Around mid-September we decided to go to take the kids to the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta this year. It was a great trip. To help build anticipation I hung two “hot-air balloons” up in our house where I kids could see them every day. They are each made out of a paper lantern with an origami box from construction paper hung underneath. We hung one from our ceiling fan and the other in a doorway. Iddo liked them right away. Shimri and Shimei were intrigued but didn’t think much of them.
After we got back from seeing real hot-air balloons though, Shimri kept running back and forth between the two, pointing at them, and saying “balloon” with a lot of excitement. She did it for several days actually. Even today if I were to ask her where the balloons are she’d run excitedly between the two.
When we got home we did an art project to share with grandparents about hot-air balloons. Iddo’s was a multi-step project showing a close-up of a balloon. First we put a circle of paper inside our salad spinner and then dripped some watered down tempera paint into it and then spun like crazy. It makes for a real neat effect. Because it had been cloudy the day we attended the mass ascension in Albuquerque she insisted that her blue sky have clouds in it. We grabbed a cotton ball, spread it out a bit, clipped it with a clothespin for a handle, and she “stamped” white clouds all over the blue papers. We glued the balloon to the top and then used full finger prints for the baskets. She knew balloons had people in the baskets so we did thumb-print faces on them. We did five balloons with three people each and 14 of those people were happy. She insisted that last person was “freaking out.” A little bit of crayon for the ropes connecting the balloon to the basket and to indicate the fire that she knew was part of the hot-air balloon and they were finished. Yea!
Shimri’s and Shimei’s projects were a bit simpler. Rather than going for a close-up, we helped them portray what the mass ascension was like. They did a bunch of finger prints and then I used colored pencils to draw the baskets underneath.
I don’t know if Shimri and Shimei will remember going the next time we go, but I’m pretty sure Iddo will. We’re grateful that tall Uncle Martin helped her see above the crowds.