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.

August 20, 2010

Visiting the Opossum's Bottom Homestead

We visited a family homestead on a coop field trip. The kids enjoyed seeing all the animals.

Look at that pig!

The farm primarily produces goats milk/cheese. Here's the babies.

They also have some Jacob sheep, a primitive, spotted wool-bearing breed that can grow up to 6 horns!

Not surprising, Mitchell found the horses. They followed him around.

August 6, 2010

Blueberry Picking and Playing With Friends

We went Blueberry Picking again last week. This was our 3rd year in a row. We've determined that 7 gallons is the right number for us. (At $5/gallon that's do-able, if not a lot of work!) After laying them out to dry we made a few blueberry treats (muffins and cobblers,) and then froze several gallons (for Mitchell to snack on and the rest of us to use in our smoothies.) After picking the blueberries we went to a nearby creek to have a picnic and play with our friends.

We came across a nest of baby birds while we were picking.