Urban Adventure with Fine Arts!

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This Memorial Day weekend, admission to the Boston Museum of Fine Arts is free. So naturally, we spent a rainy Saturday in Boston, mostly exploring this massive place.  Like most Boston day trips, our adventure began on the subway, where I was bummed because the Mister did not want to share a car with people dressed up for the Anime Boston convention.  Darn.  I really wanted to sit next to the people wearing cloaks and orange and black horns.

Anywho, back to the museum.  We visited the MFA about five years ago when first moving to Mass.  We did not see the entire museum that day, nor did we yesterday.  But we were primarily there to see the Samurai! exhibit.  Taking up the expanse of the basement, this display holds full samurai armor, including full body armor, dozens of helmets, weapons, and even some war drums.  On Saturdays, children can make their own warrior “armor.”

This exhibit left me breathless.  The suits were boldly amazing, woven with beautiful colors.  Here are some pictures taken from my cheap cell phone:

Here is my favorite helmet. The rabbit ears are for longevity.  I could so rock this helm...

Here is my favorite helmet. The rabbit ears are for longevity. I could so rock this helm…

Samurai on parade.

Samurai on parade.

See the detail in the mask?

See the detail in the mask?

Even some of the horses wore armor!

Even some of the horses wore armor!

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Awesome! Of course, the MFA website I have a link to at the top of this post has way better pictures.  When reading facts about the weapons on display, I learned that wives of samurai often defended their homes with spears tipped in curved blades while the menfolk were out fighting. Can you imagine that, ladies?  Putting the smack down and disemboweling a burglar with a spear?  If you check out these warriors on display, make sure you see the armor made for a boy, located towards the back of the exhibit.  Warning! If you go on a crowded day and venture into the samurai gift shop, they won’t let you re-enter the exhibit.  You’ll have to climb the stairs back up to the courtyard and possibly wait in line again.  Drat.

The Samurai! exhibit will be on display at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts until early August.

PS: After visiting the MFA, we ran into other Boston Anime adventurers, including Aang the Avatar and some Sailor Moon chicks.

No Basements in Tornado Alley? Here’s Why….

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In light of the tragic F-4 tornado that destroyed parts of Oklahoma yesterday, I’d like to enlighten everyone on an issue.  Every time a twister rips apart the Deep South, people around the country ask, why are there no basements to take cover in?

I am originally from Louisiana.  My childhood home is actually built about two feet off the ground.  We get heavy and frequent rainfalls.  We also sit at sea level or even below sea level in LA.  Therefore, our basements would flood with rainwater.

In New Orleans, they cannot even bury their dead.  They are stacked in beautiful mausoleums. Again due to being below sea level, the ground down there cannot house the dead. If graveyards cannot hold coffins in the ground, they certainly cannot hold basements. Other places, like Florida, sometimes have sinkholes. Again, the ground simply is not suitable to house a basement.

A reporter yesterday on CNN wonderfully clarified why parts of Oklahoma does not have basements: the rock in the ground is too difficult to dig through.  It would require blasting in order to build a proper basement. Therefore, some home owners built a “safe room” with no windows in the house for such disasters.

So, please TV media, do not blame builders, contractors, or think Southerners are lazy or stupid.  Though we have no basements, we gather in bathrooms or rooms with no windows when the black cloud spirals down from the sky.  Why? Well, the bathtub has pipes stretching deep into the ground that helps anchor us in.  Hallways are usually away from windows and clear of debris. They are a safer alternative than standing by flying glass and debris.

Although a basement is an ideal place to seek safety during a tornado, it just is not an option in some areas. I hope this article has provided answers to the continuing question.

New Baby in the New House!

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This Mother’s Day weekend, the Mister and Boy surprised me with the newest member of our family:

ImageMeet Maximilian. Or at least I think that’s how we are spelling it.  We need to decide soon, as this eight month old loves to attempt sneaking outside, so we must get him a collar.

The adjustment to his new home (and ours as we recently moved) has been relatively smooth.  The first couple of days, he often hid.  Then came the exploratory stage where he roamed and sniffed.  Whenever a cabinet door is opened, he darts in and checks it out.  He is extremely playful and often attempts jumps he cannot make. Maxim’s also a cuddle bum.

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Here, he is snuggling with my son and his girlfriend. He twitches in his sleep. He enjoys briefly pouncing on feet moving under the blankets at night before laying down next to them. His favorite toy is a shoelace from my older Chuck Taylors.

And I fell in love with him at first sight.