Monday, August 11, 2008
Ohio State Fair

   This past Saturday we headed out to the state fair.  We got discounted tickets through Ross' work.  I asked Sadie what did she want to do at the fair.  She said eat a huge corn dog and get her face painted!  You got love a girl with a plan.   

   There was a pile up off the freeway as this was the last weekend for the fair and the temperatures were in the upper 70's.  Is feels like fall here instead of summer. 

   We saw a funny show with brown bears there were trained while we sat and enjoyed our first fried foods, a blooming onion.  Sadie loved the bears.  WE walked through the animal barns and petted sheep that had been judged.  Sadie had a snowcone ans we watched a magic act.  There were nice shady spots everywhere to take in the scene.  After the snowcone we hit the rides.  We forked out enough for Sadie to do 5 rides and we traded off riding with her.  The first was the giant slide.  As we walked to the top i was thinking, crap this is high.  Sadie and went down together screaming most of the way.  That first hump is slow then you fly down!  The rest of the rides were much calmer kids rides that Sadie enjoyed. She would have gone all day but I really was not into spending 100s of dollars on carnival fun. 

   We found the giant corn-dogs and headed for a front row spot to view the pig races.  We had seen the pigs before at the rodeo but I can never get enough of them.  Too Cute!


 We ended the day walking through the petting zoo and then the bunny cages.  We also saw the chicken and ducks that had been judged.  There are some fancy chickens out there.  We were all pooped after 5 hours out last treat was homemade ice cream, Yummy.  Everyone had a nice hot both once home to get off that lovely farm smell.


Posted at 07:20 pm by Aburghardt
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Tuesday, August 05, 2008
How its made



   On Monday Sadie and I got a lesson in how metal whistles are made.  The American Whistle Company, which the only company in America to make metal whistles, has its factory in Columbus, Ohio.  I read about it in a travel magazine and called to book a tour.   

   We checked in for our group time and then the guide was ready to start.  She stated off asking all the kids what are things you would use whistles for.  The typical responses of coaches, life guards and police were called out.  She told us that they donated 3000 whistles to American Red Cross after 9-11 and they were used to search for victims.  They also make a special 24 k gold plated whistle with a fancy walnut box for the officials each year in the Superbowl.  You can purchase one of those for a mere $60. 

   We were not allowed to take pictures of any of the actual machines or workers but I did get a shot of the board that shows the steps of the process.  This factory has been featured on the show, "How Its Made", (episode 100) and on the show, "Made In America". 

   The whistles are made of brass for the best sounds quality and durability.  They are plated at a factory in Toledo, Ohio and return for packing at the Columbus plant.  Everything else in done in Columbus.  We saw the two machines that stamped out the top and bottom pieces then in another machine bend them into the right shapes.  The whistle is only two pieces.  The top gets stamped with whatever design logo they are doing then the top and bottom are soldered together.  After that 2000 whistles go into a big drum that spins with soap, water and plastic bits to smooth them out and get rid of any sharp edges. Then it is off to be plated and in a couple of days they are back to be finished.   

   Every wonder when and how they get the ball in the there?  Well, the whistle will blow without the ball, she blew one for us to show that.  The sound is not as pleasing to the human ear without the ball.  The ball used to be cork but now is a synthetic rubber they make there.  The ball is put in after the whistle is all put together.  A machine compresses the ball then uses air to shoot in into the whistle. After that the last step is to put the ring on for attaching to things.  They do the packing in a variety of ways, some just whistles, some with lanyards and rubber tips.  The factory makes the rubber tips there too but they buy the lanyards from another company. 

   Everyone got a free whistle at the end and they had a little shop where you could buy lanyards, rubber tips and more whistles.  Sadie took hers just the way it came but we did get a magnet with the factory name to add to our collection.


Posted at 07:15 pm by Aburghardt
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Sunday, August 03, 2008
Honda Family Day

  The research and development office of Honda that Ross' works for had a family day at Kings Island Theme park on Saturday.  The company gave us all tickets to get in, a parking pass, and meal tickets for lunch and dinner.  We were totally game for some just about free fun. 

   The park is in Mason, Ohio just outside of Cincinnati.  It was a 95 mile drive from where we are staying right now.  We got up and were out the door by 8 am.  We were parked and through the gate waiting for the rides to start by 9:50 am.  The park let people in but rides were not going till the official 10 am open time. 

   We spent the morning in the kids Universal land that featured all the Nickelodeon caracters and rides.  Our first ride was what I thought was a kids roller coaster.  We got in line and hopped on.  Coming up to the first hill, i thought uh, oh.  Sadie and screamed through the rest of ht ride and she asked not to do it again. I agreed.  We are both wimps.  It was rate a level 4 thriller and the park goes up to level 5.  We are clearly level 3 and lower these days.  Ross said he was surprised i picked it!  I did not see the sign, oh well, that was a good thing.     

   We did lots more rides and then headed for lunch.  There were hamburgers, hot dogs, friend chicken, fruit salad, chips, soda, water and ice cream to top it off.  We ate and headed to the water park.  The water area is small with lots of little baby things and lots of big adult things. Sadie was caught in the middle.  We played in the water about three hours then it got so packed we were like sardines in the pools and you had to wait in line for the lazy river!  We dressed and headed to dinner.

   We had bar-b-que chicken and pulled pork and cheesecake.  We sat and cooled down there awhile and planned the rest of the evening.  We hit a few more rides and Ross and I learned cheesecake is not  a good dessert choice in the heat. So we passed up some of the huge rides till next time. 

   We ended the day with an indoor ice sating show.  I knew Sadie would like it and it would be cool inside so I was willing to sit through it. It turned out to be a great show, very entertaining.  Highly recommend it.

The park was great and if you are a roller coaster lover they have tons of them. I would not bother with the water park unless you could go a weekday when the crowds are down. We got home about 10:40 pm. Sadie was a real trooper through the day.  We had not down a 12 hour day like that in a while.



Posted at 07:44 pm by Aburghardt
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Monday, July 28, 2008

   Saturday we spent the day at the Center of Science and Industry in downtown Columbus, known as COSI. I had read about it in a magazine plus it was recommended by the sales guy that sold us our house.  We pent 5 hours there and could have stayed longer except they were closing for the day. 

   There are numerous exhibits on three floors.  Along with things to see and do all through the hallways throughout the building.  We did almost all except for the CSI part because it is geared for older kids who read well.

  • csi: the experience
  • space
  • ocean
  • life
  • progress
  • gadgets
  • big science park
  • little kidspace
  • hallway exhibits
  • past exhibits
  • traveling exhibit rental
  •  Cosi motto: We have the passion to inspire a generation of future inventors, engineers, and dreamers, but we need your help.  As a non-profit institution, COSI relies on  the support of individual and corporate donors.

    COSI exists to show children that every person, every idea, and every individual contribution has the power to change the world. COSI provides an exciting and informative atmosphere for those of all ages to discover more about our environment, our accomplishments, our heritage, and ourselves.  We motivate a desire toward a better understanding of science, industry, health, and history through involvement in exhibits, demonstrations, and a variety of educational activities and experiences. 

    Gadgets was were we played the most.  My favorite was the ocean area.  This place is a must see for families.  Also if you are a certified teacher you get in for free!  Here is a video of just some of the things we played with.  The rats playing basketball was truly entertaining.  The ref spent the first part talking about how they condition the rats to learn to play. 

    Ross rode on the:High Wire Unicycle

    The High Wire Unicycle is a unique experience that allows you to pedal a unicycle on a 1.5 inch cable spanning 84 feet while 17 feet above ground.  What keeps you from falling?  Balance.  All objects have a center of mass.

    For stability, it is important to keep your center of mass over your base of stability (where your feet touch the ground).  In the case of the High Wire Unicycle, the attached 250 pound weight lowers your center of mass to below your feet and below where the unicycle contacts the cable.  This makes you so stable that it is impossible to fall.  The High Wire Unicycle also acts as a class 1 lever with the counterweight and the rider's body being the two weights and the cable contact being the fulcrum.


    Posted at 09:19 am by Aburghardt
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    Sunday, July 20, 2008
    Columbus Zoo

       We ventured down the road this weekend to the Zoo.  The Columbus Zoo is huge and so we got a family pass to we did not have to cram it into one day.  There is also a water park and an amusement park on the same grounds.  There used to be a Six Flags park but zoo bought it and has since reopened.

       We wondering through about half or so of the zoo on Sunday.  It very nice lots of trees and shade and most of the animals are in natural type habitats.  We saw huge moose with enormous antlers.  I don't think Sadie had ever seen a moose in person before.  The zoo has lots of discovery ares to go into and touch and learn about the animals.  The brown bear was having a lot of fun wading around in the water and scratching his head on a log.  The eagle was very cool too. Sadie was impressed by it size.  The weather was some what cloudy so not too hot. 

       Saturday we did some errands and went hunting for decent Mexican food.  I have found an ad with a coupon for a place with a similar name to a San Antonio favorite.  After a few wrong turns ( the road signs are nuts here) and a complete circle we found it.  It was a bit of a hole in wall but we went in any way.  Well there was no "queso" but there was cheese dip label as spicy.  The queso is Sadie's only reason for going in.  We ordered and hoped it would not burn her tastebuds off.  No problem there as she was given melted Monterey jack cheese with no seasoning what so ever.  They did not make there own tortillas ( which are hard to find here) and Ross' fajitas were more of a spicy stir fry that contained mushrooms.  I had chicken mole which was good but it was just the meat I though it was an enchilada.  We tons left that we ate for dinner Sunday.  But we wont have to worry about finding it again.  We have to find somewhere that makes fresh tortillas and real queso!




    Posted at 06:10 pm by Aburghardt
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    Tuesday, July 15, 2008
    Around town

    Sadie has endured many hours of house hunting but I am pleased to say we are done.  We signed a contract this Saturday on a brand new home that is a spec house that will be ready in about 30 days!  We are thrilled and it is still at the trim stage so we get to pick the flooring and the countertops still.  Hopefully Sadie can put up with going to the design center to do that.  And no she does not get to pick pink carpet for her room.

    We treated her to a movie today and hung out and played most of the day.  We also got to see one of my moms' sisters.  Judy and her husband Mark live in Indiana and were driving through today on the way to my grandma's in MAryland.  SO they stopped and chatted for a bit.  That is how Sadie got the new dress up items i have pictured in the slideshow.  She was thrilled and spent the rest of the day dressing up.  We even got on the webcam with my parents and showed of her new style.

       We will be living in Marysville, Ohio.  I am sure most of you can google it to find out all about it.  It is a small town of about 22,000 just 20 minutes outside the Columus area.  It will be very close to Ross' office and cheaeper taxes with great schools so that drew us that way.  Our house will be just a few blocks from the elementary school.  Which will be good for me in the winter since I have not a clue how to drive in the snow. 



    Posted at 08:00 am by Aburghardt
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    Friday, July 11, 2008
    First New Adventure in Ohio

       After a few days of house hunting Sadie and I were in need of some fun.  We have done the pool in our apartment complex several times but need more adventure than that.   
       While chatting with the Realtor about directions to get to where we met her one day she realized that we would pass a neat park where lot of kids play.  She called it a spray park with water and I would see it at the last corner turn I would take where some giant bunnies were.  The day we drove by I missed it the first time but heading home that night I saw the park.  So Friday we packed a picnic and towels and heading for the park.     
       It was a busy place that most of the locals must love because they were set for the day with umbrellas, wagons and coolers.  We headed out after 1pm and it was warm but not sweltering like Texas.  There was a breeze that blew every now and then. 
       We ate first then checked out the bunnies.  They are gigantic metal statues on the top of the hill.  Mostly the boys were hanging up their doing unknown things to them. Then it was time to get wet.  I think it took Sadie a whole minute before she was jumping across and getting wet.  I was not the perfect mom and did not have all things she thought she needed.  So i am sure we will go there again with the necessities.  Bucket, sunglasses, water guns, etc.

    Posted at 07:58 pm by Aburghardt
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    Saturday, July 05, 2008
    Big Week!

       June was a busy moth for us.  We had Vacation Bible School, sold our house, packed up the house, visited family, and crammed in as many treks to Six Flags as we could stand.  Sadie and I even went to Santa Fe, NM to my sister's baby shower.  But I think that this last week starting with he last day of June was the fullest yet.

       Here is a recap of some big moments for all of us.  First we started Monday off bright and early.  Not only was it my birthday but we closed on the house we sold in San Antonio.  With that done by 9:30 am we picked up a rental car and said see ya later to Ross' parents.  Next we drove straight toward Houston where we spent the next few days hanging out with some old friends.  We said bye to them on Wednesday and then drove to Fort Worth to spend some time with my parents.

       Through all this Sadie has had her first loose tooth.  We were trying to make it wait till we got to Ohio but it was just hanging.  SO on the 4th of July Sadie lost her first tooth at Grandma and Grandpa's house.  They were thrilled to host such an occasion.  The tooth fairy brought a dollar but Grandpa stopped her and told her this was a big deal and helped out and so she left an additional $20 in honor of it being a TEXAS tooth!  When Sadie checked her pillow she said, "Yea! 2 dollars."  I had to say look again.  I don't think it will kick in till she sees how much more sh can buy with 21 dollars. 

       I got a new camera for my birthday so Sadie got my old one.  She took most of these pictures of herself and her loose tooth.


       Today is finally Saturday and we are exhausted.  We flew in Columbus, Ohio this afternoon and got to our temporary apartment.  Sadie was happy to have a room to her self, dug out the toys she packed and played alone for hours.  We are an hour ahead of our old time zone so I am sure it will take a few days to adjust.  But I am sure nothing like the crazy 14 hours we had in Japan. 

    Next week will be filled with house hunting and learning to get around town. I am ready to be still and relax a bit.  We will surely have many posts to come of new things we see.


    Posted at 08:39 pm by Aburghardt
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    Tuesday, June 10, 2008
    Dancing Girl!

       Sadie has been taking a ballet class since January and has loved every second of it.  She is definitely a girly girl.  This past weekend they had their annual recital.  The theme for the whole show was Alice in Wonderland and Sadie's class was the sea billows.  Friday night all the classes had a dress rehearsal where the parents were allowed to take pictures and videos. Saturday a professional crew did the videos so we will get a DVD of the whole performance. 

       Sadie is the first one to come onto the stage and I think for the first time in a big production she did great! Of course, I am her mom so I might be a little bias.


    Posted at 10:26 pm by Aburghardt
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    Friday, May 23, 2008
    Pre-K Graduate

    Click to play prek

       Sadie graduated from her Pre-k class this Tuesday.  The kids put on a little show with songs and bible verses.  It was all very cute and enjoyable.  She has had a great school year with fabulous teachers.  Ms. Kim and Ms. Karen have loved and cared for her from day one and that truly made going to school worth it for Sadie.  After the ceremony the parents joined their student for cake and punch.  We were also given a scrapbook of the year's event.  Pictures were taken of the special days like when the firetruck came.  These teachers put so much work into these memory books and we will treasure it forever.  Sadie has already read through it at least five times.

    Posted at 02:50 pm by Aburghardt
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    The Burghardt family was living in Japan for one year. Ross is in a new job with Honda at the research and development office in Ohio. We are now all in Ohio ready to start a new adventure. House hunting will soon start again.

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