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Homeschool Field Trip – Seeing The President

Last Friday we took a trip to the river to explore.  Turned out cooler and the water higher than I had wanted but we got out to the sand bars and wandered around for a while.  We even got to watch a vulture eat a fish from pretty close up.

But where we really learned about current was last Monday when we went to see the President’s speech in Council Bluffs 🙂  People everywhere.

Bryon took the kids on Sunday to see if they could get tickets and they somehow managed to play cute enough to get VIP tickets.

Some background on my daughter – she is pretty president obsessed.  In school she has memorized all 44 presidents and she has learned that they hold the power in the country.  For the last few years her primary career goal was to be president.  (until last Monday that is).  She dreamed up new laws she would make all the time.  Her most important issue has become pigs.  She wants everyone in government to watch the movie Babe and make a law that people can’t kill and eat pigs.

Anyways, last Sunday night was pretty crazy.  Both kids were running around the house trying to figure out what to wear…. not much of a choice when they only have about 33 items, but it took a bit of discussing.

Here is Lily’s report on the day:

The President

We got up very early.  I stuffed toast and cereal in my mouth.  Plus I ran around brushing my hair, putting on jewelry, putting on my dress.  Finally we got in the car and rushed off to see the President.

The line was enormous.  But luckily because we had red tickets we could go farther.  We waited for a long time.  Then we went through metal detectors.  Then we waited and waited.  Then the President came.  Everyone went wild.  They screamed and whistled and waved their signs.

He talked and talked and talked.  Lots of people yelled. When I stood up I couldn’t sit down for a long time.  We ate lots of granola bars.  When it was over we drank lots of water.  The end.

She cracks me up.  Can you tell our lives revolve around what we put in our mouths 🙂

Monday morning started earlier than usual.  We left the house just after 7 so we could try and beat the rush hour traffic and get to Council Bluffs by 8.  I hate driving in new places but we survived and found a parking spot about 3 blocks away.  We showed up at the park before 8:30 only to see the line already 3 blocks long.  Thankfully we had our VIP tickets and that line was much shorter but the place was a mad house.  I am really not into politics or crowds, or crowds of people with strong political opinions.  We stood in wall to wall people for 1 hour before we were allowed into the park so we could stand in wall to wall people for another hour and a half.  … there is a reason I like living on the edge of city limits.

Anyway, through it all, we got to see the President of the United States!  Pretty close up too!

This isn’t a political post. I don’t know who to vote for yet.  But on the political side here is what I learned:

  1. There is a lot of hate between political parties… don’t know if anyone else out that day was an undecided voter but me (and I sure didn’t admit it).  The corner across from the park was covered with people picketing for the other political party.  My kids heard lots of bad language based on the back and forth.
  2. President Obama is a good speaker and comes across as a really nice guy. I would invite him over for dinner 🙂
  3. I saw no one in the audience there for the quote “Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country” — JFK (I think one of the great American Presidential quotes) The very strong feeling in the audience was the exact opposite.

oh, and it cured Lily of wanting to be the president when she grows up. Too many people following you around 🙂  Here is a look at his bus.  After the bus the motorcade kept coming forever!

(if you are reading RSS or on currents join us in the comments).  I love your comments but any negative comments will be removed.  I know politics is a heated subject for many people but this isn’t the post or the blog to start throwing hate 🙂

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  1. What a wonderful opportunity for the kids. I don’t care what political party you are affiliated with everyone should have respect for the standing president. I was never a fan of our last president and my kids heard my reasons why, but I never made personal insults about him. I’m sorry your kids had to hear people making such comments.

    • Diane, that is totally my thing. Whether you like someone or not we all love the democracy of our country and that democracy says that we will go with majority vote… even if it is close. It is kinda just the rules of the game. I want my kids to grow up with respect for who is in power and an understanding of the issues (age appropriate) to make a decision based on what they think is right.

  2. Rebekah Rebekah

    Please be sure your children know that the president does not hold the power in our country…the people do. The president and other politicians are elected for and work for the people. Unfortunately they lose sight of the fact that they work for us. The executive branch also does not have the power to make laws; that is the role of the legislative branch. Unfortunately, our current president disregards that and the people aren’t making an outrage. If the American people knew their Constitution (whose purpose is to limit government), we’d not only have an accurate view of past presidents (were some of the great ones so great after all?, worth studying) but we’d know our course clear for restoring our country for the future. A homeschooling opportunity during these campaigns is to study and learn our Constitution.

    • Rebekah, thanks. I am learning with the kids because I just became American. What I don’t get is that the delegates pick the candidates and the electoral college actually picks the president. I know they are supposed to go with what the people thing… but it seems hard to explain or understand. We are going to do a bunch more studying this fall 🙂

  3. Donna Oliphint Donna Oliphint

    My only comment has to do with deciding how to vote:
    Line up the desires of the candidate with the Bible. The one who lines up closest is the one who gets your vote. It would also be good to look into candidates’ background–who they associated with, how they were raised, what they have accomplished, etc.
    This one should be pretty easy.

    • Donna, I have wanted to find none biased information. It frustrates me when there is so much bias information out there and everyone is just calling out the others faults. …oh, and also the vague ideas of what they are going to do. I am so much more concrete than that. I am not sure how much I want to post on this election my blog but I do want to study it closer. Thanks for your comment 🙂

      • Donna Oliphint Donna Oliphint

        Sometimes you have to watch both sides and ask for wisdom to know the truth. To get more details on what the candidates want to accomplish, you can usually get a book that they publish outlining their plans. They can’t give many details on the “stump” due to the media. Real plans take too much time to go over in person, and the media will take one thing out of context and have a field day with it.

        • Thanks 🙂 I will have to do some research and a bunch of prayer.

  4. Raye Cage Raye Cage

    I always feel sad when I hear political parties tearing down each other but what an awesome opportunity for Ian & Lily to see the president & get a taste, up close, of the political system at work (the good & bad of it).

    Maybe Lily will change her mind and decide to run – I like her thinking about save the pigs & watching the Babe movie. If she becomes president she could set a new precedence of not having a entourage of people following her. :0)

    • Raye, she totally would 🙂 The President said in his speech that he was headed to the state fair but that secret service probably wouldn’t let him ride the bumper cars like he did last time. I understand it, and she understands too, but she was not about to have any of that limitation 🙂

  5. What a great opportunity for your kids! Heck I’d love the chance myself. Since I live in a known BLUE state no one ever comes here to speak. Fundraising sometimes but never a campaign type event. What a treat!!

    • Yeah, I don’t think Nebraska is a big state to visit either but for some reason (early voting or something) Iowa is a bigger spot. We are just lucky to be within 30 minutes of the boarder 🙂

  6. Mary Mary

    You were so close! What an experience for all of you! I commend you for your patience with the less-glamorous aspects of it. Crowds are not my thing either. Political candidates have to be very tough to endure all that, don’t they!

    • it would be a crazy life. Not only do you have to figure out how to fix the world… you have to deal with all that and the possibility someone will shoot you. Honestly with all that I am surprised so many people want the job 🙂

  7. Kim Kim

    Its nice to see that regardless of political opinions here we can all agree going to see a President speak with your children is a great eductional experience. I had the opportunity in High School to play in our high school band for President Reagan and I still remember it as a huge highlight for my High School Years.
    Elections this year is already making me sick to my stomach. My husband is extremely Conservative and loves his Fox News. We live in a very conservtive community as well. While I am a Conservative many of my friends are either Democrat or Liberal and I love each one of them dearly. Usually I love to “Ride The Fence” and hear both sides, however now its getting so heated I don’t even enjoy Facebook anymore. I am feeling so overwhelmed with all the hate and anger.
    I will Pray. I will place my vote. I will pray again that the intense feelings people are showing will mellow out…
    Good for you and your husband to take your children. It will always be a very memorable experience they will carry with them.

    • I agree facebook gets heated. Sometimes I worry more about the anger between the two sides and what people will do if they don’t ‘win’ than what the specific leader will do. Good thing God is in control 🙂

  8. Cam Cam

    Very cool. This is the things memories are made of. 🙂

    Like others have said, you guys were almost able to get a handshake! 🙂


    • almost 🙂

  9. Jan Jan

    I shared your awesome book on all of my social networking site! Thank you for the free download!

    • thank-you!! 🙂

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