Mad Science (but not angry science)

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So Kidlet, my oldest, had a Mad Science birthday party this past weekend.

It was pretty freaking awesome. And I’m not just saying that because I’m a dork of the geekiest order. It was seriously awesome. We had all 22 kids sitting still and paying attention for an hour and a half. An hour and a half, you guys.


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So I sell Usborne Books now

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Yep, I sell Usborne Books.* As in, I’m now an independent consultant. Which means I sell through home parties and stuff. I signed up because I love books (haha, understatement) and I want my kids (and other people’s kids) to love books too. Because reading! And learning! And other things!

So, yes, I like talking about books. I like buying books. I like books, full stop.

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GoldieBlox and the Three Axles

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For Christmas, my daughters each got a GoldieBlox. These are the coolest toys, you guys (seriously). Basically, it’s a picture book (with a “girly” story), but it comes with a “non-girly” building/engineering component. (I put girly and non-girly in quotation marks because the whole point of this toy is to let girls know that building things is a perfectly fine past-time for girls.)

Hubby and I have never been the “oh you must only play with dolls” type; our daughters have a mix of toys, ranging from their play house to their dress up box to their toy cars to their water guns. Munchkin, my four year old, once used her toy cars as dolls (Lightning McQueen was sick, you see, and had to go see the doctor, which was this random car she’d dug up out of the toy box).

Anyway. When Hubby heard of the GoldieBlox, he sent me the link to the Kickstarter video with the message “WE MUST BUY THIS.” When I saw the video, I replied with, “YES, WE MUST!” (because I may or may not have wanted to play with it myself). (Yep, our messages were in all caps.) (Good thing the Kickstarter was successful and GoldieBlox was already in production.) (Too many brackets.)

There are currently two GoldieBlox stories out — GoldieBlox and the Spinning Machine (the original), and GoldieBlox and the Parade Float (the newest one). My kids got one each. And then we spent…well, a while playing with them. (Ha! Understatement. My girls LOVE these.)

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Calgary Stampede. With kids.

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So in my neck of the woods, it’s the Calgary Stampede. It’s almost the end of the Stampede, but it’s still Stampede.

I was very impressed with how fast the organizers had the grounds cleaned up and dried out — if you’ll remember, Stampede Park was under water a couple of weeks ago because of the floods in Calgary.

If you went there now, you’d be hard-pressed to believe that it had ever been underwater. Let alone only a couple of weeks ago. (Granted, the Saddledome isn’t quite fixed, so they cancelled the concert series. But still. What they did was impressive.)

Hubby and I took the kids to Stampede last week. We didn’t go last year, so we figured we’d go this year. It was our first time ever at Stampede (we’re not from Calgary; we’ve only lived here a little over a year.)

This is what I took away from my Stampede experience:

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Want a pet alien baby? There’s an app for that

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Remember Tamagotchi? That handheld, egg-shaped digital thing that acted like a pet? (Only one you couldn’t cuddle with and had no fur.) Well. Last week, I was browsing the Google Play store for reasons I can no longer remember (I think I might’ve been looking for Nemo’s Reef, actually), and I came across the Pou app. It’s a pet alien baby that you raise to adulthood.

So really, it pretty much works the same way as a Tamagotchi, only it’s on your phone. And unlike a Tamagotchi, it allows you to say the hilariously inappropriate phrase, “Hang on, I’m playing with my poo Pou.”

It’s worth downloading for that reason alone. Seriously.

Anyway. I downloaded it, told Hubby I was playing with Pou, and then introduced the kids to it. Who then walked around telling people that they wanted to play with poo Pou. Which, as you can imagine, led to some serious hilarity. (I mean, they’re three and four and a half years old. So when they tell people they play with Pou, people tend to think they’re playing with, well, poo. You know.)

Anyway, I put Pou on the tablet and let them raise their own pet alien baby. (And then they introduced their friends to the Pou app. Which led to even more hilarity. But that’s a story for a later time.)

We all like this game because we don’t need to spend our own money on it (a rare thing these days). The app includes mini-games, where you earn coins, which then allow you to do things like change Pou’s body color, change the wallpaper in the “rooms,” buy him food, buy him balls for the game room, buy him clothes, etc. etc.

And yeah, I changed Pou’s body color. Because seriously, when the game starts, he’s brown…and looks like a pile of poo with eyes. Not even kidding.

So anyway. I know you’re dying to see what this thing looks like (well, maybe not dying, but you know what I mean). So, here you go! Some screen caps for you:

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