Monday, December 30, 2013

Starting Fresh Monday

Starting fresh Monday
I have been in a schooling stand still lately not loving what I am doing and feeling unmotivated to do anything school like. I am guessing it is has something to do with the fact that I am  31 weeks pregnant but maybe something is in the air. Some of my other homeschooling moms have been feeling the same way and they are not  pregnant.

After over a month off of school we jumped back on the schooling train. Japan style on a Bullet train!
Speaking of Bullet trains here is favorite song of mine. Don't judge!!! This song is peppy, fun and is just fun.... I am totally a mom and rock this song out in my sweet van full of kids at full blast. As I type this Falcon is singing the song right next to me while on his computer playing Skyrim.

We started our morning  with our favorite yogurt 

Whole fat plain organic yogurt
Chia seeds
Flax seeds
Coco powder
Raw honey

Then we headed to the library to get some books. We were also meeting a local astronomer there that Falcon has been in contact with to look at my telescope and figure out why it has not been magnifying well. He gave us plenty of answers and now my telescope is functional and no longer a $600 dust magnet.

As a fun treat  (I had BOGO coupons) we all went to a local coffee shop and got super yummy decaf lattes. It was the best one I have had since getting pregnant I am seriously;y going back tomorrow. I have to go back to the library anyway to pick up my books on hold that I forgot all about and it just so happens the coffee shop is just across the street

Back home at 12:00 for lunch, yummy leftovers from the Olive Garden then onto school work.

 I got the little  boys back on learning to read.

Robin  got back to her regular school work, I realized today we need to work on nouns again she seems think everything is an "idea". Robin also worked quite a bit on her Girl Scout badge work since she only has 6 ish more months left to finish out all her badges. We are working on a fun shape book all about Oranges right now for her "snacks" badge. We had fun finding Orange farms in the US and figuring out how many miles away they are from us. Oranges travel a LONG way to get to us.

Robin is also reading the American Girl Rebecca books for our homeschool book club. I invited over a friend of hers who is in that club and they worked on an art project that goes along with the books.Here is the art lesson we used.

They also wrote facts that I looked up about lady liberty on the backs of the art projects.

Falcon has been playing with power point and getting a presentation ready due next week on a founding father. He is also just finishing up Algebra 1, Oceanography and American history.

Hoping for a great productive day tomorrow, as for now this mama is going to snuggle in bed with her daughter and read Rebecca with her.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Engineering for Girls- The Marshmallow Spaghetti Experiment

So have you heard of the marshmallow spaghetti experiment?
You must watch this 7 min Ted Talks video then.
After  hearing about this from a friend of mine who had tried it during his last year as an engineering student I knew I had to try it out with some Homeschoolers to see how they did. 

Finally a perfect opportunity came up and I tried this with our Homeschooled Girl Scout Troop.

12 girls broke into 3 teams of 4.
1 team of 5 moms (I wanted to see how they sized up against the kids)

 I broke them up into ages, as I read that the youngest  kids actually always do better at this. Most moms were confused at this point why I wasn't mixing up the ages so the older kids could help the younger ones. 

Here is how they did:
There was no parental help allowed at all!
Group one 5-6 year olds:     6 inches
After a lot of sitting and talking and all the moms thinking that there was noway anything productive was going to happen at this table. They Triumphed!!

Group two: 6-8 year olds:       0 inches
There as a lot of talking going on here, and a lot of ideas but no clear way to make it happen. They had some very unique ideas that they tried at first without much success. I think the problem in this group was there was no clear leader established and not much got done. They did try to make a teepee type structure but were unable to get it to stand up. Given more time I feel this team would have gotten a structure up with a marshmallow on top. There were some very unhappy girls at this table when I said time was up.

Group 8-9 year olds       0 inches
These girls had a slow start but were full of ideas just as time was up they had a pretty tall structure but it would not stand up.

Group Moms:                 20 inches
I have no idea what their thought process was but none had done this before and this is what they had in the end. Maybe it was the extra person that made all the difference.

This was a fun experiment and I enjoyed hearing all the thought processes going on, I am hoping to bring more team skill building activities into our monthly meetings to get these girls to think outside the box more.

Thank you Ray for telling me about this.

If you are interested in Engineering for girls I just came across this company and it  is now  on my daughters wish list for Christmas. 
Looking for more? Click link below.

      100 Awesome Engineering Projects for Kids

I am hoping to do more of these with my kids possibly our Girls Scouts as well.

Happy Homeschooling!

Friday, December 6, 2013

Playing catch up.

Schooling? What is that? Oh that's the thing I said I would do this year. I am a bit of an over achiever and when I say we haven't really done schooling we have just very light lately. I am 28 weeks pregnant ,I think. It's baby #5 so until labor starts I really don't think to much of what week I am and what the baby is doing like I did with #1. I seem to have a harder time schooling when preggo than when baby is a new born. I am just so tired when I am pregnant and big and uncomfortable so as soon as baby pops out ( I wish) I throw him/her in my moby wrap and am ready to seize the day.

So what have we done?
Well we started the little house in the Woods series all the kids are enjoying that. We got some venison from our neighbors so we can eat that just like they did in the books. We also met up with some friends for a playdate and visited a little cabin just like the one we are reading about. ( Sorry no pics)

We chopped down our Christmas tree, okay we used a saw but chopping sounds so much better!
Then we went to our favorite sub place to eat with our tree strapped to our handy dandy minivan. We were having fun with Papabird while we waited.
Our Elf of a Shelf brought us some fun things to do, she brought us a set of 10 puzzles that we need to finish before Christmas eve. So we have been enjoying a lot of family time putting those together.
We went to a homeschool Christmas party that was wheat free, so that was fun that my kids were allowed to eat everything they saw.

Falcon and I just finished reading Divergent  here is the trailer. I need to go get the next book in the series from the library today, but feeling unmotivated.
We saw Catching Fire at the theater, it was AMAZING!

Speaking of Falcon  he left this morning for Chicago with his Boyscout troop. I am feeling quite uneasy about him being so far away from home and hoping he doesn't starve while he is there. I did send him with lots of wheat free snacks but who knows if he will eat them and will want to eat junk like the rest of the kids. I just hope he doesn't eat too much wheat and make himself sick.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Short and Sweet.

I have really been  having a hard  time sitting and composing blog posts since discovering I am pregnant. I compose them all day in my head they just never make it to my blog.

So the hens finally started laying, we are only getting 1-2 eggs a day right now and no Easter egger eggs yet.
Care to guess which 3 eggs came from our chickens and which 3 came from our farmers chickens? I am overly excited to say that our chickens are laying the healthier dark orange yolk eggs.

Speaking of chickens one of our lovely dogs got  a hold of one of our barred Rocks and ate the comb off the top of her head, good thing it wasn't the poor hens head. She is healing well.

I am loving this cooler weather we are having ( some might call it downright cold) but not I! 

So we hung out in the arctic exhibit at a nearby zoo, these animals agree with me and how nice it is.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Terrible 2's? More like terrible twosome.

I should have known today was not going to be a great day when a black bird flew into my windshield on the express way causing my heart to stop and almost an accident as well. How is the bird you ask? Well probably pretty dead I was going 70mph.

My 2 boys Duck (age 5) and Owl (age 4) have been terrors lately doing things my other 2 kids never did.After dinner today I sent them outside to play while I folded laundry in the living room.

There was a lot of giggling outside and screaming too which is never a good combo. I thought about getting up to look but I was just too tired from a day of yelling at these boys, at least they are outside I thought.  They are probably throwing dirt at one another. ( I wish) Duck came to the door teary eyed  with human feces all over his hands and said,
" I am sorry mom I had an accident"
I am mad but feeling bad for him at this moment because he has diarrhea. So I reply kind of calmly,
"How did the poop get on your hands then? Did you get it on them on purpose and chase your brother?
" Uh.......Yes"

So I take him is the house and get him and his clothes all clean, while I am doing this my 2 older kids come in and give me more pieces of this poop puzzle that I was not aware of. Evidently Duck had reached into his pants and threw poop all over his younger brother.
 So now Owl is covered in  human feces.


Luckily Falcon cleaned him up for me as best he could with hose water outside while I was cleaning up his brother inside.

There was poop all over the door knobs, poop on toys, poop on the garage. At least this is all outside not on my curtains, on my couch, on my carpet etc... ( silver lining).

I am so very thankful that I did not know right away what  Duck did or I may have just lost it right then and there in the doorway of my house. Hearing about what happened  in stages was much easier to deal with I stayed  pretty calm (more so than I did last week when the boys had a war with the white school glue and covered each other and the dining room in it!)

Who ever said having  2 kids close is age of the same sex is great ....they were WRONG.  Must have been the one that said childbirth doesn't hurt! Instead of 1 kid getting into trouble I have 2 always conspiring together and causing such havoc.

In the last 2 weeks my boys have:

1. Got into the chicken run and romped around in the coop in all the chicken poop covered straw.

2.Let the chickens free when the dogs were out ( our 2 large dogs want to eat the chickens) feathers were everywhere but no one was killed!

3. Had a war with white glue and squirted each other and the dining room in.

4. Pulled up all my gardening stones and threw them all over the yard.

5. Ripped up all Robin's milkweed that we had planted to help save the monarch's.

6. Made mud in the outside dog water and threw it at the house.

I know that I will look back at these times and laugh and miss them dearly. My boys are now all clean and tucked snugly into their beds ( maybe). They may actually be wandering about the house causing more boy trouble. As I kissed Duck and hugged him I said to him ,"you know mama still loves you even when you make me mad and do bad things" his eyes got wide and  he replied " You do?" "Yes dear one I do!"

I am planning on making some clean mud with the boys in the next week maybe doing this will curb their need to creates  other messes. Hopefully my neighbor will let me use her microwave for this since our tree-hugging family does not own one.

I also need to make a batch of this fall playdoh 

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Back on track and chugging along.......

 School and stuff...
Is working on his highschool courses but this week he did not get very far. He got poison ivy all over his face doing work at Papabirds office. It was so bad his face was super swollen and his eyes were almost swollen shut. He still looks bad but its getting a bit better his eyes are halfway open now.

Is working on the 3 types of rock, today we made an edible Igneous rock.

The littles 
Are both working on Kindergarten this year and they have been loving reading eggs so far,
We were working on letter sounds in the driveway, they had to hop to the correct letter sound. They were also working on the words am, at, and I. Farther down in the driveway they working on grouping things in the number I had written down.

Our Travels this week...
Have you tried it? Well I have known about it for awhile but never gave it a go until this week. So armed with my GPS we headed out to 3 locations, the first 2 were a bust and we could not find them. We did however find lots of litter, dog poop and poison ivy, ICK! Third time is the charm through we finally found one at our 3rd location. After dinner Falcon was chomping at the bit to head back out so Papabird watched the littles and we headed out on our bikes to two locations about a mile away.

We found both 
 This was a nano, the log book was in the green canister and the was hidden in a street lamp.
Hidden in a tree.

The Orchard
We  headed to the orchard to pick peaches, apples and went through a corn maze

took us about 25 min. to find our way out.

In my life...
Still feeling pretty sick but almost  at my 2nd trimester so hopefully relief is in sight. 

I went to a friends house and learned how to make my own yogurt and lacto fermented cabbage. I am so excited to start these on my own next week.

Friday, July 19, 2013

What summer?

Busy and crazy, that's how I roll.....

Highlights of our summer so far.
1.  We went to Chicago  for USAT nationals. Falcon's hard work and training paid off he fought the best in the NATION and came out on top. He won BRONZE in sparring and made it to the semi finals in forms. I couldn't be more proud

2. While in Chicago we went to the American girl store and Robin got Cecile's ears pierced.

3. My cranky 97 year old neighbor has been getting sicker and very confused never even knowing who she is and what  is going on  and her family refuses to put her in a home. I am worried about her safety and have called the ambulance  for her but she is always rude and demanding. Today I told  her that if she cannot speak to myself or my children nicely then I will no longer talk to her or help her.

4.We had large branch fall off of our very large tree and take out our power and smash up the garage a bit, thankfully it missed the chicken coop.

5. Speaking of chickens, Papabird  got the chicken coop built, we still need to add the nesting boxes and a few other things but it is fully functional.

6. The Mastiff got a hold of  one of the chickens, she didn't hurt it before Falcon found out but there were feathers all over the yard.

7. I am expecting a new little bird and  he/she should hatch at the beginning of March. This was a big surprise to us and not what we expected.

8. I helped organize and host a carnival fundraiser for my friend who needs a new set of lungs due to a very rare lung disease which there is no known cause or cure. We raised  $2470 not what I expected but any profit is better than no profit.

9. A dead body was found at our local library. It sounded much worse on the news, apparently the guy died of natural causes in the restroom and was found in the morning the next day. They don't check the bathrooms at night?

10. We have been inside more this summer than any other due to RAIN, RAIN, RAIN which has lead to a lot of mosquito breeding.

11. Robin got a tick on her head, that caused us to go to the ER after 3 weeks it still looks nasty but not infected. They sent us back home and we continued to treat with lavender oil and colloidal silver.

12.Robin only finished 1/2 the Girl Scout projects we were planning on doing for the state fair.  We are excited to see how we do  judging will be at the end of July. We planned on going down but now Papabird will be in Brazil during that time and I don't think I have the stamina to drive 6 hours round trip and haul all 4 kids through the fair by myself while dealing with morning sickness.

Although summer is my least favorite season we are usually always outside doing messy fun outdoor projects. So far this year between my friends fundraiser, Falcons extra training for USAT,  morning sickness, all the rain, then extreme heat I feel we have done nothing fun.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

My Own Blog Has Inspired Me!

My own blog inspired me this week....

One evening when 2 of my kids were at grandmas, my other 2 were fast asleep and Papabird was working late I happened to browse through the last few years of my blog posts. You know what I discovered? That I was doing some really neat stuff and my schooling as of late has gotten a bit dry and boring. Good thing my kids are off this week now I have time to re evaluate what I am doing.

Academically my kids are doing great but we really haven't done a lot of hands on fun unit studies in awhile.

Even though the kids were on break this week  I still managed to sneak in some education. Falcon went out to gather worms and bugs for the chicks Tuesday morning. It had just rained so I thought he would find worms a plenty but what he found was a HUGE grub! Seriously this thing was BIG and so gross it gave me  goose bumps.

Falcon picked it up  to place in the brooder and it bit him! EEK! He was a man about it though! The chicks pecked it for awhile then  one of the Barred Rock chicks ( they always get the bugs we put in there) grabbed it and started running through the cage with it while all the other birds are squawking and chasing her. Finally she  swallowed it whole. I seriously could not believe my eyes. My 13 day old chick who is barely the size of my hand ate this HUGE grub whole. So I threw in some extra chick grit in there, she will probably need it!

After the chick ate the grub we started watching videos on youtube about grubs and chickens eating grubs.

What we learned:
1.Chickens love grubs
2. People can eat them  and that they are high in protein.
               - you should cut the head off before you eat them so they don't bite you.
               - They are juicy but do not taste too bad for a bug
               - They taste better cooked!
No we did not try this ourselves but I did offer to let the children try a grub, no takers though! We learned this on our many youtube videos.
3. The grub we found was the larvae stage of a June bug.

Timon and Pumba say they are "Slimy, yet Satisfying!"

Of course we had to watch Lion King this week  after the grub thing. I seriously cry every time Simba's Dad dies. How awful that would be for a child to see, then believe it was his fault! I hate that part!

Our chicks are getting so big so fast. This is my favorite chicks I think she is so pretty but she is the least friendly of them all. The Barred rocks are the sweetest by far, they will fall asleep while you are holding them.

1980's flashback....
I have been watching Punky Brewster with my daughter all week. I Loved that show as a child. I even wrote a letter to the President to put in back on the air when it was cancelled. My mom later admitted that she never sent it.... Shesh!
The actress who played Punky wrote a book on parenting I am reading it now, it okay if I had not loved this actress as a child I would have stopped reading it by now. It's much more of a first time mom intro to parenting book, but there are some funny stories. I am enjoying reading about her childhood though.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Say NO to GMO.....or get Cancer!

After 2 weeks in Europe  Papabird and returned safely  back to our nest. He brought home the best gift eve, Heirloom seeds that have been passed down 4 generations from one of our software developers in Bulgaria  (a GMO free country). Unfortunately, it's too late in the season here to plant most of these plants from seeds without germinating them first. It just doesn't stay warm long enough here without starting  these particular seeds indoors 6 weeks ahead. I defiantly  do not  want to waste any seeds this year and try but fail, well maybe I could try just  a few  seeds.

Papabird was sure that he was going to get stopped going through customs with seeds but they never batted an eye. He didn't list that as an item he was leaving the country with though, he was supposed too!
Monsanto seems to have their hand in everything so it's no wonder he was worried about carrying non GMO seeds from a GMO free country into our country.

Speaking of GMO and Monsanto........
Our family went to a local March Against Monsanto rally.
I loved this costume of a Monsanto farmer, she was a nice lady.
Here I am with one baby bird on my back and  another next to me whining and wanting to leave. My other 2 were off holding signs and shouting at cars.
A group of other fellow protesters.

Falcom had to miss sparring class to go to this but given the choice he wanted to do this instead. He was very vocal and passionate about what he was doing out there, he really got the crowd going. I may have a little tree hugging activist on my hands!
I had actually watched  this movie the day before we marched, great histocial fiction.( Nothing to do with seeds or Monsanto though!)
Here is a paper Falcon just wrote about GMO's
GMOs: The Perfect Poison
     Genetically Modified Organisms (or GMOs for short) are, as you may have figured organisms that are modified genetically. A GMO can be anything that has been genetically altered by human hands. Today almost all the conventional meat, fruits, vegetables, and even farm-raised fish are GMOs. GMOs are in almost everything you eat. But the question is, are GMOs good for us?
            Genetically modified crops and livestock were initially introduced to US grocery stores around 1973, and even after 39+years still going strong. The reason GMOs are so widespread is because of convenience. The world today is all about speed, for instance fifty years ago you didn’t have TV dinners or fast food places. Fifty years ago you would be cooking at home following recipes passed down from generation, to generation. Not throwing your cheap pre-packaged dinner in the microwave like a lot of us do today.
              With GMOs farmers can make plants easier to harvest by inserting genes for faster plant growth. This way they have made animal and plant products cheaper and easier to manage. With genetic engineering (genetic engineering is the same thing as genetically modifying) conventional farmers have created pest resistant plants that kill the bugs that eat them. Conventional farmers have also modified crops to take up less space and to be easier to harvest.
            Most GMO products have only a fraction of the nutrition that non GMO products have. Not to mention the devastating effects that seemingly innocent GMOs cause to the environment. Even though GMO corn is already pumped with chemicals to keep the bugs away, a lot of times farmers will just spray even more of the chemicals onto the ground just to be sure that the pests don’t come back. On top of that, when farmers spray to much chemical onto their crops they create “super-bugs”. In the animal kingdom, only the strongest survive, but in this case it is the most chemical-resistant bug that survives the farmers incessant chemical spraying. These “super-bugs” more often than not drive conventional farmers to spray even more toxic pesticides on their crops. GMO pollen is also now becoming more and more of an issue, because the GMO pollen that has been modified is fertilizing other plants in nearby fields or meadows. making new species randomly. Gene pollution can not be cleaned up.
            GMO corn is now so toxic for you it is now called by some people “Round Up ready corn.” (For those of you that don’t know Round Up is a highly toxic weed killer).Round Up ready corn is a GMO that is immune to the harsh chemicals used in Round Up. In most cases farmers quite literally spray Round Up on their corn. Dr. Don Huber did a study on GMOs that revealed that .97 ppm formaldehyde is toxic if ingested by animals,  states “GMO corn contains 200 times more formaldehyde than this safety threshold.” Formaldehyde is the chemical that is inserted into loved ones when they die so they don’t start to decompose right away. Guess what the number one side-effect of GMO foods is? CANCER. Over 37 people have died and over 1000 people handicapped from GMO-like side-effects.

            Every meal you and others purchase are votes, and you get to vote three meals a day on how you want food in the future to be like. If you eat McDonald’s  or TV dinners all the time then you are casting you vote for GMOs, and processed junk. If you eat fresh, healthy, organic produce all the time, then you are casting your vote against GMOs and for organic wholesome food. Now the question is, what will you eat?

Not a final draft yet, but wanted to include it in this post anyhow.

Speaking of seeds....
We live in the city with a HUGE oak  in a back yard the size of a postage stamp. okay so  I am exaggerating a bit here. It is a small city back yard though. I would grow  fruits and veggies back there but my oak tree and 2 large dogs will not permit either of those things from happening. So my Grandfather- in -law has offered up some space in his yard for us to farm on. This is a great opportunity for us because he has been growing his own small farm ( enough to sustain his family) for over 30 years. We  are excited to learn from all he knows while spending a lot of time out there working on our garden and helping with his.They have a complete canning kitchen in their garage that I am free to use as well. Now If I can just convince him to grow organic and heirloom varieties.
Falcon planting some melons. So far in the ground we have:
4 varieties of watermelon
Cherry tomatoes
Plum tomatoes
Purple Tomitillos ( I don't even know what they are, the description sounded good)
Leaf lettuce
Mammoth sunflowers

We have a ton more to plant but ran out of room. We will need to create more space.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Urban Chickens and SAT's

We are now officially URBAN FARMERS  ( still without a coop built though!)

We picked up our day old chicks this week from the post office. As soon as we opened the doors you could hear those little peepers cheeping away.  They had them sitting on the front counter waiting for us.
                              Getting them  out of the box and dipping  their tiny beaks in the water.
 The kids are loving watching them, but a little mad they can't hold them all day.

This one is my favorite, she looked a little sick when we first took her out of the box but she seems fine now.

We now have 8 chickens!
3 Buff Orpingtons
3 Barred Rocks
and 2 Easter Eggers.

Whats cooking?
Chicken! It's funny because the day we got our chicks I had already planned chicken for dinner. It felt kind of weird to be eating and enjoying my succulent bird while just below us in the basement  we have the cutest little baby chicks ever! It didn't seems to phase the kids though ( just me) they said it was the best chicken ever! Ha!, I have wanted to make cookies all week but just to lazy to do it ( I guess it's a good thing!)

This kids all know that in 2 years  when egg production slows we will be eating our chickens and getting a new set!

Oh ya that, Falcon took his assessment to complete 8th grade so we will be starting  9th grade this summer. I got all sorts of SAT and PSAT stuff to start  next week.
 I LOVE this book, I have been reading through it and learning new words. The funny cartoons really  help you remember what they mean. Everyone needs one of these.
I also came across Kaplan  score  raising novels, those are great too!

Question I have....
So those that have homeschooled through the high school years how do you do transcripts for college entry?

A photo to share..
My house smells of lovely lilacs!

Well this is the short version of what whet on this week, blogger is giving me a hard time tonight and I am just  too tuckered out from a week  long of being a single mom.   Papabird is off in Europe, for the next 2 weeks and I feel a sore throat coming on, so I hear the couch calling my name as I type.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Turkey Vultures and Eastern Screech Owl's in the City!

Warm spring afternoons with the sun on my face, the birds chirping, Dogwood trees blooming, bees a buzzing and the kids playing outside that's how blissfully wonderful. my week was.

We live in a middle-class urban city  so it was shocking and exciting to see both of these animals. I can only imagine that the reason we are seeing these animals is due to the increase in the rat population. They have just ripped up the sewer system  and a major highway near our house which has sent millions of rats loose in our area seeking shelter in our yards. We actually had them living in our crawl space last year and just had to have the exterminator out again to help kill them off. Is the city doing anything about it? NO they are not!

I did NOT SWEAT IN MY PANTS!.... So if you read my blog two weeks you should remember my comment about my husband thinking I peed my  pants on my bike ride. I never worked out is skinny jeans before so I thought my butt was sweating.  Flash forward to this week I went on leisurely bike ride with Robin (no sweating) and when I came back my husband says "Seriously what's going on with your butt? Go change your pants and look in the mirror." Again it looked like a wet my pants, I knew I didn't even sweat this time I only went around the block with her. After changing my pants I went out to check my bike and discovered  the  gel seat cover was leaking, mystery solved!! I have since rode my bike many times this week since throwing out  my gel seat and my pants no longer look wet when I am done. I did  NOT SWEAT or WET my pants!!  I wish I would have thought to take a picture, it was quite funny!

Falcon is finishing up his 8th grade stuff. Now I need to get together something  to get transcripts together for high school which he will be starting in June (we school year round 6 weeks on 1 week off give or  take)

He won a drawing at the library and got this collection of brand new books. He is the luckiest kids ever, I really should have him pick out some lottery numbers.

Robin is working on reading Saige the new American girl books while we study New Mexico. She has also been working very hard at  drawing pictures to illustrate  the book she wrote that we will be submitting to the state fair this summer for Girl Scouts.

Duck  and Owl have been working on the usual ABC's and 123's

We sketched Orangatangs at the zoo

Robin was so excited to find this Lego set at the store, she does Taekwondo.

and Hammock tracks

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Fun, Fun on the Urban Farm

My friend and fellow homeschool mom posted a picture of her baby ducks on facebook and I immediately sent her a message asking if we could come visit them. We are rowing the Five in a Row book  The Horses of Sweetbriar and it talks about wood ducks and geese so I thought this visit would be a great tie in (and much cheaper than a trip to the horse farm where my children would beg for lessons that we can not afford)

She lives in a city of 400,000 people, she is so blessed  to have a house at the end of a street that butts right up against a big ravine and a lot of land that is not used by anyone. She has was so excited to show me all her wild edibles that are growing around her house.

Her baby ducks, playing in the make shift pond from a plastic sled ( love it)

I just want to kiss this cute duck face!
 Digging a hole to make a makeshift pond for the ducks. Notice the boy who lives there has on rubber boots, he is prepared for farm life. My kids just have on tennis shoes.
Duck decided to get in the pond....sigh! Boys will be boys, a big mud hole is just too tempting. By the time we left my two younger boys were covered up to their chest in mud and all wet. Luckily, I  always (well almost always) have extra clothes in the car for all the kids.
 Falcon hand feeding the younger chickens
 Tyler so proud of the pullet he is holding, he kept kissing it's beak.
 The kids were so excited to get a hot fresh egg out of the nesting box as the chicken hopped out.
Robin holding her favorite looking chicken,  (her kids call her the Rare stripy.) She was so excited to learn that the Barred Rock is one of the breeds we will be getting in May.

 Her fenced in chicken run, but they free range in her yard 1/2 the day. In the milk crates she has cold hardy seeding growing in them ( GREAT idea!)

 Inside her coop

Her awesome seedlings growing in the basement.

We had so much fun at her house, I have so much to learn from her.