Camp Nana

Ginny is making her way to Portland to visit her childhood friends and family, so Camp Nana was done one person. And her smiling face was missed.

Max and Abby began the day by making their own wind chimes. We used mini pie tins (thanks, Pat) from a family dinner dessert, as the top piece. Holes were poked in the tin and in the center… a cute old bell. Hollow little tubes were added and various accouterments such as old keys and some moon charms until the chimes were just right in sound and sight.

Unfortunately, I did not think to snap a photo while we were working on them, Kerri did get a couple photo of the chimes which found a new home from the eave of their patio cover.

We barely had time to run a couple of rehearsals for our end of summer program (cloaked in secrecy as always) until the kids had to leave for karate. But, before our time was up, we managed to conjure up a very tasty lemon supreme cake topped with the family favorite French white icing for Max and Abby to contribute to their dinner time.

Camp Nana 2019 Ready, Set, GO!

The three campers (known as Nana’s Camp Squad) all have many summer activities this year.  We are squeezing in mini-camp sessions as we navigate through swimming, gymnastics, dance, karate and summer travel.  And today was our kick-off with a morning movie of HOP at our new favorite Galaxy Luxury Theater on the far east side of town.

EB’s destiny was to take over the role of the Easter Bunny, as had been his father’s and his father’s before him.  But his heart was set on becoming a drummer instead. And I have to admit, he was darned good at it!  In fact, the most enjoyable parts of this movie for me, were the drumming scenes.  Image result for hop the movie EB drumming with the blind singers

The campers were invited to bring their own bunnies along to enjoy the movie with us.  Ginny and Abby stuck their bunny’s butts in the cup holders and would every once in a while “feed” the bunnies a kernel of popcorn or a skittles candy.

(Max had his bunny, Chocolate,  in a “sleeping bag” while Abby’s bunny, Strawberry, and Ginny’s namesake bunny, Ginny, were more of the come as you are dress code.)  Once in a while, Ginny would lean over and give me a short explanation of why the mouse did this or the chick did that.  It made for a very sweet and enjoyable morning.

Ginny was off to gymnastics with mommy and baby brother, so Max and Abby and I headed over to McDonalds to get some energy expended and a few calories under our belts. 

The Pima County Public Libraries are all giving away one free book to any teen or child stopping by this week, to encourage summer reading.  Max and Abby need no encouragement as they have their noses in a book often; but hey, who doesn’t love a free book?  They perused the books and made their choices and began reading their new material while walking out of the library door.  I had to remind them that reading while walking could be dangerous!  They took a minute to strike a library pose before departing the area.

Home for some quiet time and a game of Uno Attack while I gear up for a fun project on another Camp Nana day!

 

Week 4 Camp Nana 2018

Today we learned all about Ladybugs.  Who knew they came in other colors besides red?  Some are yellow and others are orange.   The more common Ladybug is red with 7 black dots.  There is even an orange one with white stripes and another orange with white dots!

Did you know that a ladybug lives 2-3 years AND they actually play dead to protect themselves from predators.

After making garden ladybugs out of rocks.  We left them to dry before Nana sprayed them with an outdoor clear sealant.  Now there are three yards with cute little garden critters.

Then we played a game using the letters from LADYBUG,  All three of them came up with answers (sometimes with a bit of help) to:

L – If I were a Ladybug, my favorite place to play would be … (MAX – Lake Kalabonga; ABBY – Lily pad; Ginny – Lawn)

A – My name would be … (Alexander; Abby Jr; Abby)

D – My favorite food would be … (Durrito chips; Daffodil; Daisy)

 

Y – I would make a friend named … (Yelda Jr; Ybbythd; Yoo Hoo)

B – My friend and I would play … (mini-Basketball;  Bug and Seek;  Baseball)

U – I would hide under this to keep me from the rain … (Umbrella aka mini-leaf; Umbrella; Umbrella)

G – I would travel to … (ground; Grand Canyon; Grandpa’s)

It was such a messy fun day!  Who doesn’t love a cute Lady Bug?

I will trade Pikachu for your Archen …

I noticed a growing phenomenon a couple of years ago when Max joined the Indian Ridge Swim Team.

It seemed that practices and meets were not just about swimming;  and not just about winning. There is a camaraderie among Pokemon collectors who gather at these pools;  so much so that every practice is dotted with Pokemon cards laying on beach towels;  on the concrete and on tables under the ramada.   Everywhere you look –  Pokemon.

I find headlines like

  • Pokemon obsession leads to bans at schools
  • Pokemon expelled
  • Pokemon Craze Challenges Docs | Psychology Today

Oh, my goodness.

I thought it only my duty as a Nana to delve deeper into the details of these strange beings called Pokemon.  So, I listen – and pay attention to the games and the most important activity – trading.  The wheeling and dealing that  goes on is hypnotizing.   These children who couldn’t tell you where they left their socks  that they literally had just taken off  –  have memorized every name of the 807 characters  and what their powers are and any other statistic, for when they need to discuss.  The young traders rattle off names such as Empoleon and Phantump  and Zygarde like they are speaking if John or Sally.

I was told today by a young man to “alert” him to any of the cards that had these numbers; these codes in the right hand corner,  in red.  I asked him to explain the importance of the red writing versus the black writing.   Turns out, there isn’t any significant difference in value (according to him).  He just really, really likes the color red.

It is interesting to watch young swimmer/collectors file in through the gate with a handful of cards with dog-eared edges from the wear, pouring out of their pockets. Some kids walk in with small containers of cards and then there’s Max,  who has a ginormous 4 inch binder weighing in at 5 pounds or so.  On more than a couple of occasions, I hear Abigail informing other children that her brother, Maxwell, is a “master collector” to which the reply is always an enthusiastic “I KNOW!”  Seems like he is building his own brand.  Hmm.

There is something else that I have learned.  There is an unspoken, quiet honor among young Pokemon Traders and Collectors.   Books are left open and unattended as the kids are called to their practice or event.  Kids waiting for their practice sit atop one of the tables, turning the plastic pages one by one and commenting on this or that feature of the Pokemon character, sometimes removing the card from the sleeve to look at it more closely, and always placing it back in its rightful sleeve among the other treasures, bestowing the dignity of which it is apparently deserved.  A white-gloved formally dressed Marine could not have done better.

I have not personally witnessed any violence over the game – only some tearful irritation from Ginny stating that she used to have three Pokemon but Abby took one and hid it and now she only has two – dotted by a few sniffles between words.  I believe I curbed any violence by ordering Abby to give Ginny the card in question.  Fanaticism?  Not really.  Make no mistake, there is an enthusiasm among these youthful swimmers.  But when coach Jenny sounds her signature whistle (not from plastic – just from Jenny), the cards are dropped, collector notebooks left open and the kids are off to swim.  I think it is healthy and it amuses me to watch the carefully thought out transactions.
I mean, if they can spout off the names and powers of hundreds of Pokemon, they certainly should have no trouble learning the scientific names for minerals in a few years.  Am I right?