Friday, January 7, 2011

JumpstART at the Irving Arts Center

We visited the Irving Arts Center this morning to participate in their free JumpstART program. JumpstART is a joint partnership with the Irving Arts Center and Irving Public Library and it combines stories and fun art projects with a new theme each month.



Today's JumpstART event celebrated the birthday of AA Milne who wrote the classic stories of Winnie the Pooh. Rachel loves Winnie the Pooh and all of his friends.



There was a big table set up with lots of Winnie the Pooh story books, stuffed animals, and toys. Our hostess read each and every Pooh book while taking several breaks to let the kids sing and dance or watch her toy Tigger bounce across the table.



Nicholas was a little grumpy about having to sit in on such a little kid event. However, he paid attention to all of the stories being read and even called out some answers when the reader asked questions. (smile) He's still a little guy.

Rachel was a squirmy two year old. She sat in my lap for the most part but she enjoyed reaching over and playing with another mom's jacket and toddling over to talk with another little girl and general little kid squirminess.



After the storytime was over, Rachel spent some time coloring pictures of Winnie the Pooh and his friends. I loved it that they worked together on a coloring page.



One of several finished coloring pages. You know, it's just fascinating to me how different Rachel and Nicholas are. Nicholas has never liked coloring pages. He would either refuse to color them or else he would make a couple of big swoops around the page with one crayon and called it done. Rachel seems to love coloring pages. She spends a lot of time on them using multiple colors and for the most part she seems to try to color within the lines. So different.



Later we spent some time wandering around the art center. Both kids were intrigued by the glass block.



Rachel had to lick it...ewww!



Say cheese!



I talked to the kids aboout some of the art work we looked at. Nicholas had fun taking pictures of tons of art, including lots of pictures of me looking at art.



I had to get a picture of Nicholas with this piece from the book Ox Cart Man. His grandmother gave him this book years ago and he still enjoys it.



This next one is artwork about Jonah and The Big Fish. Rachel liked the fish a lot.



The wee ones were starting to get wiggly and restless and kept trying to run in the building so we headed outdoors where they could be a little more free to run and play. There is a small but nice sculpture garden in front of the Arts Center and Nicholas remembered it even though it has been quite a while since we've been there. He was proud to show it all to Rachel for the first time.



Nicholas and Rachel both love the water columns. They are just big columns with steady streams of water flowing down all sides.



Nicholas happily danced between the columns.



Then he met some new friends and they played hide and seek around the columns. Rachel just enjoyed getting wet!





Notice how she positions her hands so that the water flows down her arms. She loved it!





We spent some more time walking (and hiding) around the sculptures. I found you!



Now where's Rachel?



I love this video of Rachel pretending to read one of the signs by a sculpture!



It was about lunch time so I took the kids to La Madeleine for a bite to eat. I like their food but I must say it was not a kid-friendly experience. Anything involving going through a line and holding a tray while fruitlessly trying to keep hold of a squirmy 2 year old is just not fun. Once some major feats were accomplished and I gave up wishing for more than one arm, we finally all made it to our table.

Aaah, my reward. Chicken crepes. Yum!



Nicholas will sometimes skip the kid's meal menu in search of better food choices. I was proud of him for choosing the turkey bistro sandwich over the PB&J on the kid's menu. It looked pretty good.



But there was an unforeseen problem. The sandwich was great for an adult but really big for a kid's mouth.



Nicholas' solution: Squish it with your hand to make it fit!



The Irving Arts Center is located at 3333 N MacArthur in Irving and offers great programs throughout the year for children and adults.

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