Category Archives: Fun

My Favorite Children’s Book Come True

One of my absolute favorite children’s books is From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. ¬†If ¬†you’re not familiar with the book, an essential part of the story involves two children who spend the night in a museum. ¬† The characters in the story are a sister and her younger brother, who were about the same age difference apart as my brother and myself, so the story greatly resonated with me. ¬†As I read this book I would fantasize about what it would be like to live in a museum – I was sure I could have a LOT of fun.

Well, the Museum of Science & Industry in Chicago is seeking to make this a dream come true for people like-minded as myself. ¬†If only I was free to do this – I’d certainly be willing to try. ¬†They are seeking someone to move-in to a special residence they’ve constructed and live at the Museum for a month – all the while capturing their experiences via blogging, videocasting, and social media means.

A blog post on shows this picture, as well as more pictures of the living space. More details about the experience, called Month at the Museum, are available on the MOSI site.

Here’s a video preview

Birthday Weekend

Oh my. I’m exhausted! In my last post I wrote that it was Jihad’s birthday. Well, Friday, July 9th was mine. Between Friday night and Saturday night we packed in enough fun for both of us.


Friday evening, we went to dinner at Kyoto Japanese Restaurant. We went there last year for Jihad’s birthday so it was a great place to go again. Who can not love the fact that you get fire in your face during dinner? ¬†I didn’t get any great pictures, but we had fun.

On Saturday we were busy just about all day.   We had a birthday party for Jihad at Chuck E. Cheese followed by a Nashville Rollergirls roller derby game.  It was the Music City All-Stars vs. the Tallahassee Rollergirls.

The Party
We’ve never hosted a party at Chuck E. Cheese before. ¬†While I expected the chaos, it was certainly a lot to bear – almost overwhelming! We had about 20 kids total and about 15 adults. ¬†It was crazy! But we had so much fun.

The cake we had for him was a Star Wars cake from Publix Рa marble cake with buttercream frosting Рgood stuff.   It had Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker on top battling it out.

We think the kids enjoyed themselves. We were there for more than 3 hours, and I’d not expected that. The schedule at Chuck E. Cheese is well-planned – we had a party hostess assigned to assist us all. ¬† Time passed very quickly. ¬†Here is a video of Jihad in the TicketBlaster. ¬†He won the largest prize there is to get in there too – a red ticket that gave him 200 free tickets.

After all was said and done, we packed it up and headed over to Municipal Auditorium for the roller derby game.

Roller Derby
This was our 2nd time attending a roller derby game. ¬†We went last year and enjoyed it a lot! So, we’ve been looking for an opportunity to go back. ¬†The Nashville Rollergirl teams are just cool. ¬†There is even a Nashville Junior Roller Derby. ¬†You have to be at least 10 years old to join, so if they’re still around when Kaleya comes of age – we’ll have to see if she has any interest.

Prior to sitting down, we ran into one of the players, Jersey Jackhammer.

Then, we sat down, and watched a great game. NRG won the game 159 to 70. I’m still learning how the game is played, but I have the basics down. Well enough to know when we were doing good and when we were not doing good enough. ¬†Here is a clip of a round or “jam” as it’s called. ¬†We see Rambo Sambo taking the “lead jammer” position. ¬†Then, she circles back around to catch up and ultimately break through the pack to score points for her team.

The kids seemed to enjoy themselves.  They asked questions about how the game was played and even Kaleya joined in with applause when she heard everyone else doing it because of a good score.   It was a great game Рduring one bout, Rambo Sambo scored 28 pts.  Another player that was fierce was Lady Fury. All the players were great though.

After the game we went down to the speedway to see if we could meet the players; and meet we did! Many of them were still on the floor and we liked how well they interacted with the crowd. We got a whole series of pictures of Kaleya w/ the players and one of the Jeerleaders:

Kaleya with Union-Jack-U-Up

Kaleya and Union-Jack-U-Up
Kaleya and Dramatic Pyrony
Kaleya and Showstopper
Kaleya and Rambo Sambo
Kaleya and Lady Fury
Kaleya and Anita PBR
Kaleya and Maulin Monroe

As we were leaving the auditorium, the entertaining band, Halfbrass, was outside performing impromptu.  Kids were dancing, some of the Jeerleaders were dancing, and the crowd was singing.  See the video below.

A great birthday weekend so far! We plan to go back to their next game on August 7th.  All in all, a great day and now I must go to bed!  However, before I go, here are some things to know

A Visit to the Park

Today, the kids and I took an excursion over to Percy Warner Park to just explore it and had a great afternoon.

We started by having lunch at a small play park near our house and stayed there for about 45 minutes.

Then I thought we should go explore Percy Warner Park. Even though I’ve been living in this neighborhood for over two years, I’d still never been over to it. ¬†So off we went and it was gorgeous!

There is a driving trail that goes up the mountain side that we drove up and when we reached what looked to be near the top, we stopped and parked.

We noticed there was a trail that led down the side of the hill and the kids wanted to see where it went.

You see that the trail goes downhill right?? When we reached the first steep decline, I was going to turn around, but Kaleya wasn’t having it. How shameful is it that a 5-year-old is my motivation to continue ūüôā Along the trail, there were several people walking and some passed us who had walking sticks. Of course Kaleya wanted to know what they were and why they had them. When I explained, she decided she needed her own set of walking sticks.

We were walking the trials for a couple of hours and it was fun! The hike back *up* the mountainside was not as fun, but it was good exercise. The kids weren’t fazed though – they seem to have boundless energy!

In looking at the park map this evening, I think we were on the Mossy Ridge Trail, described as a 4 1/2 mile trail that “winds up and down wooded hills and hollows & crosses several springs and open meadows.” ¬†Up and Down is right! ¬†We didn’t do all 4 miles though; I’m guessing we walked on the trail about a mile before turning around to come back. ¬†I’m going to sleep well tonight. ¬†We are planning to go back next weekend and explore a different part.

Notes & Neurons

I’ve been watching TED videos for the past hour and love this one from Bobby McFerrin. The video is from the World Science Festival and he’s demonstrating our mental connection w/ music. Cool stuff.

January 31: My Namesake

If you didn’t know, I was named after a cougar in an episode of the Six Million Dollar Man. ¬†Below is said cougar, Taneha and Lee Majors.

Thanks to my mommy for sending it to me!

UNC Students Go Crazy in the Library (Again)

Oh, this is great! Last¬† year, I posted a video of f lash mob at UNC’s (my alma mater) undergraduate library.¬† Well, the UNC students have gone and done it again!

This year, they had a rave at the main library on campus, Davis Library.¬† Classic! They know how to relieve stress from finals don’t they ūüôā