Tag Archives: Mom Camp 2014

Mom Camp Day 10: On to Room 41!!!!!

This day was ALL over the map!

I’ve been to London several times and never made it to the changing of the guards. The idea of fighting through the crowds to see it simply does not appeal to me! Still, it is so quintessentially British how could I deny the kids the opportunity? Well, I did deny them!

2014 06 03_England 2014_0963But, I discovered that there is a less well attended ceremony at The Horse Guard. Cinco also wanted to check out the Horse Guard Museum so I figured I could kill two birds with on stone!

2014 06 03_England 2014_0965Sadly, it was one of our less than fantastic weather days and we suffered through a rainy start. We saw it pretty close up. But, I think the horses were a little startling for Cinco.

He did love the Museum!  They have a great exhibit where you try on the uniforms of the Horse Guards.  We all took a turn.  Cinco forgot to take off his own shoes before trying on the boots.  He promptly got his foot stuck in the huge boot.  Poor Queen Gram tried like H-E-L-L to pull the boot off.  Then, I got in the act trying to help get the boy out.  He started to cry maybe out of fear and maybe out of pain.  Queen Gram started to panic and actually thought we might need to call someone from the museum to CUT him out of the boot.  OMG!  Thankfully at the last minute Cinco was freed from the boot!   Still both he and The Princess were adorable in the outfits.

Booky Mom at the Horse Guards!

Booky Mom at the Horse Guards!

Our next stop was Buckingham Palace by way of St. James Park.  Being a pair of desert rats, the kids loved the chance to stroll through along the pond in the rain.  We spent quite a lot of time with the birds in the park.  (For those you who recall my trip to Belize sans kids with The Captain, we did some bird watching.  And, spent a lot of time making fun of the serious “birders”.  But, I am kinda getting into seeing different types of birds—  does this mean I am getting old?) We also enjoyed some hot chocolates and a huge cookie at the park!

Then we took the typical pictures at the Palace.  It’s another place I have never toured.  I’ve seen if before.  But, I’ve never to London when it was actually open!

You may recall the kids were having a tough time finding food they liked in London.  So we made a stop by Hard Rock Café.  It is the original Hard Rock and was started by two American’s who couldn’t find good food in England!  Perfect for the kids, right?

Next it was off to The British Museum.

We have a great time there.  Cinco loved seeing the remains from Xanthos.  I also enjoyed that because I have been to Xanthos in Turkey!  The ancient city is interesting to see, but everywhere you go there are explanations that all the statues are at the British Museum.

Cinco’s favorite part were the Lewis Chessmen.  He desperately wanted a small replica chess set for sale in the gift shop.  He had spending money from Queen Gram.  But, he had already spent some of it and didn’t have enough for the set.  We planed to go back to the museum when The Captain arrived.  So, I told Cinco if could resist the impulse to spend his money until we returned to the museum, I would make up the difference…

SuttonHooI also very much wanted to look at the Sutton Hoo findings…ON TO ROOM 41.  Cinco and I were in heaven–  Geeks of a Feather!

Queen Gram and The Princess were not excited with The British Museum and kept staring at us from the side line….


Filed under Mom Camp 2013

Mom Camp Day 2: Operation Dynamo

One of the places we plan to visit on the trip is Dover Castle. Of course, it was built by King Henry II and the inside of the castle is restored to his time period—so it looks like it would have when William Marshal was alive:
Shameless Plug for my Book Again: See more here.


But, Dover is also where the British came when they were fleeing Dunkirk during the fall of France in WWII. To educate the kids on this, I found an amazing book called The Little Ships by Louise Borden. The story is from the point of view of a girl who goes with her father to help rescue soldiers from Dunkirk. It is well told and appeals to children because of the main character. The author also provides a good afterword on the history of the experience.

I find the evacuation to be one of the most compelling stories of WWII and British resolve. I know many people look to the Battle of Britain. And, that is an amazing story of fortitude as well. But, for me Dunkirk is fantastic because it is a moment when people have to come together and help each other make the best of a bad situation. It also teaches the lesson to fight on, even when you think you have lost because you never know what happen. This is a theme in my King Alfred book as well. (Shameless Plug)

After reading the book, we made our own WWII tanks.  We started with some very simple items: 20140530-090312.jpg

  •  A used Keurig coffee pod
  • A Q-Tip
  • A small pencil
  • Camouflage tape from the dollar store
  • Black Duck Tape
  • A used berry container
  • Scissors
  • Little Green Army Men (Optional)

20140530-090341.jpgStep 1:  Clean out the coffee pod and cut in half.  Keep the bottom portion and throw away the top ring.  Cover the cut-down pod in camo tape.

20140530-090333.jpgStep 2: Clean out the berry container.   Flip it upside down so that the container looks more like a tank.  Cut a round hole in the top of the container.  We made a hole large enough to put small green arm men inside the tank.  (If you plan to put men in your tank, make sure not to tape the berry container shut.  Getting them out of the hole can be tough.  It is easier to just open the container.)    Next, cover the container in camo or black tape (We used two types of tape to represent two different armies.  The Nazi’s were black).

Step 3: Attach the taped coffee pod, making sure it fits over the hole on the top of the tank.  Place a thin strip of tape on the inside of the pod and tank and he outside of the pod and tank to fully secure the pod.

Step 4: Cover either the Q-tip or small pencil in tape.  This will be your gun.  Once it is covered, punch a small hole through the middle front of the tank using the tip of a pair of scissors.  Tape the gun in place.


Step 5: Have fun playing with your homemade tank!

Finally, we completed a two-page worksheet I made on Dunkirk. Page one is a quick explanation of the event. Page two is a simple chart of the number of troops rescued each day. You can get a copy of the worksheet here: Dunkirk Worksheet and Graph.







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Filed under Mom Camp 2014, Mom Camp International-- Great Britain