September 9, 2014

Oceanview Redo (and ribbon cutting!)

 We visited Oceanview Park to check out the zip lines that were rumored to be amazing.  They did not disappoint us in the slightest.  My son rode it about a zillion times and I got a work out running from side to side.  I even gave it a few rides- it is fun!

 I think the rain kept most of the regulars away, but it was nice so the children only had to take turns with a few other children. 
We even took part in the ribbon cutting ceremony and could be on the news tonight!  It was a grand day!

September 2, 2014

Stephenson Playground

Another new playground in town!  This playground is small, but provides something wonderfully different.  There is a huge tree house structure that the kids loved.  It also had a long slide that was a little intimidating for the younger children, but even the adults took some turns!  There is a swing and balance log, but that is all.  The main emphasis of the playground is the huge structure. 

 If you have some time, you can take a look at the manufacturer of this equipment-  There are some amazing things.  I found my way to their 'playbook' and started daydreaming about amazing playgrounds that could be built here.  Someday!
On another note, it was the first skedaddle with only one child for many parents as school started.  It was sad to notice that some families were not there (kiddos in school), but so interesting to see how differently the younger siblings act without their older role model to guide them. 

August 26, 2014

Balto Seppla

 I am thoroughly impressed with the design of this new playground in town.  I found the conceptual design online and it was interesting to see an image for a library and Iditarod Interpretive trail.   My boys kept saying that it was an American Ninja Warrior training area.  All of the children had so much fun climbing, swinging and spinning until they got sick (maybe that was only my son). 

The younger children seemed most happy in the sand pit with shovels, buckets and the two diggers.  I love that there is a sand area in town, instead of just using the volleyball pits. 

 Skedaddle descended upon this playground with about 40 children (some babes in arms).  While this playground is not large, the three distinct areas let children spread out and have some space.  There even were enough benches for the parents needing a rest.

A big shout out to all of the Skedaddlers starting school tomorrow.  There are many Kindergartners and First Graders leaving skedaddle for the summer.  As a parent, please feel free to come and have your coffee to chat even if your kiddos are at school now.  Parents need socialization and we would love to chat with you each Tuesday morning!

August 19, 2014

Campbell Creek Skedaddle

I remember going to this playground as a child.  There was a little play structure with a wide metal slide.  On those hot Alaskan summer days, it would get so darn hot!  I like the new and creative elements now at the playground.  It provides physical challenges for older and younger children.  It seems most children like the climbing net and even tiny kiddos traverse it at the top. 

No matter how wonderful the playground is now, the children always end up at the river.  It is a safe place for wading or even crawling for the littlest ones.  A small channel is near the bank and provides a wonderful wading area.  There is a little bridge made out of cinder blocks to cross the little channel - perfect place for working on balance skills.  Once on the island, children build lakes, toss stones into the water and scare their parents by wading towards the bridge.  You can even see salmon in this river at the right time! 

Join us next week near the Loussac Library for playing at the Cuddy Park. 

August 12, 2014

Baxter Elementary School

I am constantly amazed by how the children play when they have a task in mind.  It was almost totally boys today (again).  While they did some fighting, rubber throwing and name calling, they also played store.  There is a small area that looks like a store underneath the main piece of equipment at the playground.  All of the boys congregated there and had a restaurant.  Most of the 'food' cost $400.00, but I was given a punchcard to help fund my lunch. 

August 5, 2014

Huffman Elementary - Football Game!

 It was a wonderful morning at skedaddle.  We left a batch of families still running around at about 12:15.  There were babies on blankets, young children on the little slides and older children organizing a "football game". (term used lightly).
 The sun was out and our backs felt hot!  I didn't bring enough water for my boys and they needed hats.  I am just out of practice for the sunny summer weather that was out today.
It was wonderful to see the children playing together.  The parents all loved sitting on the edges just chatting and watching the kiddos explore and play.

 One boy asked others to play football and after about 15 minutes of talking with the others they had a sort of game in order.  It was a hybrid of soccer, football and rugby.  They didn't tackle or injure others luckily.

 It was so wonderful to have no parental involvement.  The children split up into teams, made the game and played without our help or intrusion.  I was highly impressed by the lack of arguments and fighting.  I guess our kids are growing up!

August 3, 2014

Fry-Bake Dutch Oven

The Fry-Bake Dutch Oven

It is a little more difficult being a vegetarian on camping trips with my family.  I am not a fan of veggie dogs and it is hard to crisp tofu nicely in foil over the fire.  Consequently, I had to find other things that I would like to eat.  Enter the dutch oven.  This cooking implement opened up a whole new world of meal options to me!

We saved space by only bringing the Fry-Bake!

No longer would I have to eat peanut butter and jelly and ramen.  I could cook food that even tired and cranky children would cheer up for!

Pancakes in the Fry-Bake

On our last cabin trip (we carried backpacks and pushed a stroller with gear) I used the Fry-Bake Dutch Oven to cook pancakes, cinnamon rolls, pizza, grilled cheese, toasted bagels and hamburgers.  We also used it to boil water for cocoa and tea.

A friend gave me a quick lesson on its use by making me the most delicious rhubarb crumble.  She used this same pan and basically put coals on the top to brown that first and then put it in the fire to really cook the treat!

Cooking the cinnamon rolls!

I used this same method for making cinnamon rolls!  Butter the bottom of the dutch oven and then put the store bought cinnamon rolls (from a nice tube) on the bottom.  I placed them near the middle, but not touching.  After the fire had good coals, I used two sticks to carefully put coals on the top of the lid.  I kept replacing the coals with hot ones when they seemed to cool.  After about 10 minutes (it is hard to watch the time with children 'helping' to tend the fire), I put the dutch oven on the edge of the fire and kept rotating it every few minutes.  I opened the lid to see how the rolls were doing and they smelled so good and were a beautiful golden color on the top.  I used a spatula to lift one and saw that it was dark on the bottom so off the fire they came!  We plated them up and spread on the sweet frosting for a gooey treat! 

Gooey frosted cinnamon rolls hot from the Fry-Bake

The Fry-Bake Dutch Oven comes in two sizes and is $61.00 for the 8 inch and $73.00 for the 10 ½ inch version.  If you are family camping, I suggest the larger size!

Pizza in the Fry-Bake

Very light weight
Can use for a variety of cooking methods (baking, frying, boiling, etc.)
Expands your menu options
No seasoning or difficult maintenance
Fairly non-stick 
Can use over the fire, grill or stove

Just a beautiful place for cooking (and eating)

A little hard to move around the uneven coals
Wing nut on the top loosened (easy to tighten
A little difficult to pour hot water (we used a cup for a scoop)

I loved the Fry-Bake (if you can't tell).  I can't wait to take it out on our next trip!  I am already dreaming up our next meals to try - nachos, chocolate cake, rhubarb-strawberry crisp, fish soup (my boy's idea)...