Archive for the ‘Just for fun’ Category

Cold weather…a Play Date…Making Resolutions

Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

resolutionsIt was bitter cold out, too cold to ice skate, or to go sledding, or even take a short walk. School was closed. So any “Can Do”who could catch a ride was welcome for a play date at Orrie’s house.

Grandpa John and Grandma Maureen had come by to help out with table games and serving snacks Willie asked, “Grandpa John why do adults make New Year’s Resolutions”? Before Grandpa John could answer, Annie asked,”What are resolutions anyway”?

Grandpa John stopped handing out fruit and sat down at the table with the “Can Dos”. All eyes were on him as he thought of the best way to explain what a resolution is.

He cleared his throat and began by saying, “Well, resolutions are kind of like promises to do things that you need or want to do. It’s about doing things that you need to do but may not having being doing such a good job about doing so far.

For instance, let’s take sharing. You know that sharing is usually the right thing to do, but it is hard to do. So, you might make a resolution, a promise to yourself or to someone else that you will be better at sharing.”

The “Can Dos” were all quiet for awhile, then Nellie asked,”Why do people make resolutions on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day”? Grandpa John smiled and answered. “That’s a very good question Nellie. The new year is seen as a new beginning, a time to begin again. A time to do things you want and need to do. So people promise themselves and their family to make changes in themselves and their lives.”

“Hmmm,” said Arthur J. “Maybe we should each make a resolution for the new year.” Hector shook his head. “Not me,” he said. “I like myself just the way I am. I don’t think I need to change a thing about me.”

Maria, his sister tossed her head and said, “Think again brother. There are a few things you need to change… like being late for school a lot and using my stuff without asking.” Hector turned red and answered, “Okay, I’ll stop taking your stuff without asking but I can’t make two resolutions, so I’ll have to wait on promising not to be late for school.” Everyone laughed.

Grandpa John said, “Let’s go around the table and each make a resolution. I’ll start. “I promise to help Grandma Maureen around the house more.” Grandma Maureen gave Grandpa John a big smile and said,”You heard that children. You are my witnesses, he promised to help me more.” The “Can Dos” all laughed.

Then it was their turns to make resolutions. Nellie promised to help Grandma Hattie with the housework. Orrie promised to turn off his computer each night the first time he was asked to do so. Willie promised to empty the trash without moaning and groaning about it. Kathy promised to share with her sister Annie more and fight less. Arthur J. promised to help his brother with his math homework when he was having a problem.

Did you make New Year’s resolutions? Are you going to make any resolutions? What do you promise to do?

A Halloween Happening

Thursday, October 24th, 2013

Halloween houseHalloween is always a big event on “Can Do” Street!

Just about everyone participates in Halloween, even adults who don’t have kids or grandkids because it is always so much fun.

The Halloween celebration starts at the recreation center, which is decorated both outside and inside to look like a haunted house. Everyone gathers around 2 PM. The “Can Do” kids carry and hang up their Halloween costumes in the storage room to be put on just before they go trick or treating.

They walk through a pumpkin patch and each “Can D0″ picks out a pumpkin to paint in the crafts class. There’s a hall of funny mirrors maze where the “Can Dos” walk through and see themselves as all different shapes and sizes.

Then the “Can Do” Kids take a tour of the haunted house, stopping  to look at the decorated rooms. If they want, they can paint a window pane on one of the windows of the house and the best window painter gets a prize.  Some of the “Can Dos”  make Halloween desserts that everyone can enjoy at supper  before going trick or treating. The seniors club members help the kids make and decorate:

  • popcorn balls
  • eyeball in mud pudding ( marshmallow with a dried cranberry stuck in the middle and sitting in a small bowl of instant chocolate pudding )
  • pumpkin bread
  • ghost and witch cookies

Just before supper some of the “Can Dos”, who have been taking square dancing lessons put on a show of what they have learned. Then the choral group, directed by Grandpa Dooley, the music instructor, sing Halloween songs and the audience sings along.

At dinner, in the recreation center cafeteria, the “Can Dos” eat with all their parents and friends and other adults.

Then it is time…time to have faces painted to match costumes…time to get into costumes. Then the big event…the ragamuffin parade, when all the kids parade around in their costumes, parents and grandparents take pictures and there are prizes for the best costumes.

Just when the “Can Dos ‘ think they can’t possibly have any more fun…it is time to trick or treat up and down “Can Do” Street and all the side streets!

Some of the adults leave to get back home in time to give out Halloween treats to the kids as they go from door to door.

Parents and grandparents walk with the children and stay with them as they go from house to house tick or treating. The “Can Dos” all mind their manners, saying thank you when they are handed a treat.

After they visit the last house, it is time to go home. Once home, each “Can Do” spills out his or her bag of  Halloween treats to see what treats the bag holds.

The moms and dads usually say, “You can eat one treat now, then it is off to bed. Tomorrow is soon enough to portion out your treats over the next few weeks, so you don’t get a stomach ache”.

And that is how Halloween happens on “Can Do” Street!

More Marbles + Cabolders!

Friday, August 30th, 2013

After the “Can Do” kids finished playing Marbles in the Box, Grandpa Dooley said, “OK, who’s ready to play my favorite marble game”?

Hector wasn’t so sure, since he didn’t do so well playing Marbles in the Box.” Come on Hector, said Willie. “Be a sport.” Arthur J chimed in saying, “Come on Hector we always play what you want to play. Now it’s your turn to play what we want to play.

Not wanting to be left out, Orrie said, “Hector, you don’t even know what the game is about. Maybe you will be better at this game than your were with the last game.”

Grandpa Dooley took out a really large marble; it was huge! “Does anyone know what this is called.”? The “Can Do” Kids shook their heads. “Well, continued Grandpa Dooley,  “back in the olden days, when I was young they were called caboulders, the most valuable of all the marbles, especially the ones that you could see through.

The name of the game we are going to play is Hit the Caboulder, and this is how it’s played:

marbles 1. Place a caboulder on one end of a long table, or on a flat surface on the floor

2. Stand or sit at the other end of the table, or kneel if on the ground

3. Flick the small marble with your thumb pressed against your pointer finger, or, with your pointer finger  against your thumb

4. There are no do-overs once you have flicked the marble and it is moving

5. If you miss the caboulder, you lose the marble you were shooting with

6. If you hit the caboulder but it doesn’t move, you get to keep the marble you were shooting with and go again

7. If you move the caboulder, your win 10 marbles

8. If you knock it off the table, or out of the playing area, when on the ground, you win the caboulder”!

Grandpa Dooley looked at all the eager faces and said, “Okay, what I want to know  is who is going to be the Marble Master and be in charge of the caboulder“?

The boys voted Orrie in as the Marble Master. This time when Grandpa Dooley suggested taking some practice shots, Hector was at the front of the line.

Hector didn’t win the caboulder, but he did win a few marbles!

Who won the Caboulder… no one yet; maybe next time.

Table-top Marbles on a Rainy Day

Sunday, August 25th, 2013

The “Can Do” Kids tumbled into Grandpa John’s house when he opened the front door. Hector shouted out, “We’re here to learn how to play marbles like you did in the olden days.”

Grandpa John smiled and said.” We are all set up for a game called Marbles in the Box. Follow me to the playroom. Orrie is already there.”

Orrie was sitting at a long table.  At the end of the table was a tissue box with a whole cut in the bottom. The side with the whole rested on the table.marbles

Grandpa Dooley was there to help out, He handed each of the “Can Dos” a small bag with 5 marbles.

“Now everybody take a seat while I explain the rules”,  said Grandpa John. “When I was a kid we played this game in a playground area that had a flat surface. Sometimes, when the weather was bad, we played it indoors on a long table, just like we are doing today.

The object of the game is to win  marbles. Whoever has the most marbles at the end of the game is the winner.

The rules are : 5 players can play at any one time; each player gets 5 marbles to play with. The 6th player is the Marble Master.

  1. The Marble Master begins the game with 60 marbles

  2. The Marble Master challenges a player to take a shot to win 3 marbles. If a player gets a marble in the hole in the box, and it stays there, he or she wins 3 marbles and gets to go again, until he or she doesn’t get a marble in the hole.

  3. If the player doesn’t get the marble in the box, he or she loses the marble to the Marble Master

  4. When a player runs out of marbles, he or she is out of the game.

  5. The game is over when:

  • All the players are out of marbles and the Marble Master wins

  • The Marble Master runs out of marbles and the player with the most marbles wins and becomes the next Marble Master

6. The only way you can get the marble into the hole is either by flicking it:

  • with your thumb pressed against your pointer finger
  • with your pointer finger  against your thumb
  • There are no do overs once you flick and release the marble

Now that you know the rules, let’s pick a Marble Master and play “Marbles in the Box.”  The group voted for Willie to be Marble Master.

Grandpa Dooley asked, “Who wants to practice flicking the marbles before playing”? Hector said, “I don’t need to practice. This game is easy” Everybody else took a few practice shots with Grandpa Dooley’s help. Hector should have taken some practice shots because he was the first player out of marbles!

Arthur J. won by having the most marbles when Willie, the Marble Master, ran out of marbles.

Ready to try this game at home? All you need is a box with a hole in it and marbles! Be sure to check out the marble game in the “Can Do” Club House.

Big Doings for the 4th of July

Tuesday, July 2nd, 2013

The “Can Do” Kids can’t wait for the 4th of July celebrations at the “Can Do” Street Community Center.

They love birthday parties and the 4th of July is  the biggest birthday party of all…our country’s birthday!

This year, there is so much more they could participate in for the 4th of July, now that they were a year older.

Weeks ago the “Can Dos” signed up for the various events at the Center. At the planning meeting,  they found out the big event on the 4th of July would be a short play about the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

4th of JulyEven though the original signers of the first Declaration of Independence were all men, the girls were given the opportunity to dress in male costumes, if they wanted to be in the play. Annie, Maria and Nellie signed up to be part of the play along with 10 boys to make up the needed 13 signers, one for each of the 13 colonies.

Kathy, Yundi, Hector and Eulyn signed up, as members of the “Can Do” Kids Chefs Club, to work with the senior’s club members to make red white and blue desserts to serve with the barbeque supper after the play.

Jay, Orrie, Mickey, Arthur J. Bobby, Wendy and Willie volunteered to be the chorus singing well-known patriotic songs to open and close the play.

After the barbeque, after the sunset, would come the fireworks. The “Can Dos” could watch the fireworks, they couldn’t participate in the fireworks. That’s a job for experienced adults, not kids. Kids could get hurt by fireworks.

4th of July  is going to be quite a day… NOW IF ONLY IT DOESN’T RAIN!