Tag Archives: science

If We Were Having Coffee…Sunshine and Sand

If we were having coffee this Saturday you would have had to travel a bit further southeast to find me here at the Jersey Shore (and, BTW, the “Jersey Shore” we go to is nothing like the TV show, not even a little).

Miss Dee and I are enjoying our annual girls weekend at the beach. Today’s plan involves no plans at all, going with the flow and totally relaxing. We left the boys at home. They have tickets to a Phillies game tonight so they don’t really mind.

If we were having coffee we could sit by the pool and enjoy the sunshine. The beach is about a block away so we could even walk down there and watch the waves. The condo we stay in here, thoughtfully shared by my husband’s stepmom, is in the quiet, family friendly area of Wildwood Crest. The beach is huge but at this time of the year it can get still get rather crowded. Since Miss Dee and I like to have space we go to the beach in the morning and pool in the afternoon so let me get right to catching you up on my week.

If we were having coffee I would tell you that STEAM camp this week went very well. The children enjoyed learning about Inventions and Inventors. We designed new cars and got to see a cool demonstration by a Tesla Model X car. We learned about the advantages of electric vehicles and it even “danced” for us, flashing its lights and opening and closing its wing doors in time with music!

The campers made hydrological elevators with Popsicle sticks, created their own board game, learned about lasers and really got into the Invention Scavenger Hunt we put together. It was an exhausting but fun week.

If we were having coffee I would invite you to put on your swimsuit and accompany us to the beach. We can continue our chat, have a swim, do some people watching and just relax! I’m so glad you stopped by. After you’ve brushed off the sand, visit Eclectic Ali, our Coffee Share host and catch up with the rest of the Coffee Crew.

Trivia Tuesday!

It’s Tuesday so it must be time for another edition of INVENTOR TRIVIA!

Here goes…

In 1905 eleven year old Frank Epperson was attempting to make his own version of soda pop, a popular new drink. After mixing some flavor powder with water, young Frank was called to bed, leaving his concoction in a cup on the back porch. Over night the temperature dropped below freezing. When he awoke, Frank found the liquid frozen solid, the stirring stick still sticking out the top. Behold, the Popsicle was born!

Apparently Mr Epperson didn’t appreciate the appeal of his frozen treats because he didn’t end up patenting it until 1924 after he served them at a fireman’s ball and received rave reviews. Originally marketed as the Eppsicle, Frank later changed the name after his children started referring to them as Popsicles!

Frank Epperson with his granddaughter

Thank goodness for that! Can you imagine calling to a bunch of kids playing outside on a hot summer day, “Hey! Who wants an Eppsicle?!”

Weird.

Trivia Tuesday!!!

Summer STEAM Camp is almost upon us! For those of you wondering, STEAM stands for science, technology, engineering, art and math. This summer’s theme is “Inventions and Inventors” and I’m pretty darn excited about it! My buddy Jill, the head camp honcho, has tasked me with putting together an Inventors Scavenger Hunt and I am discovering all kinds of things I never knew before about how some of the most common stuff came to be.

Here’s a little snippet of invention trivia just to get your Tuesday morning started!

BubbleWrap, that fun and indispensable packing item was discover quite by accident by two guys who were trying to invent 3D wall paper!

True story!

In 1957, inventors Marc Shuvon and Alfred Fielding, convinced (for some reason) that 3D wallpaper would be a real money maker, glued two shower curtains together trapping air bubbles in between. The wall paper idea turned out to be a dud but they soon discovered another, more lucrative, use for their invention.

I’ll admit, I’m one of those people who enjoys popping the bubbles. It’s very therapeutic but, if I had one wish, it would be for Marc and Alfred to have discovered a biodegradable material with which to make their wrap. Let’s face it, once made, bubble wrap never goes away. We always reuse any that comes into our house. In fact, I recently discovered a way to paint with it like this…

Crayola.com

…and, according to home improvement guy Bob Villa, there’s a bunch of other uses too, from insulating your windows to padding your hangers!

Seems like Fielding and Shuvon with their wall paper idea were thinking pretty small in comparison.­čśŐ

If We Were Having Coffee…3/20/16

Good morning!

If we were having coffee…you would notice that breakfast has morphed into brunch and that I am still in my fuzzy blue robe and sporting some serious bed-head.

Sorry about that.

That’s how it’s been around her recently. I’m not sure if it’s the hour we lost last week, the allergy causing buds, or nasty menopausal hormones that are the culprit, but my sleep pattern has been way off. Usually during the week I’m asleep by ten or ten-thirty, ready for that six-fifteen wake up call, but this week I’ve been tossing and turning till way past two. Isn’t it funny how, on nights like that, you can’t find any comfortable positions but in the morning every position comfortable!?!

Anyway, due to my sleep deprivation, this is the mug of choice today….

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Fair warning in case you choose to join the conversation.

I even took a day off after Monday night’s concert and slept in, hoping that would clear some of the fog from my brain. I think I’ll just blame my sleepless nights on the scourge of every middle age woman- hormones. They’re kind of the catch all for anything annoying after the age of fifty.

Anyway…

If we were having coffee…(after I was done complaining, and after you were done laughing at the state of my hair) I would ask you about your week. How has the weather been in your corner of the world? I would tell you how extremely unhappy I was to see snow falling on all the new buds around my yard yesterday. I think I actually growled. Today is just cloudy but the tempeture is only 39f. We are going to have to do much better than that after all it is the first day of Spring.

If we were having coffee…I would tell you that one of my favorite teachers at work is starting a new business this summer and has asked me to take part. I am so excited! She and one of the other teachers are hosting a summer STEAM camp for four days in July. For those unfamiliar STEAM stands for “Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) something these two ladies are passionate about. Me? Not so much but they manage to make it exciting which is why I agreed to help. My job is like the Art Director. Perfect, right?! Each day has a different theme that requires some arty stuff to go with it so I’m working on creating a roller coaster back drop, an astronaut photo shoot and secret agent ID badges among other things. They are hoping to enroll about forty 4th through 7th graders for the camp. If they reach that, we might do a second four days later in the month.

If we were having coffee…I would tell you that Hubby and I have been trying to discover the source of a leak in the back of our refrigerator. Something in the freezer keeps periodically draining water down into the fridge. I’ve defrosted the freezer and checked ou the ice maker but it is still happening so today we will be pulling out the whole fridge and following some wiki-how instructions on how to unclog some sort of hose down the back. Wish us luck. On the upside, the inside of my refrigerator has never been this clean!

Well, it’s time for me to be productive (or possibly take a nap) so, if we were having coffee, I would suggest you run on over to Diana’s digs at Part Time Monster, and check out the rest of the Coffee Share posts.

Thanks so much for stopping by. Have a great week!!!

 

 

If We Were Having Coffee…11/1/15

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If we were having coffee…we could talk about how November has crept in when we weren’t looking. Our area is in the throws of an Indian Summer so it doesn’t feel like November but the calendar says it is. One good thing is that tonight we turn the clocks back. Not being a morning person, I dislike getting up before┬áthe sun.

If we were having coffee...I would ask if you and your family celebrated Halloween yesterday? I would tell you a little about our day. Since our neighborhood is always very lively with trick-or-treaters, Hubby and I have gotten into the habit of sitting on the porch handing out candy rather than getting up every few minutes to answer the door. The evening was very mild unlike some years when we have been bundled up against the cold. Not that cold weather ever slows down the candy seekers!  The excitement and adrenaline keeps them warm!

I really don’t miss the days of chasing after Mr D and Miss Dee as they rushed from house to house. Given the choice, I usually volunteered to stay home and hand out candy while Hubby did the walking (he’s in much better shape). It’s also nice that they are now in charge of figuring out a costume for themselves if they decide to dress up. For the past week I’ve been asking Mr D what he was going to be for Halloween. His answer…

“An overworked college student.”

Then, last night, at 7pm I found myself digging around in the attic looking for a pair of goggles because he and his friend decided to go to a party at the college, and they wanted to be Doc Brown and Marty McFly from “Back to the Future”. He must get his last minute Halloween costume genes from my┬ámother!

If we were having coffee…I would tell you that I’ve been feeling a bit scientifically challenged. Part of my job as an instructional aide is offering in-class support for students during their science lessons. For the past four years I’ve helped out in the third grade. I can tell you anything you want to know about dinosaurs or the life cycle of the meal worm or even about what penguins eat. That stuff I’ve got down, however….this year I’ve been bumped up to fifth grade science and I can tell you for sure I am not┬á“Smarter┬áThan a Fifth Grader”!

Last week the classroom teacher was out sick and the substitute and I found ourselves blindly leading the students through a work sheet on types of matter and chemical reactions! Luckily they knew what they were doing for the most part. I understand “matter” you know “solid, liquid, gas”. I get how the molecules are closer together in a solid and further apart in a gas but when we started getting into how substances combine to create chemical reactions and how chemical and physical reactions differ in the way the molecules combine or don’t combine…my brain started to hurt.

I was an art major for crying out loud!! I didn’t really like this stuff the first time I learned it. Thank goodness for YouTube. Tomorrow I will be searching out videos and giving myself a crash course in fifth grade science! Wish me luck.

If we were having coffee… I would thank you for stopping by and wish you a pleasant, relaxing Sunday. We will be doing some yard work around here. If you’re not busy, you are welcome to grab a rake!

This post is part of the Weekend Coffee Share courtesy of Diana at Part Time Monster. Stop by and check out the other fun blogs!

Grade School the Second Time Around (part 7)

Here we are at the end of the school year so this will be the last installment until September (unless I learn something really exciting over the summer)!

  • Some salt marsh birds build their nest out of  straw that grows in the marsh. Because the straw is hollow, the nests float and move up and down with the tide water. The birds “anchor” the nests with seaweed tied to mussel shells buried in the sand. This keep the nest from floating away.
  • The male fiddler crab has one large claw and one small. He waves this large claw in the air to attract female fiddler crabs.
  • Mudskippers are fish that can live on land as well as in the water. They use their fins to drag themselves along on the sand and they breath through their gills by storing water in pockets on their sides that keep their skin moist.

And with that bit of water related trivia I’m off to the beach!!

Grade School the Second Time Around (part 6)

We have moved on to our next science topic “Oceans”! Here is what I rediscovered this week…

  • The Pacific Ocean has more salt than the Atlantic Ocean. Not sure what other differences this makes but one neat fact is that it is easier to float in the Pacific.
  • Fish, such as sharks, tuna and salmon move their tails side to side when they swim but sea mammals such as dolphins and whales move their tails up and down.
  • A shark’s skeleton is made entirely of carterige. That is why it can almost bend in half when it thrashes around.
  • This one is very depressing: Due to the way the currents move, there is an “island” of trash and garbage about the size of The state of Texas floating in the middle of the Pacific Ocean between California and Hawaii. ­čś×

Something to think about, huh?

Grade School the Second Time Around (Part 4)

It’s that time again! Here are a few interesting little tidbits I learned (or relearned) this week:

  • All meat eating dinosaurs had three front facing toes on their feet with a shorter fourth toe in the rear, just like birds.
  • Uranus is the only planet that spins on its side. Scientist believe that it may have been hit by a meteor the size of Earth causing it to tip onto its side.
  • Pluto (the former planet) was named by an 11 year old English girl named┬áVenetia Burney. She suggested the name Pluto to her grandfather, in honor of the Roman god of the underworld. Her grandfather forwarded the name to the observatory where Pluto was discovered in 1930.

I guess I either slept through this stuff the first time around or my brain just pushed it out in order to make room for other stuff like recipes and song lyrics? No matter. I got it this time!

Grade School the Second Time Around (part 3)

Hear is what I learned this week….

  • Cumulus clouds (the big fluffy kind) are made up of water molecules while cirrus clouds (the wispy kind) which are higher in the atmosphere, are made of ice molecules.
  • All meat eating dinosaurs walked on two legs.
  • Venus is the only planet in our solar system that spins clockwise. Earth and all the others spin counterclockwise.

I don’t know about you guys but I’m feeling smarter everyday! ­čśŐ