Friday, June 15, 2012


Dog in people bed.


People in Dog Bed.


Business as usual chez Whitlock.

Camping at Petit Jean

I took Declan camping to Petit Jean State Park last weekend with friends, Ariel and Brooke and their respective children.  It was a dad-free trip, just moms and kids, and we had a grand old time.

 These are a few of the activities we enjoyed:

Roasted S'mores
Went geocaching
Read stories
Painted pet rocks
Played in tents
Played at the playground
Played in the car
Slept in tents
Chased fireflies
Dined al fresco
Played Flashlight Treasure Hunt
Went spelunking
Went hiking
Went Swimming
Went Bug Hunting
Had a waterballoon fight
Went bike riding
Took in the Baby Animal Show at the Petit Jean Amphitheatre
Raved with Glowsticks in the forest,
and did our first Cannonball, ever.

Photographic evidence follows.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Question: What Do You Get When You Put a Chimpanzee with Anger Management Issues on Display at the Zoo?

A: The best field trip ever!

Note my awesome maternal skills kicking in:  Hang on, my injured child.  I will comfort  you as soon as I finish being doubled over with laughter.

The rest of the zoo field trip was uneventful and pleasantly free from further poo-flinging incidents. 

Feeding the Lorikeets

Hangin with the Elephant

Riding the gorilla with his buddies Gavin and Sheriff.

Recently some research was done research came out  suggesting that children stop being irrestibly adorable at age four-and-a-half, but it looks to me like this lot still has a few good months left in them: 

What a bunch of cutie-pies!

Monday, June 4, 2012

The Marshmallow Test

Now from time to time, one might get an inclination to perform random psychological tests on one's child, and why not, I say. All in the name of science. We were recently inspired to perform the so-called "Marshmallow Test" on Declan. It is an experiment developed at Stanford in the early 70's to test a child's executive function, the degree of self-control he has, which as it turned out, is a strong predictor of later life outcomes.  The test put 4 to 6 year olds in an empty room, with only a marshmallow to keep them company.  They are allowed to eat the marshmallow if they want, but they are told if they don't eat the marshmallow, they will get two marshmallows in 15 minutes.  In the original experiment, a third of the kids ate the marshmallow right away, another third delayed for some time, but ate the marshmallow before the 15 minutes were up, and the final third were able to hold off for the 15 minutes and earn the second marshmallow.  Then they followed the kids for the next 40 years (!) and were able to determine that those kids who ate the marshmallow right away were more likely to suffer from addiction, and the kids that were able to delay the gratificaiton had more social and academic success in their lives.  So since Declan was the right age, although at the very bottom of the range in the original experiment, we figured we would replicate it at home and see whether I was going to be interviewed on an episode of Intervention 20 years from now.  

We were pretty sure that Declan would be an immediate marshmallow eater.

To verify our hypothesis, we put Declan in our guest bedroom, and luckily we had already intalled a hidden video camera in there, so we could just use that.  Oh what, guests, you didn't know we were watching you?  Just kidding.  I put a Flip cam on the bureau across from the bed.   

This video is extraordinarily long (spoiler alert!) so dont feel compelled to watch it, but for Nicole there is a part about 5 minutes in that will amuse.