Saturday, March 7, 2015

The Nostalgia of Cars

I remember when... I kept saying that as we walked through the field of cars yesterday at Midnight at the Oasis. This is an annual car show and festival that brings back memories for many people. I kept looking for a '57 Buick station wagon, just like my parents had when I was young. Despite all my steps I couldn't find one there. However, I did take a few photos and did tell my youngest son a few stories about cars that I did remember from my childhood. I do think we all have at least one story about a car we remember. What about you? What cars do you remember from your childhood? Do you have a story about a car?

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Viking culture

Two of my sons love to learn about the ancient Viking culture. They have sewn their own tunics and created other accessories to use. This interest started when my oldest son was about 7 years old and has continued for almost 20 years. When my son was in grade school in Sweden, I helped organize a field trip to a Viking village for his school class. I got to be in charge of the Viking village for that day, after spending a day with the archaeologist in charge and serving as her apprentice. The kids were having a great time, learning all the skills of the period. Then I went in the dug out open-sided blacksmith building to teach them to cast pewter. We had a small Tor's hammer necklace to use in the sand to make our mold. I thought I was ready and knew how to do this. What I hadn't counted on was the arm strength needed to keep the bellows going and the lack of persistence from a small group of 3rd graders. They didn't get the fire hot enough or keep the fire going so we could melt the pewter. And I was not strong enough to do it either. My son was so disappointed in me at the end of the day and only focused on the one skill in which I had failed at the Viking village. He swore that he'd just have to go home and learn to cast with pewter himself. It took him years of experimenting, and a few painful burns, but he did succeed in learning to work with pewter. Now he appreciates his hard-earned skill and knows that if I hadn't failed that day, he wouldn't have been so determined to teach himself.

Just so you get to feel as if you are at the Viking village with us, here are a few photos from other visits to Viking villages to set the stage.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Can you make up a story?

Here is a challenge for you, to make up a story to match the facial expressions I exhibit in these photos.