Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Weapons, Fingerprints, and Patrol Dogs


Our March field trip took us to the Missouri State Highway Patrol headquarters last Wednesday. Ten of our families gathered for a tour of the museum and a viewing of a Bill Nye video about seat belt safety. We viewed lots of interesting artifacts, including old patrol cars, uniforms, and weapons. We learned about the capture of Bonnie and Clyde. We got to scan our fingerprints into a computer to learn about fingerprinting. Some of our kids used a computer to go through a driver safety course while others learned about railroad crossing safety. Each family was given a bag to take home with coloring books, pedestrian safety games, bicycle safety info, and a flyer with tips for kids for being safe and handling emergencies.

--by Evie M.

Checking out historical weapons.

Driver safety course.

Patrol dog.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Come wine and dine with us!

On Tuesday, April 1, we will have a fundraiser at Colton's Steak House. The restaurant will generously donate a portion of that evening's sales to our group which we will use to fund a field trip to Kansas City this fall. Let's show our support. The fundraiser is from 4 till 8 p.m. We hope to see you and your friends and family there!

Friday, February 14, 2014

Things I Learned Backstage . . .

Yesterday, I and 13 of my fellow homeschooling parents and kids took Backstage Kitchen Tours of our local Chik-fil-A. The owner, Tom Van Voorn, conducted the tours. He opened this Chik-fil-A just three weeks ago. Here are some things I learned Backstage:

  • Chik-fil-A's founder, Truett Cathy, opened his first restaurant in 1946.
  • At age 92, Cathy opened his "dream restaurant"--Truett's Luau--in Fayetteville, Georgia, in December last year. 
  • It took five years for Van Voorn to bring this location into operation.
  • Chik-fil-A does several studies before determining a location for a new restaurant. These studies include soil samples and demographic studies.
  • Van Voorn originally planned to open one restaurant in Columbia, Missouri, and two in Jefferson City, all within a month.
  • The price for the property in Columbia kept going up, so Van Voorn abandoned that idea. The original location for the second restaurant in Jefferson City was to be across from St. Mary's Hospital. St. Mary's upcoming relocation to a new facility changed those plans.
  • Construction took longer than expected. They went through several framing companies--some didn't show up to work and others didn't follow the blueprints.
  • The day before the Grand Opening, Van Voorn found out he needed a separate license to sell ice cream. Thankfully, it only cost $10 and was easy to obtain.
  • Chik-fil-A conducts what it calls the First 100 at each Grand Opening. In short, these 100 people camp out for the 24 hours before the official opening and receive one Chik-fil-A meal per week for a year.
  • This location's First 100 included people from as far away as Utah.
  • The First 100 event at this location occured on one of the coldest nights of the year.
  • Van Voorn provided a big tent and heaters to help keep the First 100 warm.
  • After being on and off the phone with his attornies and Chik-fil-A's public relations department, Van Voorn was told at about 9:30 p.m. to bring the First 100 inside for the night.
  • They stayed till 4:30 a.m. when they were ushered out so the restaurant could be cleaned and ready for the television and radio crews arriving at 5:15 a.m. for the 6 a.m. opening.
  • This location served 4,700 people on its Grand Opening day.
  • This location currently employs 101 people.
  • Seventy percent of its business is from the drive-thru.
  • All the food served at Chik-fil-A arrives fresh at the restaurant, except the chicken, which is frozen.
  • The chicken is all hand-breaded on-site.
  • The biscuits are made fresh every morning.
  • Lemonade is made fresh, on-site, every day from Sunkist lemons. Between five and 10 cases are cut and squeezed.
  • They use about 400 pounds of sugar every day--for sweet tea and lemonade.
  • Salads are prepared fresh after you order them.
  • A 500-pound tank behind the building provides the carbon dioxide for the fountain drinks.

These Backstage Kitchen Tours are free for the asking. They are limited to five people at a time and last five to 10 minutes.

Thanks, Tom and Chik-fil-A!

Monday, January 13, 2014

2014 Parents' Meeting

Yesterday we held our third annual Parents' Meeting. Seven of our families participated. Here is a sampling of what we did:
  • Reviewed 2013--events and finances.
  • Welcomed two new volunteers: Sue as Service Projector Coordinator and Evie as Art Club Coordinator.
  • Discussed several things we would like to do this year--including field trips, service projects, Art Club, Quest Club, Kidsfest, the July 4th parade, and a FUN trip to Kansas City.
  • A Q&A especially for those new to homeschooling.
We laughed a lot, came up with some great ideas, and got to know each other a little better.
We are looking forward to another great here at JCSHG. We hope you will join us!


Sunday, November 24, 2013

Fall Hayride and Bonfire

Two trailers for our crowd.

Eight of our families enjoyed lovely weather for a hayride and bonfire at Binder Park on Thursday, November 14. We started with a scenic hayride through the woods that ended at the bonfire area. The weather was cool enough for us to enjoy the bonfire by cooking s'mores, hot dogs, and popcorn. Much fellowship was had around the fire by the moms while the kids explored the nearby dry creek bed and the open area by running and playing games. Then another hayride back through the woods ended our two-hour adventure. We look forward to doing it again next year!
Enjoying the trip.

A little smoke.

Cooking class, anyone?

Monday, October 14, 2013

Take a Walk

Some of the gang.
For September Science-Nature club, we went to Runge Nature Center for a nature walk on the last day of the month. It was a drizzly cool morning, but that didn't stop us.

Look at that!
We all gathered by the big turtle, where the kids were given packets containing books about tree and bird identification. Also in the packets was a list of some of the more common birds to check off as we walked along the trails. Not five minutes into our walk we had seen three deer in the woods. Not a bad start! Then a little bit farther were some wild turkeys. We also were busy checking off birds on our check list.

The kids enjoyed some play time by the stream, jumping rocks and swinging on a vine. We also stopped at the pond to watch some phoebes (a local bird) diving for bugs. The kids tried to get the birds to talk back to them, but were unsuccessful.

We finished our walk and then enjoyed a picnic lunch at the pavilion, where we were also treated by the kids putting on a show. We had singing, dancing, karate and jokes. A great time was had by all!

--text by Sue B.
--photos by Melanie B.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Poop to Food

Our group for the field trip.
Last month we visited The Sage Garden in Jefferson City. It is housed in a geodesic dome and produces food year round. It uses an aquaponics system where the waste from the fish (blue tilapia) provides nutrients for the growing plants. The kids got to feed the fish and each family took home a cucumber grown inside the dome.

Margo leading the tour.
For details about the construction of the dome, please visit their blog. Also, check out The Sage Garden Facebook page.
Part of the aquaponics system.

Thank you, Margo and Charles for teaching us about aquaponics. And thank you for the cucumbers!

--by Evie M.

Cucumbers hanging on the vine.