If you have young chess players in the house, you might want to check out one of the many chess tournaments held here in Oregon. Our experience with these tournaments has been very positive. There is a range of players welcomed, with particular attention to encouraging the youngest of players. Events are typically inexpensive (less than $20 to enter), offer the chance to play 4 or 5 similiar-aged opponents, and are a great way to pass a rainy, cold Saturday.
This past fall, my youngest son and I discovered another
little free library in Salem.
Just east of the intersection of Belmont and Winter -
the joy of reading awaits you.
To the community librarian we say:
"Thank you for sharing your love of books!
We borrowed a few, added a few, and will return again soon."
I've never been a fan of football. All the bumping into each other; the intentionally trying to knock each other down; the padding/helmet/gear that keeps me from easily reading the player's facial expressions; the screaming crowds and the (usually rainy weather): In the past, I have always said, "No thank you!"
But then.... I had this boy. This funny, smart, charming eight year-old that adores football. So, that means we now subscribe to Sports Illustrated (for Kids), and we watch Sunday football on TV, and I've learned the names of several teams - just so that I can follow some of the dinner conversation on the subject. It's as if my whole world has turned upside down.
Although I never, ever, in-a-million years, thought it would come to be -- my son plays on a football team and I LOVE watching his games! This is proof that nothing is as powerful as a mother's love. (Granted- we are talking about flag football... with a mouth guard... in a non-competitive league.. with a coach who strives to let each kid play each position - regardless of skill level). Amazingly, I have found harmony with football!
The season has now ended, but I want to give a shout-out to the Boys and Girls Club of Salem. Our family has participated for two years and we've been consistently impressed by this kid-centered athletic program. My boy is the shortest child in 3rd grade yet, on any given weekend, he has played quarterback, center, and running back (and all with a smile). Hooray for Coach! Hooray for Boone! Hooray for kids of Salem! I want to say thank you to the 'Boys and Girls Club' for letting kids be kids.. and..for giving this mom a chance to find the fun in football.
It was ALL LEGO® - ALL day for us this Saturday!
Here's a few snapshots of the fun activities:
Here's a few of the store's great offerings:
Now, we're home and our our LEGO day continues. I'm sleepily sipping a cup of hot cider (with my feet up) while the boys are busy building with their new bricks. With their new purchases, and the 'mini-set' prizes they received at KIDSFEST, I'm not sure when they'll be ready for bed. Our eight year old keep announcing, "This is such a fun day!"
Who ever imagined that such small bricks could bring such joy and contentment to so many?
Rushing from one event on a busy day, I needed to find a kid friendly place to feed my boys as we passed through downtown Salem. After ticking off all the possibilities in my head, I realized how the term "kid-friendly" dramatically changes as your children grow. Our stop:
While the high, backless stools might be a danger zone for toddlers; the quick service, yummy pizza and newspapers hanging on the wall were a huge hit with my boys. Good eaters and good readers! As long as the pizza, comics, and sports sections kept coming - they were as happy as could be!
Ticket winners will receive two, free admission passes for the Saturday, October 12th, 9am to 1:30pm session.
LEGO KidsFest includes:
To enter the drawing for these two passes--
just leave a comment to this post.
If you’d like additional chances: You can mention this giveaway on your own blog (please provide the link to your post with your comment) or spread the word to your friends and family (as I’ll give you additional chances anytime anyone mentions your name in their own post. Ie..“Jennifer K. told me about this giveaway!”).
The drawing will be held Wednesday, Sept. 18th.
Feel free to email me with questions!
Two family fun activities are happening this weekend.
#1: Couch Racing at Bush Pasture Park
Cheer on your favorite local team as they hurl themselves (and their former living room furniture) down the soap box derby hill on Saturday, Sept. 7th. The fun begins at “high noon.” Food and drink for sale. Bring your friends. Stay 10 feet back from the track. Enjoy the show!
#2: Sunday Streets Open for Bikes
A two-mile route (closed to motor vehicles) between Wallace Marine Park, Riverfront Park, and the Capitol Mall is the perfect spot for a family bike ride this Sunday, Sept. 8th. Activities and vendors available along the route. This is Salem’s bite-sized version of Portland Parkways. Grab your helmet and support active transportation here in the state capital.
Anyone who knows my boys, knows that LEGO® bricks are hugely popular at our house. They say that children around the world spend
5 billion hours a year playing with LEGO® bricks, and based on how my boys love to build and rebuild their original creations, I'm not surprised. LEGO is a central part of my son's childhood. As a family, we've had the good fortune of visiting several LEGO related places. (Three cheers for LEGOLAND Billund; applause for LEGOLAND Discovery Center Chicago; hoots and hollers for FIRST LEGO League!) Lucky us: Now, I hear that LEGO KidsFest is coming to Oregon!
Here's the official press release for those interested. There are 5 sessions available (4.5 hours in length and each featuring the same exhibits and activities). Tickets are $19 for kids and $21 for adults. All the official information can be found at: www.LEGOKidsFest.com
With 915 million ways to combine six eight-stud LEGO® bricks, this is the perfect opportunity for Oregon boys and girls to continue the fun. Check back here in a few days for more info. and the possibility of FREE tickets for one lucky family!
While you are at the Museum, be sure to visit the Discovery Center on the 3rd floor. There are books, exhibits, costumes, art supplies, and furniture all designed with young museum visitors in mind.
After walking through almost all of the exhibits, my boys were ready for action. My youngest loves a good mummy fact. My oldest, began a portrait of a "young Roman guard" for the wall. I tried my hand at tin-foil sculpture.
On the Go