Friday, January 3, 2020

Random Tid Bits

  1. On the last week of classes, I felt so bad for Mica. He had his Science Fair presentations. He had to give 3. The last presenter put his form in another student's spot. They are listed by number, and I guess the last digit was covered up. He had to present his project to yet another person. Thankfully this kid just rolls with the flow.

    The year earlier he was told to leave his stuff in his class, or wherever - do not bring it to his Science Fair Presentations. He left his stack of books, and stuff in the cafeteria, for that last presentation he shouldn't of had to do. Then he went back up to get his stuff, only to find it was all gone! He went to the lost and found, asked the cafeteria person if they knew who took it, and asked the office. It wasn't in any of those places. I told him, they may have turned his books into the school library. Nope! Thankfully he found his stuff the next day. A staff member turned it into the office. Talk about a heart stopper! If that would have happened to Isaak, he would have lost it.

    Then Mica checked his grades. He has B's in 2 or 3 classes, when he should based on his assignments have A's. His homeroom teacher thinks it's a computer glitch. She emailed his teachers. Mica's like, "Well B's are good." BUT he earned A's! We still don't know if this was fixed. 

  2. We've been rewatching Orphan Black. We all love the show. I never realized it's rated M, and the first time we watched it Isaak was probably 8 or 9. Now he's 11. Dang Tatiana Maslany is a great actress! Underrated, for sure. I think we counted, and she plays around 12 or 13 different roles: Beth (cop), Sarah (punk), Katja (French Girl), Alison (Soccer Mom), Cosima (Science Geek), Helena (Ukrainian Messed Up One), Rachel (Stuck Up), Krystal (Prissy), M.K. (Introvert Artist), Tony (Trans), and others on videos like (Jennifer and Camilla) they don't always name. You can tell when one is trying to be the other. How does she do that?

  3. Every year, for the past few years I have the boys write for this:

    They've never won, but it's still good to make them write. Isaak seems more about it than Mica. Mica's more the reader. Isaak's choosing to write about the Soccer Mom Alison from Orphan Black. It was from a book. Who knows if it's ok - being an M rated show. 

  4. The boys were a bit ticked off at me, for not having a Dance Party for New Years Eve. They apparently like that. I just wanted a chill holiday. PLUS Nebraska is rated the highest for Influenza A. Not that I think we should build a bubble, for our family, but I don't really want sickness drug in. Isaak's "friends" wanted to know if he was having a party. He told them, "No". Then they proceeded to say they'd hang out together, but never invited him. What did the want? Our food? Thank Gawd he has other friends at school! One is our carpool, and takes Isaak to school a lot!

    What did you do, for New Years Eve?

  5. At this point I'm tired of food, and we had a Pot Luck, for work on Thursday.

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

WW: What Have We Done? {Linky}

On Amazon Prime Days they had a Playstation 4 on a great sale. It came with a game, and a digital code for another game. I got it, and saved it for the boy's Santa gift.

Fast forward to Christmas:

The boys got it, and hugged us. Mica said, "I didn't think you'd ever buy us something like that." Truth - They've never had a game console.

Mica set it all up.

When he got to the digital code, well I had to look into that. I didn't even know Amazon had a spot for digital codes.

Then my brother-in-law made a comment, "I wish PS4 was just like PS3 - FREE." I had no idea what he was talking about. Don't you just get the games, and play them?

I took a Mica to a Game Stop. I won a $20 GC. They had buy 2 preowned games, get 2 free. I'm like, "Ok". We got to the counter. The guy working said, "You do understand that these are multiplayer games. You'll need subscription to play them to get their full features." Me, "I guess we'll get that."

Later my Brother-in-Law told Mica he would need en ethernet cord to make things upload faster. We got that too.

Let's just say, I'm not a gamer, and had no idea what I was getting into.

Here's the boys playing Playstation 4 with their cousins.

They sure do talk to the TV A LOT! The guy at the bank said, "Good job with holding out, for so long." 

I got an off brand 2nd controller, for them to use and for me to review. It's a company that takes forever to get things out. At least I don't have to pay for yet another thing. LOL!

Are you a gamer? I most certainly am not. 

Monday, December 30, 2019

I Hope You Christmas!

Christmas Eve morning rolled around, and we were all still in Christmas Festivities madness.

My sister Terra was getting over Influenza A. My nephew Emerson and Brother-in-law both just got Influenza. Mica was going to bed at 7:30, for a few nights because he didn't feel good. Isaak was feeling better, but had Strep Throat earlier in the week and the week before.

We decided Emerson would stay home with his Dad. Otherwise we were good. I many times questioned if Mica had Isaak's Strep Throat, or an ear infection, but he remained fever free through all of it, so he went to have Christmas Eve with everyone.

Here's the best photo I could get of us. Mica's lips were like that in just about every shot. The ceiling is going to have a light up there. That's where the chimney flue went from our fireplace that we sold. For now it looks like a graduation hat on Mica's head. Am I right?

We went to church. It's something we only do about once a year. Sorry, but I'm truthful, plus there's a story there. My older sister dropped the bomb that they don't want to do the church thing anymore. I want to mention that we are faithful; we just don't go to church. Before the service I texted to my older sister to pick up hand sanitizer because my Aunt was asking for it. She texted, "See that's why I stayed back to get things ready, and get things like that. ;)" I texted and said, "Well I thought about it, but decided since I'm a few years younger than you I need to put a few more years in to going." I was surprised that Isaak participated in the youth sermon, and sang. 

After church we went back to my Mom and Dad's to have a huge meal of soups, shrimp, cheeses, sausages, dips, veggies, crackers, and more. 

That's when my Mom started looking really bad. Feverish! 

Everyone liked their gifts. We all loved the sweet treats a little too much!

Here's one photo of my youngest nephew walking around with the Spider-Man blanket we gave him. I gave him that, and a Paw Patrol video. For his birthday my sister said he loved PJ Masks. What did I get him for party plates? Paw Patrol. He'd never seen Paw Patrol. I said, "Well I'm getting him a Paw Patrol DVD, so he knows what it is."

I hardly get good photos of people unwrapping gifts, and spending time with each other. It's always dark when we have Christmas with my family, and dark when the boys open their gifts in the morning.

Here's a photo on Christmas Day of the boys with their cousin's the same ages as they are. My nephew Evan wanted a hoodie. It's hard to find one under $50! I just didn't want to pay that! I found one on Amazon for $28. Then my nephew Elijah wanted one. Then Mica saw me ordering it, so he wanted one. Isaak liked it too. Aunt Terra got my boys hoodies as well.

My boys hate me a little because I told my Mom to get them these sets instead of Legos:


They are very complicated. Everything is paper! They each fit their personalities. Isaak's into plants. Mica's into books. I'm sick of Legos. Travis said, "Well you can put them together, and give them to your grandparents." Isaak said, "No way am I going to put that much work into something to have them put that out probably once a year." Ha! 

They got a lot of things they LOVE from their grandparents. No worries. I will do the paper sets with them. It may take a year, but we will get them done.

Christmas morning I got up at 7. Isaak was on the love seat at 6! Just waiting... until we all got up. This is the first year he hasn't believed in Santa. I'm glad he was still excited for Christmas! He doesn't look excited in this photo. He was just sick of waiting for us!

There were a few gifts I was pretty darn excited about giving...

Mica's Spacex Long Sleeve Shirt:

BUT Mica decided to slice the box with a scissors, and sliced his shirt. We had to pick on him because in preschool he took his shirt, and cut it with a safety scissors right in the middle. This time he sliced right in between the A. I ordered a new one, thinking the sliced one could be a night shirt. But I did decide to try and sew it. I didn't do too bad, so I canceled my order. The best option would be fabric tape, but I'm not a sewer, so I didn't have any. 

I was oddly excited about these steam punk glasses I got last minute. Isaak loved trying some on at The Mall of America. I don't know how much he'll really wear them, but they look crazy, and fun.


I gave both boys Cheez-it Boxer Briefs, in Cheez-it Cracker boxes. The crackers remained closed, and I slid the boxers in there. It was just a fun way to give their gifts.

I loved Code Piano, I got for Isaak to review. 

Travis and I didn't get each other too much. We got our new phones. That was a lot! 

He did pick out a saw, and a tortilla press. I got a Pizza Peel last minute, to review. He ended up loving it, and made pizza right away. It kind of looks like a spanking paddle. Ha!

I got a few shirts I picked out, and a new kitchen mat. I know not that exciting, but I really wanted a new mat! Our old one was peeling. Plus this one is red. Why not add more color into my already colorful kitchen?


I also got a Kamboocha Starter Kit, from my Mom. I asked for it, but I'm slightly nervous trying it out. All I have to do is follow the instructions, but I'm horrible with instructions. Only I could mess up Amish Friendship Bread, that was passed down to me. I have to get past this fear of screwing things up.  

Both boys hugged us when they got their first game station, PlayStation 4. I have a lot to learn. Who knew it only came with one controller? Not me. I didn't know you have to pay extra to play online with other people. It's all new to me. I told that to the Game Stop guy, when Mica went to pick out a few games.

What were some of your favorite gifts you got or gave? 

Sunday, December 29, 2019

Code Piano Review - Teach Kids Coding, From @LetsStartCoding! #LetsStartCoding #Coding

This was the first year Isaak didn't believe in Santa. I should be thankful that he believed, for so long. He's in sixth grade, and I stopped believing in fourth grade. I wanted it to be a special Christmas for him. I kept reminding him that the spirit of Santa is still real. You can look up Saint Nicholas, and he was in fact a real, and giving person.

One of my favorite gifts that Isaak got, was Code Piano from Lets Start Coding
I was going to put it in his stocking, but decided I wanted to make it a bigger gift than that. I put it in a big box, filled with confetti, a note in there that he'd start actual Piano Lessons towards the end of January, and wrapped it. Code Piano is a perfect stocking stuffer size.

Learning how to play the piano has been therapy for Isaak. If he gets frustrated with his homework we tell him to go play his keyboard. It takes all frustrations away. It's the only thing I've found that works to calm him down, when he's really frustrated. I knew Code Piano would be up there on his list!

If you don't like to play the piano, that's ok. It's really mostly about coding. Lets Start Coding does have other sets!
  • Code Piano $44.99
  • Code Speaker $19.99
  • Code Rocket $44.99
  • Code Car $44.99
I have to admit I was apprehensive about Isaak starting to use Code Piano. I just kept thinking, What if we can't help him? The product was new to me as well. 

If there's one thing I disagree with, it's the age range 8-12. I think it's for ages 8 and up! It would be good, for a lot of adults to use.

Isaak kept saying, "I know how to code. Let's do this." So we did. The cards can seem like foreign language if you're not familiar with coding. They are helpful when you dive in to the project.

We read all the cards, and just decided to begin. They have everything you need to get started. It will work on my Macbook from work, but not my newer laptop I own. The newer one has no USB ports. There are adapters, but as is it won't work. 

Once it's plugged in, a download comes up, for the application. That was the one thing I wasn't sure where to put the coding in. It simply worked right after it was plugging it in.

From there are tips, videos, quizzes, and sample code to use.

If you code wrong, your code highlights in red. That way you know to fix it.

Isaak started out just like me, knowing what to do, but really knowing nothing. Ha! He got lots of code that was red, and not working. Thankfully they do have a refresh button.

We left him home alone, to do his thing. He called when we got a few blocks away. "Dad! I did something! Listen!" A few notes chimed in. He called a few more times after that. He was excited about his accomplishments!

I got home, and we did our video. He learned a lot in the few hours we were gone. He still needs to learn more. If he knew everything, Code Piano wouldn't be as fun. He'd have nothing to learn.

What I really loved, was that there was notes from Isaak all over my note page about the product. He said, "Mom I had to do some math to figure out some of the coding. You need math to code." I said, "Remember that when you tell me that you will never use math in the real world." 

I'd say Code Piano is a success! It's a toy, but also a learning device. 

Questions for you:

Do you know how to code well? Do you find it challenging? 

Out of all the sets they have, Which one would you choose: Code Piano, Code Rocket, Code Speaker, or Code Car?

Disclaimer: I got this product for free in exchange for an honest review. 


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