October 22, 2011

Wildlife in the Front Yard

You gotta love it when the nature comes to you! This picture was taken through the window of my laundry room, looking out over the front porch. I was actually standing on my treadmill as I took it.

If you look close, right below the wheel of the car, on the bricks, you can see a chipmunk.  He is so cute! His home is in the tuft of grass to the left of him. There is the rotting out root system of a tree that used to stand there long before we moved here, and I've found it impossible to fill in with dirt. When that plant grew up there, I was happy because it kind of covered the hole.

Now the little chipmunk has moved in there.  As I walk on the treadmill in the morning I watch him doing his little morning routine. Here's hoping kitty doesn't get him!

Is he not the cutest thing?!

October 20, 2011

Greek Food - Baklava

We are about to finish up the book Story of the Greeks, by H. E. Guerber, so today we made Baklava in honor of our study of Greek history.  We used a recipe from Allrecipes.com, and it turned out great! 

We had an assembly line going.

October 19, 2011

Enjoying Autumn

We are enjoying Autumn so much! The colors this year are fabulous. We have taken the opportunity to preserve a few colorful leaves for our leaf collection. Below is a picture of a Robin's nest in the Dogwood tree in our front yard.

April 26, 2011

Mitchell's Sting Ray

Mitchell is back on the boat, and day two included a nature study about Stingray! Impromptu of course!

February 12, 2011

Baby Chicks Have Arrived

Nature study indeed! The baby chicks arrived yesterday, and they are so sweet. Alli calls them "cheepers", and of course they all have names already.

February 11, 2011

Painting the Chicken Tractor

The kids painted one of the chicken tractors a couple of weeks ago. We had a warmish day, so we took advantage of it by being outside. There was paint in everyone's hair for a week!

It will be a little while before the little chicks are in it.

September 9, 2010

Spider Webs

This morning we noticed these two HUGE spider webs out our front window. They were attached to both power lines and the Dogwood tree. The dogwood is covered in berries right now and so pretty.

Mushroom Study - Spore Prints

We have continued our search for mushrooms. They are everywhere! How did we NOT see them before?

Our spore print experiment turned out great this time. Some mushrooms have white spore prints and some have brown or black, so we had to try it out on both white and black paper.
 Check out the kids' faces in this next picture! So cute!

September 7, 2010

Mushroom Study Continues

The mushrooms in the backyard have changed since last week and we are fascinated! No longer are they pretty little cones - now the cap has become broadly convex. Our spore prints from last week did not work, and now we realize that it is probably because our mushrooms were not mature enough. We are trying again. Identifying mushrooms is hard!

We love the following picture, showing the mushroom pushing it's way up through the pine needles with pine cones all around it.

We measured our mushroom and found the cap is 9 1/2 cm wide, the stem is 9 cm long, and 1 cm wide.

August 30, 2010

Mushroom Study

We meandered outside to do nature study this morning, intending to identify a tree on our property, but we were sidetracked by a mushroom. We took the opportunity to sketch or paint it in our nature notebooks, and then followed directions we found online to identify it. It will be harder than we though! We have set it out to get a "spore print" which should help us narrow it down further.