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To visit Princeton University.
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To learn the native language of everywhere he visits.
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To visit the local historical sites of his host families.
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Travelog for: Einstein Pig

Omaha, NE, USA - 7th June 2011

By: NightoCups

Greetings Everyone! Einstein Pig here making my first Travelog update. I was super excited to hear that I'd be joining my sister Honey the Hippo in world travels. So far today I read a book about Michigan and took a picture with all my favorite books. It was hard to narrow it down to which would be in the picture with me, but I think we managed to get all the important ones in. Later today I may be preparing for my first voyage. Until next time fellow TVs!
~Einstein Pig

* Posted Jun 7, 2011, 12:55 pm [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page


In transit, USA - 18th June 2011

By: NightoCups

Hurray! My sister Honey the Hippo and I are on our first voyages! I'm off to Michigan to visit Kessalia. I can't wait to learn lots of fun things from her and tell you all about them!

* Posted Jun 18, 2011, 6:55 pm [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page


Grand Haven, MI, USA - 20th June 2011

By: kessalia

Hello!  I had arrived in Michigan!  And in honor of my visit Me took all of us toys to a place that we could learn new things! 

We went to the P.J. Hoffmaster State Park in Muskegon, Michigan.  It has amazing sand dunes that are very complex!  We visited the Nature Center to learn as much as we could.

The view out of the back windows, facing the dunes, was quite interesting!  With me are [Cilly, Vanilla, and Riin and Eri.  This is a bird feeding station.  There was an informative sign that helped us to identify the visitors.  I learned the difference between a gray and red squirrel and saw a number of frogs.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/hoffmaster/DSCF0993.jpg

This is a greatly enlarged model of a typical quartz sand grain found on the beach.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/hoffmaster/DSCF0973.jpg

I am reading about dune research.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/hoffmaster/DSCF0974.jpg

This is a microscope showing sand grains.  It was hard for someone my size to get a good view though.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/hoffmaster/DSCF0972.jpg

This is a map of locations of dune complexes in the Great Lakes Region.  I found were we are!

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/hoffmaster/DSCF0975.jpg

There were several dioramas depicting dune wildlife in teh different zones.  Did you know that there are four distinct zones in a dune system?

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/hoffmaster/DSCF0976.jpg

AHH!  I am very happy to learn that this is not actual size!  It is an Ant Lion, a common insect on the beaches.  They are much smaller than me in reality.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/hoffmaster/DSCF0977.jpg

In another room we learned more about the wildlife.  These are displayed birds that were preserved for learning and research.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/hoffmaster/DSCF0985.jpg

I inspected this Cooper's Hawk specimen up close.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/hoffmaster/DSCF0986.jpg

This is an Eastern Garter Snake.  He has been living here for many years, Mel remembers him from when she worked here in her college days.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/hoffmaster/DSCF0987.jpg

I also saw some local Bluegill fish in a tank.  They did not have much to say.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/hoffmaster/DSCF0988.jpg

The gift shop had many books to teach us more!  I wanted to get one of each but Mel bought me a few postcards instead, because they were cheaper.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/hoffmaster/DSCF0996.jpg

We then went for a short walk int the dunes themselves.  There we say more squirrels and a chipmunk and several birds.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/hoffmaster/DSCF1001.jpg

We did not go far today, Mel says perhaps later we will take one of the longer, less traveled trails.  I think I would like that.
We did read more about the dune in front of us, named Mt Baldy.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/hoffmaster/DSCF1004.jpg

Then Mel collected us to leave, but Googly Eyes decided to stay.  He was determined to travel on his own, and he chose this spot to wait for his next host, despite Mel urging him to come with her.  I wish him luck.

I am settling in well, Mel had promised me a browse through some of her geology textbooks while I wait for our next adventure.  I miss you and my siblings but I will continue to write! 

* Posted Jun 21, 2011, 3:28 am [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page


Grand Haven, MI, USA - 4th July 2011

By: kessalia

Hello mum!  It was fun to spend Independence Day in America!  We had an eventful day, though not many photos to show for it.  Mel and her mom helped to thwart a shoplifter and called 911 for someones lost camping gear blocking the highway, though! *L*

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1029.jpg

We only went downtown with the tourists to take her nephew Tyler some dinner, and there ere SO many people in town for the fireworks.  Mel's migraine and lack of love for tourists have us staying home to watch from here, though.  We don't mind much, we found more fun way to celebrate!  It started when Mel realized we had two Brits, and two Americans visiting, and a German too... She couldn't resist....

We toyvoyagers present to you all the story of the American Revolution (as Mel remembers it from school)!!!

At first, the people in what would be America were mostly British and fine with that.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1036.jpg

But over time, the distance and other problems made the colonists more and more upset with the British ruling them, and the Army had to keep order more and more often.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1038.jpg

Finally the colonist just felt SO misunderstood and put-upon that they decided they could take care of their own people better, and they told Britain to go away and leave them alone!  This happened around the Fourth of July, which is why that day was picked for the holiday. 

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1039.jpg

Well, the British king didn't like that at all, so he sent more Army over to keep the noisy colonists in line and protect the loyal ones, and to protect his interests there.  So there were two sides, and the advantages went back and forth a bit.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1040.jpg

The British were spending a lot to fight that far from home, and the war didn't end nearly as quickly and neatly as they'd hoped, so they called in backups - Mercenaries from Germany, the Hessians! 

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1041.jpg

The British sent the Hessians after the rebel Americans, and things looked pretty bad for the colonist's independence plans!

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1043.jpg

But luckily America could pull in some back-up too, they sent men over to Europe to convince England's old foe the French to come in on their side!  (I enjoyed playing Franklin very much)

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1045.jpg

So the French and the Americans turned and won back some momentum against the English and Germans.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1047.jpg

There was still a lot of fighting and hardships on both sides and many soldiers lost, but finally the British started to lose steam, as the money and distance made things harder and harder.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1048.jpg

In the end the English king was forced to leave the rebels to themselves, at least for a while.  Most of the armies that were left were called home or sent to Canada.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1049.jpg

And the leaders of the United States were free to make their own government, for better or worse.  And they did, and today is the day they celebrate taking that stand against the king (by not working, waving flags, having picnics, and being far too loud.)

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1050.jpg

(The French mostly went home, but a lot of the Hessians stayed, and we don't blame them.)

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1051.jpg

The End!  Starring:

The English Troops!  Quentin Ducky  & Alex_Lion from the UK!
The American Troops!  Vanilla & Einstein Pig from the USA!
The Hessian!  Cilly from Germany!
The French! Uhh... they don't have names yet, they are Buzz's evil cousins or something.  But we needed more toys.  :)  From Mel's room!

It is getting dark, so we will probably go out on the porch soon and see the big fireworks!  Happy 4th everyone, however you celebrate it!

* Posted Jul 5, 2011, 2:45 am [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page


Grand Haven, MI, USA - 15th July 2011

By: kessalia

We went to the beach again, this time on a lovely summer evening.  We wanted to go after most of the tourists were gone, and also wait until mom got off work.  We picked up Mel's niece Madison and we got there just as it started to rain!  It was funny, because the sun was still out, but we didn't let it scare us off, it only lasted a few minutes and left a gorgeous rainbow for us to enjoy until after the sun went down.  Did you know that rainbows are sunlight refracted through water droplets in the air?  Mel and I both watched very closely as the sun went down hoping to see a rare red rainbow, but the bow faded before the sun got red enough. 

I'm not sure if you can see it in this photo of not.  It is above the man in the blue hat.  This was my first trip to the beach though, so I was enjoying looking around.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1151.jpg

We sat on the beach enjoying the sunset while everyone else went swimming.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1144.jpg

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/tb2.jpg

When they were done and drying off, we got to play with Madison for a little while!  Look at all of those seagulls in the background!  Some kids were having fun running at them and making them all fly. 

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/tb3.jpg

* Posted Jul 15, 2011, 9:06 pm Last edited Jul 15, 2011, 9:10 pm by kessalia [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page


Battle Creek, MI, USA - 24th July 2011

By: kessalia

Hello mom!  It is hot here!  Is it hot there?  Mel had some time off work, and we had a lot of fun!  She is still trying to catch up.  :rolleyes:

On Sunday, we took Mel's niece Madison and her cousin Krista down to Battle Creek (where all of the breakfast cereal comes from, we saw the factories for Kellogg and Post cereals on our drive!) for the Silver Leaf Renn Faire!  Madison had gone before, but it the first trip for Krista and for us!

Quentin Ducky and Alex_Lion posed with the girls and these funny performers from a magic show!  Then we went to see a funny Pirate show.  They did some tricks too!

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1186.jpg

Then we posed with what we THOUGHT was a brave knight, but it was just some armor!  The knight must have decided it was too hot and left it there!  Do you see me on the knight's arm?

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1187a.jpg

Then we danced to a Celtic group, The Rogues!  They were very good, but we got tired long before the girls did! 

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1205_edited-1.jpg

All the way home we all played while Mel drove.  It was a fun fun day! 

* Posted Aug 1, 2011, 7:01 pm [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page


Bloomfield Hills, MI, USA - 26th July 2011

By: kessalia

Hello Mom!  We are still trying to catch up with our travellogs!  After Mel spent the weekend with Madison, she spent the next two days with her nephew Tyler.  He wanted to go to the Detroit area to practice in some indoor skate parks.  Mel's bargain was she would take him if he went to a museum with her.

We picked Tyler up, had a good dinner, and a good night's sleep.  The next day was the museum, which was more to my liking than the skate park, for sure!
We started with a t-rex!  :D

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1233.jpg

I climbed up, though everyone else was too afraid.  I know how fossils work, though.  I knew I was in no danger.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1234.jpg

There was a whole hall full of dinosaurs and other prehistoric animals!

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1239.jpg

This is a model of a mastadon that was found right near where we were standing!

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1240.jpg


We all settled in to watch a show in the planetarium about the wonders of the world.  I made sure I got a good seat! I learned also about some of the wonders of the universe.  There ere many interesting photos f globular clusters, nebulae, and galaxies.  Even a black hole!

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1242.jpg

Later after the show we watched this big globe go around and and talked about all of the placed we'd been and were all we wanted to still go.  I said "Everywhere!"

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1244.jpg

In another part of the museum, we learned about the native cultures of North America.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1246.jpg

I think they were very talented artists, I learned a lot!

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1250.jpg

Here I am learning about how water molecules link together when they freeze.  It explains to me why ice is a hexagonal crystal.  Did you know that ice is technically a mineral?  Because it is non-organic and has a crystal structure?

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/4july/DSCF1254.jpg

* Posted Aug 6, 2011, 10:17 pm [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page


Grand Haven, MI, USA - 14th August 2011

By: kessalia

Hello Mum!  This weekend Grand Haven hosted the Michigan Pirate Festival!  Mel dressed up and took us all!  :D

Saturday the highlight was the kids parade and costume contest!  Mel and Madison were in it.  Weren't the kids all so cute?  Mel took second place for adults - I will tell you a secret though, there were only three ladies competing. ;)

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/august/DSCF1291.jpg

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/august/DSCF1283.jpg

We sat and watched some shows!  These ladies danced with fire!  :o  I would never do that!

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/august/DSCF1299.jpg

There were pirates and amazing costumes everywhere!

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/august/DSCF1309.jpg

Mel chatted with friends and shopped, she bought Raven a new eye patch since he lost his Saturday, and some yummy scurvy-fighting rootbeer!  These belly dancers were performing as we left.  They were very pretty!

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/august/DSCF1315.jpg

The festival was hosted by the local library.  The library was a nice place to rest after the fun of the festival, while the kids were looking for books.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/august/DSCF1294.jpg

Mel says summer is almost over here in Michigan, but there is still plenty of fun things for us to do.  Yippee! :)

* Posted Aug 14, 2011, 10:29 pm [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page


Jackson, MI, USA - 28th August 2011

By: kessalia

Hello!  This weekend Mel used her one day off to take us to a Civil War muster in Jackson, Michigan!  The American Civil War started 150 years ago. 

We wandered through some shops which had historical costume supplies and other interesting things.  The girls were looking at hoop skirts and hats, but us boys thought that the uniforms and weapons were more interesting!

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/august/DSCF1349.jpg

The big event of the day was a reenactment of the Battle of Bethel Church which happened in Virginia in June of 1861. 

The Union troops lined up right in front of us! 

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/august/DSCF1368.jpg

Then they marched over the hill to attack the southern troops.  There were canons also, that were really loud.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/august/DSCF1377.jpg

We missed a lot of the battle because it happened over that hill, but all of the good seats were taken.  :(

The Union troops were attacking a fortified Rebel position with half as many men.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/august/DSCF1383.jpg

Despite having the advantage of numbers, the Union ended up having to retreat, mostly because of confusion between units, it seems.  At one point in the real battle, some of the Union troops were shooting at each other!

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/august/DSCF1394.jpg

Here the Union is trying to regroup for one last charge, but it didn't succeed and they retreated all the way back to the city. The Rebels only lost one soldier in the fight.

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/august/DSCF1401.jpg

On the way out, Mel walked over to another part of the park to see if the big fountain was running, for BineHH, but it wasn't.  :(  But we did find a 9-11 memorial with an actual part of one of the World Trade Center buildings.  We decided it would be a good place for group shot!

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/august/DSCF1403.jpg

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/august/DSCF1404.jpg

* Posted Aug 29, 2011, 5:11 pm [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page


Grand Haven, MI, USA - 12th September 2011

By: kessalia

Since BineHH had to leave the next day, Mel took us all downtown to see the World's Largest Musical Fountain!  It was across the river from where we sat and was still as tall at the whole hillside!  They played fun music and the water 'danced' to it, and the colors changed to fit the music and the dance, too!  I've never seen anything quite like it.  :D

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/august/tv3.jpg

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/august/tv4.jpg

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a214/kessalia/august/tv1.jpg

* Posted Sep 13, 2011, 2:22 am [Quote] [View just this post] Go to the top of the page


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