09 August 2012

August Time Out

Dear friends,

I am going to be Europeanish and take a brief holiday.  I'll be enjoying a Celtic music festival, canning tomatoes and a variety of fruit jams, and working on my graphic novel project.

Best wishes - See you after Labor Day (a U.S. holiday on 3 Sept this year).

06 August 2012

SENT OUT: First Class Hotel

Addendum to this post, which was prescheduled:
The Mars Curiosity Rover landed successfully some 9+ hours ago. 
Here's NASA's animated video that shows what had to happen for it to work . . . . it did!


I found this postcard in an old moving box.  
Looks to be at least 40 years old, maybe more.  
Perfect for a letter game.

02 August 2012

The Awesome Board Game - Part 1

My nephews and I have a lot of fun with our projects.
Two years ago they learned all about manual typewriters.

We called ourselves The Three Planeteers.

The past two Summers they planned, cooked, and hosted two multi-course dinners for their family.
For this project we named ourselves The Three Cooketeers!

This Summer we have a new project and are calling ourselves The Three Amazing Gamesters!  Our project -- The Amazing Board Game -- was inspired by the above picture and story about a family who created a person-sized board game using carpet squares, paper, and canvas tape.  

We modified the supplies list, using cloth placemats we found at Goodwill in place of the carpet pieces (which were just too expensive).  It took awhile to collect them all (we needed 50!).  Finally, thanks to Aunt Cee, we had enough to start.

First, so we could get a sense of how the game was going to look, we laid out all the placemats in the boys' backyard.  It helped us get an idea of the flow of the game.

Then we decided which mats would have something painted on them - Start, Finish, directional arrows, instructions, and "C" for the Silly Card option. (The Silly Cards will have instructions for the player - stuff like "Stand on one leg and sing a song" and "Trade places with a player on another square" and "Do the Chicken Dance.")

Since we needed some solid floor space for the next step, we took the stack of to-be-painted mats inside, turned on the Olympics to provide some happy background sound, sat down on the floor, and proceeded to draw and cut the image stencils out of freezer paper.  Older Boy1 was a total whiz with the scissors and Boy2 used an X-acto knife.  At the end, Boy1 wanted to try the X-acto and finished up his stencils in good time.

And, because our projects are never complete without some proper goofing around, the boys made their usual funny faces for my camera!

Afterward we ironed the stencils onto the mats. Both boys took a turn.

Then -- the most fun part of the project -- spray painting the designs!  We went back outside, where the boys spread out newspapers to protect the grass.


Neither of the boys had used spray paints before, so they were pretty excited to see what it would be like.  (I was impressed that they decided on their own that they would use goggles and protective masks.)  After a few basic training rules on how to use the paint canisters, they were off and running.

After letting the paint dry a bit, they carefully removed the freezer paper stencils.  It was a lot of fun seeing all our work turn into a real game!

Two squares were special, though.  Boy1 had the idea that there should be two Vortex Squares.  Unlike all the others, landing on a Vortex Square will totally change that player's game!  How you ask?  Well, we're not sure yet.  We just know a Vortex Square is a really cool thing to have!  (We'll be getting together again soon to write up the text for all the Silly Cards and create the game rules.  I guess we'll find out then.)

After practicing on the newpaper, they simultaneously painted their vortex designs in one try.

More funny faces!

From start to finish, creating the board game squares took us only two and a half hours. We celebrated with a lunch of fancy sub sandwiches and cookies from Jimmy John's and watching Brit Bradley Wiggins win his gold medal for cycling.  A rather fun and fine day all around. 

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...