Saturday, November 21, 2009

11/21/09 Snap Circuits

Today after a very nice relaxed 3-year-old birthday party, I felt like lying down and being a slug because of a headache. But somehow I forced myself to go running, since it'd be my only opportunity all weekend (sleeping late on a Saturday morning doesn't count as an "opportunity"). I'm always glad I did; my headache mostly went away and even though it was a short chilly run, my mind was clear and my body strong.

Another mom I was chatting with at the party has a much harder time leaving her (two) kids alone with her husband than I do. My husband, I'm grateful to say, can certainly deal with all three alone together, despite the massive effort involved.

It was a very sweet scene to come home to. Especially seeing Julian up out of bed -- he got a temperature this morning and was in bed all day with 102, but it broke late this afternoon, and he seems fine now.

Gabriel spent the whole day playing with his Snap Circuits. He is far, far more tolerant of Katrina playing with them than Julian, and was so sweetly letting her put pieces on the grid and snapping them together. She loved this and stayed focused with him on this for a long, long time.

(I took this picture to show on her graduation day from electrical engineering school, to commemorate how it all started.)

Gabriel describes his "tone generator" and gives Katrina a little snapping job to do. Hard to hear it, but he informs her that if there had been a battery in place, she'd have made a short. I have no idea if that's true or not.

Dave let him on the computer, and he found the Web site for Elenco, the company that makes the Snap Circuits. Gabriel thought there was a section where people can post their own Snap Circuit designs, and then he thought he posted his own design too. In fact, I think he just navigated to the Feedback section, where he submitted this comment (I walked in just as he was trying to understand "Form Submitted" -- apparently he submitted it several times in an attempt to send it):
"I made a real squeaker! Turn the swich on, you hear a high-piched sound and an LED lights up with it. Tap the whistle chip and the sound changes."

I have to say, I was really surprised at that writing. Maybe because his handwriting is so, so, SO bad I can't ever read what he's writing and it looks like the work of a 4-year-old, or maybe because this is of his own volition and not a school assignment.

He made a squeaker all right; unfortunately the moment he tests his inventions his hearing-sensitive mother bellows, "TURN THAT &$@!$&% THING **OFF**!!" No doubt he'll remember that on his graduation day from electrical engineering school.


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