52 Brand New 2019

Oh we struggled to meet our 52 Brand New Experiences goal for the year and I've decided that this is the last year I'll be writing this sort of wrap up.  While we have enjoyed seeking out new experiences each year and will continue to do so whenever possible after six years of trying so many new things we're running out of ideas!

1.  Watched an Omni theater movie on our trip to the Boston Science Museum-- the younger two boys just could not get over the size of the screen.  It felt like we were IN the movie.

2.  The younger boys went to a laundromat for the first time ever with me when our washing machine broke in January.  It was quite a learning process for us all!

3.  We went to check out a new history museum-- The Worcester History museum. (You can read more about our trip here)

4.  Ian learned how to use an air gun to spray a nice even coat of paint on his car models.

5.  Ian learned to weld

6.  We visited the Yale Peabody Museum 

7.  We tried snowshoeing!

8.  Alec made lots of new recipes completely from scratch-- sugar cookies with royal icing, Bailey's brownies, lava cakes, fruit pie, croissants, cinnamon buns, Amish friendship bread, etc.

9. The boys built brides out of dried spaghetti, tape and glue.

10.  They built towers using just index cards.

11.  We watched this broad- winged hawk de-feather and devour a duck.  We were able to get so close!

12.  We checked out the Tomaquag Museum

13.  We went to Garden in the Woods and lots of other new hiking/nature places this year.

14.  We toured Fort Griswold

15-21   Walking the Freedom Trail in Boston and toured the Old South Meeting House, Old State House Museum, Paul Revere's House, the USS Constitution, and the Constitution Museum.

22.  We went to see Cirque De Soleil "Luzia"

23.  We hooked up our bike rack for the very first time and went biking on an actual bike trail!

24.  We learned about Permaculture gardens by touring the Mowery Gardens.

25.  We saw the Colorado Rockies! We drove from Denver, Colorado to Cheyenne, Wyoming on our first day of vacation.

26.  We explored Cheyenne, Wyoming & their "big boots"

27.  Touring Mammoth dig site and learning about archaeological digs.

28.  Jumping into a mineral hot springs at Evan's Plunge.

29.  Seeing prairie dogs, buffalo, pronghorn, and so many more animals in the wild at Custer State park!

30. Ate frozen custard at Freddy's (a totally new to us chain of restaurants)

31. We saw Mount Rushmore and tried Jefferson's famous vanilla ice cream recipe.

32 & 33. We toured a gold mine and went panning for gold; finding actual gold flakes to bring home.

34.  Exploring the Reptile Gardens in Rapid City.

35.  We saw the great plains (for days!)

36.  We drove the Needles highway; a road like no other.

37.  We saw the Badlands

38.  We toured the Omaha Zoo and Aquarium

39.  Ate at a Dairy Queen and tried their frozen blizzards.

40. We toured the Fireman's Museum

41. We toured an Amazon Fulfillment Center

42.  We toured our town checking out the ice sculptures from the Fire and Ice festival.

43.  After years of wanting to get there we finally went to Bogey's for some ice cream-- twice!

44.  We went to the oldest, continuously operating duckpin bowling alley in the Northeast- Duckpin bowl where they still reset the pins by hand!

45.  We extracted a strand of DNA from a strawberry!

46.  We participated in a CHOPPED theme crafting project through our local library.

47.  We're slowly replacing the wall to wall carpeting in the boys' rooms and they learned how to install laminate plank flooring.

48.  We learned about cells and made edible call models. 

49.  They all worked together to split wood using our wood splitter for the first time this winter.

50.  We went to see the Florence Griswold Museum; it's the first time any of us has ever been inside this art museum despite visiting their outdoor displays and gardens.

51.  Touring the Breakers at Christmas; we had toured the Breakers before but seeing it all decorated for Christmas was just amazing!

52.  Evan went to his first hockey game; he got invited to go see the Providence Bruins play and while unsure he'd like it he was willing to give it a try.

Here are some of our other "new experiences" from years past:



  1. It's always a joy to come here and read about your life with the guys!
    Blessings to you on the next 52!

  2. Wow! What a great idea! It’s a wonderful way to spend time together as a family and make sure that everyone gets some input on what you do.

    1. It definitely is. It's really opened us all up to at least trying something new; even if we end up discovering it's just not for us or something we'd ever want to do again.

  3. I love this idea!!

    I made cinnamon rolls from scratch for the first time this year (on Christmas Day, no less). It was challenging but they were delicious.

    Happy New Year!

    1. Thanks! The very first time we made cinnamon rolls from scratch was for Christmas morning as well. We just loved them so much... and then I couldn't find the same recipe!

  4. Wanted to send my comment over from when you visited me last.

    Dear Mother of three....
    Thank You for coming by and for your encouraging and fun comments.

    I am sort of like you I don't really think about pecan pie all the time,
    but when I see one I want one....Pies in general are really not my favorite
    dessert, but if I am gonna eat pie...Pecan wins out every time. lol
    That's funny you were eating pecan pie too......lol I just finished off
    the last of ours last night (sigh).....I really need to get that recipe
    cause it was really so good and not super sweet either which I think
    made it all the better.

    Hope you and your had a lovely Christmas and that you will have a
    Wonderful New Year in 2020.


    Cracker Barrel has a chocolate pecan pie too, and I love it.....

    1. Ooh, I haven't tried theirs. I'll have to keep that in mind next time we go.

  5. Also liked this post of 52 news adventures. Loved the smile on your sons face with the dairy queen
    ice cream.......lol so cute!
    That is a lot of new adventures and I can see after 6 years you might be having a hard time coming
    up with things...........but fortunately sometimes new adventures just find us, so hopefully there will
    be a lot of those in the New Year, and by this time next year you will be pleasantly surprised.


    1. I sure hope so! I have to say that having kept this blog theme going for so long I do tend to be more aware of when new adventures come our way and I'm much better at taking advantage of them when they do.

  6. It's very impressive that you were able to keep this going for 6 years! Happy New Year!

  7. Ohmygoodness, what a year you've had! Over the years, my husband and I have had the privilege of enjoying some of the same excursions you have (Boston Freedom Trail, Rushmore, Custer State Park and the general wild west highways(!!)). Even if you don't have 52 new experiences in 2020, you've had an excellent run, and what great learning experiences for your guys. Maybe in 2020 you could do just do 52 oldies but goodies to start the decade. ;) Either way, it was fun to virtually travel through your year along with you. And, btw, I was able to click right over to your Facebook page from here, no issues (following). Thanks for visiting my 2019 recap. I enjoy your slices of life. Happy New Year!

    1. Oh great thank you! I was wondering how that Facebook link was working. We will definitely keep having fun experiences and throwing in new ones whenever we can!

  8. What an amazing way to experience a year together - and so many fantastic memories made! I can't wait to see what you accomplish and experience in 2020!

  9. How cool to decide to do this and document! How did you pull this post together... post as you did each in a draft or did you sit down and do all at once?

    1. I mostly write the post as we go and save it as a draft but somewhere around November I do comb through posts from the year and fill in as needed (and check our other "52" posts to make sure there are no duplicates).

  10. That was a maxi post! Loved going through the recap. Wishing you many more adventures in 2020. Thanks for being such an inspiration!

  11. Such a cool wrap up. Visiting you from the hello monday link up. laurensparksnet


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