked on crafts. It was very interesting.

April 11
Today was a short day in Mexico. P. and I went to the pool after breakfast and visited her cousins. I had time to reflect and rest on the plane trip back from Puerto Vallarta, through Houston and finally back to Jacksonville. What a lovely trip.