Tag Archives: Batman

For The Love of Books

20 Apr

Every year we venture off to explore the multitude of books and literary culture at the Festival of Books, and we come home inspired by the stories of Jedis, Batman, Wonder Woman, Frozen Princesses, and regular toddlers and zoo animals out there to save the world.

It’s a great trip, but also a marathon of events for parents, which can definitely wear you out by noon. Everything that is fun for kids and has a massive crowd tends to wear me out. And if meltdowns happen the adventure proves to be even more challenging.

Every year I wish for no meltdowns and I come prepared with Go-Gurt … you know one for snack time and lunch, and plenty of Ritz crackers, sandwiches, granola bars, pretzels, cheese sticks, and juice boxes. But for some reason some inciting incident happens and it burns somebody out.

However I’m happy to report that this weekend was meltdown free!

Oh! For the love of books! Having a smooth day felt pretty great. I felt like a successful parent.

Here’s our adventure.

We scoped out the scene and the kids took the lead. They scouted for the children book tents and found them right away.

We scoped out the scene and the kids took the lead. They scouted for the children book tents and found them right away.

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As we walked passed a few tents we noticed the WriteBrain tents, where storytelling is born.

As we walked passed a few tents we noticed the WriteBrain tents, where storytelling is born.

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My son found his creative side.

My son found his creative side.

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After writing his story, he was called on to read his masterpiece. I loved the ending when the evil jellyfish drowned.

After writing his story, he was called on to read his masterpiece. I loved the ending when the evil jellyfish drowned. My daughter’s story involved a SuperGirl who saved the day from a bully who threw paper airplanes on the school bus.

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Then we headed off to the dreamer section where my kids decided to write down their favorite travel destination, my daughter chose the moon.

Then we headed off to the dreamer section where my kids decided to write down their favorite travel destination, my daughter chose the moon.

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We then headed to the main event, where Batman read Skyscraper Showdown.

We then headed to the main event, where Batman read Skyscraper Showdown.

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At the end he was able to meet the author and gave me his best Justice League pose.

At the end he was able to meet the author and practice his best Justice League pose for the picture.

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While waiting for the next reading, we were treated to some awesome Ballet Folklorico dance moves.

While waiting for the next reading, we were treated to some awesome Ballet Folklorico dance moves. I was inspired to let me inner La Chona out.

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After all the Batman action and dancing, we raced back to the children's area to see if we could still catch the person responsible for one of my son's favorite series...Captain Underpants. It was the longest line ever, but it was worth the wait as Dav Pilkey signed and created a sketch in his book.

After all the Batman action and dancing, we raced back to the children’s area to see if we could still catch the person responsible for one of my son’s favorite series…Captain Underpants. It was the longest line ever, but it was worth the wait as Dav Pilkey signed and created a sketch for my son’s book.

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At the end of the day we picked up some free swag and I've got to say out of all the highlights of the day, getting a bag with this written on it was great. I was reminded to be better.

At the end of the day we bought some exciting books and picked up some free swag, and I’ve got to say out of all the highlights of the day, getting a bag with this written on it was high on the list. I was reminded to be better. Hanging out with books all day will do that to you.

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Sandbox Adventure List 30: The Batcave and Peanut Allergies

29 Sep

Dude … I can’t even.

The fact that I had enough energy to venture off to a Sandbox List Adventure Saturday morning amazes me.

This volunteering business is exhausting, so much so that I didn’t have the energy to log on to write or read anything after Taco Tuesday last week.

Volunteering … I get it … Get involved in your kids lives and be a part of the educational experience. It only happens once right?

Right.

Yeah … But going to seven stores in two hours, I think I deserve a medal or a chocolate trophy. Could it even be possible to go to seven stores in two hours?

Yeah.

It is.

And who or what do I blame for this journey?

Peanut allergies.

Dude I get that some kids can smell a peanut within a five-mile radius and that Epipen needs to come out. But here’s the thing … there are no kids with peanut allergies at my daughter’s school but they still use sunflower seed butter for snack time.

Are you aware that none of the major groceries stores within a 10-block of the school carry this sunflower butter?

No. No they don’t.

So after my trips to IKEA, Costco, Smart & Final Wholesale, VONS, Ralph’s, and Target for various errands I finally made it to Trader Joe’s Grocery Store.

I bought five jars.

There’s no point in going through that again. I might not make it to the weekend if I have to go through another shopping marathon. I’m one of the few females on Earth that hates shopping. It’s just not for me and I find it amusing that I was volunteered for this task.

But I survived and made it to weekend.

I made it just in time to visit the secret headquarters of the caped crusader … The Batcave.

And my son was thankful.

 

This adventure was inspired by the original 1960s  television series ... something we watch every Saturday courtesy of TV Land.

This adventure was inspired by the original 1960s television series … something we watch every Saturday courtesy of TV Land.

 

When I realized that the hiking trail to the Batcave was in Southern California, you know the Guats had to make a trip. My son has always been a fan.

When I realized that the hiking trail to the Batcave was in Southern California, you know the Guats had to make a trip. My son has always been a fan.

 

The beginning.

So the hike to the Batcave began.

 

We made it to the top and my son decided to get into Superhero mode, with his mask. His sister joined in by turning into the Flash. We headed in to explore.

We made it to the top and my son decided to get into Superhero mode, with his mask. His sister joined in by turning into the Flash. We headed in to explore.

 

We made it! High fives all around ... but then a look of concern on his face. Where's the Batcomputer? Dude.

We made it! High fives all around … but then there was a look of concern on his face. Where’s the Batcomputer? Dude. He so wanted to see it, but I had to explain that superheroes put that away because not all visitors are awesome like us … some steal stuff. So despite not being able to play with the Batcomputer it was still a good adventure for the kids.

 

Sanbox List Adventure 29: Meeting Your Hero

14 Apr

We have 13 of them.

Over the past year we’ve collected 13 of them. We started with three and now we have 13. I’m sure the count is gonna keep on rising. Apparently the Cape Crusader is the best superhero on Earth, even though he doesn’t actually have superhero powers, he’s super skilled in martial arts and has all kinds of gadgets to assist his crime fighting capabilities.

So it was of the utmost important that we didn’t miss meeting him.

At last year’s Festival of Books, we witnessed the awesomeness of The Justice League read one of their adventures on stage, but failed to meet them in person, which did not go over well with the kids. Luckily I was able to distract them with snacks, samples, superhero books, Captain Underpants, Scooby-Doo, and other scavenger hunt prizes.

I was packing light this year, and didn’t think sandwiches, Cutie oranges, cheese sticks, and graham crackers would cut it. So I was determined to weave my way in and out of the overheated masses and their cranky parents to reach the Meet-and-Greet line. I was on a mission to make the introduction. I was on a mission to make a Sandbox List Adventure come true.

So I was a little worried when a guy wearing a batman t-shirt and cap came on stage to read Skyscraper Showdown. I didn’t see Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, The Flash, or Batman. Don’t get me wrong the guy was quite animated and very into the story, but he had nothing on the Cape Crusader.

I began to worry as my son asked me for the third time where Batman was and my daughter was wondering when Flash or Wonder Woman were going to show up … but then just as the Joker was about to escape … he showed up and the crowd went wild. Apparently it was one of the best readings we attended. And even though Batman was the only superhero there, my daughter followed her brother’s lead and enjoyed the book.

But the magic of reading didn’t stop there.

We spent the rest of the day exploring the books, going on adventures that can only happen with literary magic, listening to music, and meeting all kinds of authors. It was one of the best Sandbox List Adventures this year. I know that because they’re still talking about it.

 

We got there early and saddled-up for an awesome adventure.

We got there early and saddled-up for an awesome adventure.

 

One of our first stops was the checking out the featured band ... that woke everybody up with their awesome jams.

One of our first stops was checking out the featured band … they woke everybody up with their awesome jams.

 

We followed that up by adding our names and favorite books to the wall of inspiration. My son of course chose Batman :)

We followed that up by adding our names and some of our favorite books to the wall of inspiration. My son of course chose Batman 🙂 My daughter chose The Very Hungry Caterpillar book. I decided to add The Alchemist, Eat Pray Love, and The Life of Pi.

 

We managed to play a few games before we went to the main event.

We managed to play a few games before we went to the main event.

 

Then we headed to the children's stage to check out our main event.

Then we headed to the Children’s Stage to check out our main event. We got front seats and enjoyed the reading of Skyscraper Showdown.

 

This is when all the kids went crazy ...

However the crowd went wild when this guy showed up …

 

However this is when my son was starstruck. He could barely contain himself. He was so excited to meet his hero and have Batman sign his book. It was his cartwheel-worthy moment of the week.

My son was starstruck. He could barely contain himself. He was so excited to meet his hero and have Batman sign his book. It was his cartwheel-worthy moment of the week.

 

When the awesomeness of the Cape Crusader was done, we explored the rest of the festival and discovered new authors.

When the awesomeness of the Cape Crusader was done, we explored the rest of the festival and discovered new authors.

 

During our exploration this was one of the funnest books and booths we discovered. My daughter did her best surfer pose and joined the characters ofthe book.

During our exploration this was one of the funnest books and booths we discovered. My daughter did her best surfer pose and joined the characters of the book.

 

During our browsing session, I found this book that caught my eye. The fact that Diego Luna read it aloud intrigued me.

During our browsing session, I found this book that caught my eye. The fact that Diego Luna read it aloud intrigued me.

 

After we picked up all of our books, from new and established authors, we headed home with all kinds of inspiration and new ideas.

After we picked up all of our books, from new and established authors, we headed home with all kinds of inspiration and new ideas.