Health, Parenting, play, Science

Hard Hat Harry

“Mommy, please, please, please, please, can I watch more Hard Hat Harry?” says my 3-year-old in a pleading whisper.

We have a new obsession in our house here, and it is known as Hard Hat Harry. I have been a little more lax with the television time while I am suffering from the First Trimester Troubles but I still had to tell him “no” as gently as I could. We discussed it back and forth and he finally acquiesced and laid down for a nap when I said “Studies have shown that children learn more from interactive play than they do from television.” I don’t know 100% if that’s the truth but I believed it when I said it.

Television shows like Hard Hat Harry make me question such a statement, because I feel like I learn something new every time I watch them. I don’t believe I learn something new every time I play with magnet tiles. Although, I imagine the standards of learning are slightly different for an adult and a 3-year-old child still exploring the world.

Some things I have learned from our new favorite show:

  1. Airplanes are SUCKED into the sky! The way the air flows over the wings creates a suction effect that lifts the airplanes into the sky.
  2. There is a kind of truck that carries its own bridge on its back. It lays out the bridge, drives over, and picks it up again!
  3. An Orange tree grows an average of 1,500 oranges in one growing season!
  4. Nuts are harvested by a machine called a Tree Shaker. It literally shakes the tree so all the ripe nuts fall off and then sucks them up like a vacuum.

Hard Hat Harry was filmed in the mid 90’s, so the picture quality might not be what you are used to, but he is a genie that takes a detailed look at many of the topics our kids are fascinated with.

Yesterday when Mr. 3 was asking to watch more Hard Hat Harry, I told him that our bodies needed to be engaged in order to stay strong and grow. Later he said, “I’ve been playing really hard! Can I watch Hard Hat Harry now?”

What are your favorite educational TV shows? How long do you let your kids watch? 

Daily Lessons, play, Projects

Warning: Severe Heat in the Seattle area!

It’s 90 degrees in Seattle. Yowza! How are we keeping cool? We aren’t. One thing that surprised us when we moved here from Texas was the general lack of centralized A/C.

We have a little unit A/C but the kids won’t leave the door closed, so it’s no good to anyone.

Actually, it does a great job of blowing bubbles. Still, if you are paying $200 for a bubble blower… you are crazy and probably insolvent. 

Forgive me, the heat makes me cranky. 

What we are doing is taking it easy and keeping busy. We’ve got some collaging with contact paper, playdoh, painting on the patio, sticking pipe cleaners into things that have holes, and drinking lots of water.

Also, playing with ice until the freezer runs out. I took an idea from my recent follower Heather (thanks!) and froze some of their water resistant toys in a big bowl of water. Mr. 3 poured salt all over it and we played with together for a little while, at least 30 minutes.  

The salt was as old as he is, so I’m not too heart broken about him using the whole bottle. 

How are you keeping cool? 

By the way, I’m super excited to announce… that Mr. 3 has started “reading” to Mr. 1 and finds many opportunities to explain things to him. 


“No, that’s not a truck, that’s a tractor” 

I love it. I love it. I love it. 


Downtown Park

Today we visited a new park! Once every two months we visit a friend of my husband who lives in Bellevue, Washington. We normally meet at the Brazilian churascura restaurant called Novilhos. Today, however, we met at Fogo De Chao which is in downtown Bellevue. 

All the different steaks were delicious and because it was brunch, the boys got to enjoy lots of berries and fruit. 

Afterwards, my clever husband suggested we take the boys to the park across the street. He and Mr. 3 quickly ran off to the playground. Mr. 1 had different ideas.

He wandered the grass and saw some low swooping birds. Then he noticed a dog walk by. This led him to another lady with two little dogs and an area with a low stone wall that he could climb up and down.

Next, he wandered over to where a group of men were building a concert stage until we were asked to leave. 

To distract him from the disappointment, I took him down to the waterfall area where we stayed for the remainder of the trip.

He enjoyed wandering up and down the hill, looking at the waterfall, seeing the ducks, chasing the dragonflies, walking over the metal hatches in the ground, climbing the low bench walls, and wandering as far away as possible before mommy gets worried.

 Can you find my child? He’s waving at you! Did you know dragonflies have stripes? 

We practiced walking on our tiptoes to sneak up on this guy. Tiptoes is a skill Mr. 1 recently discovered. He can’t get enough of climbing! 

Here he was admiring the waterfall and making the sign for “water”.

Finally, when Mr. 3 was tired of the playground (which looked really cool from where I was standing) he came and joined us. Then he and Mr. 1 jumped in on a game of “pass the ball” that this super nice family was playing. 

Mr. 3 just chased the ball until they kicked it to him, and he tried really hard to kick it back. It was really adorable to watch, and I didn’t interfere at all. 

He told me later that he wanted a big red swinging bench like they had at the playground, and a colorful ball like the family had. Then both kids promptly fell asleep in the car. 

I think this is a park definitely worth coming back to. 

What is special about your favorite park?