Family Birding for Beginners (Updated!)

This post was first published in 2012.  We’ve discovered new equipment and resources, but mostly, all of the advice remains the same.  My oldest daughter — who just turned 17 somehow — is now evaluating colleges based on whether or not she will be able to bird while she’s in school.  But it all started […]

Learning in Review 2015-16: Weeks 1 and 2 (and a pregnancy update)

I think I can finally say that yes, we have started school.  We aren’t getting to everything yet that I would like to, but as we gradually get used to the routine (and get over the dregs of our colds), we’re able to fit more into our days.  I’m feeling better, too — finally! — […]

Spring Break in Great Smoky Mountains National Park

We’ve had quite a spring so far here at our house.  After years of being mostly antibiotic-free, we were suddenly slammed with a bunch of ear and eye infections (me included) which are taking forever to clear up.   Leo (age 4) broke both bones of his left wrist last week, and the very next […]

A Homemade Calendar of Firsts

Last year at this time I was reading Laurie Bestvater’s book The Living Page and finding myself, like many others, inspired to get back into the habit of keeping notebooks.  One of the notebooks she mentioned that set off a particularly bright light bulb for me was the Calendar of Firsts. A Calendar of Firsts […]

Nature Walk Through Cypress Bottomland

Late September and October are outdoor field trip months for us.  The weather is mild and (usually) sunny and much less humid, and it seems a shame to be stuck inside.  This year, when Katydid told me she wanted to study ecology, I suggested that she incorporate a project that would involve heading out into […]

The End of June

The last half of June was busy! It wrapped up in a cold for almost everyone, but the kids got to do some interesting things.  June also wraps up our school year, which I count as a real year from July 1 to June 30.  As of yesterday, I now have a senior, a sophomore, […]

The Living Page: Thinking About Nature Journals

  I’m a little late joining Jen’s discussion of Laurie Bestvater’s book The Living Page, but I have been following along since (almost) the beginning.  Laurie’s book is meaty and thoughtful, the kind of book that asks to be talked over with like-minded friends.  I’m jumping into Discussion 2: Nature Journals (pp.17-25).  Originally I was […]

Birthday Fishing

On August 22, Chipmunk turned 6.   He wanted a cake with army guys (generously provided in two different colors by his brothers), and he wanted to go fishing.  With his brothers.  And his father. So he got a fishing rod…   And his brothers also got fishing rods, and we spent a Saturday afternoon […]

A Back from Vacation Daybook

The Alabama Gulf Coast didn’t seem to bear too many marks from Hurricane Isaac over Labor Day Weekend. Weather: Hot. Humid. But the forecast is for a cool-down into the 80’s this weekend.  Hopefully it will come with some rain.  We’ve gotten a bit of rain in the past week; apparently there was a monster […]

Learning Highlights from Last Week

Some highlights from the last week or so… Chipmunk turned five!  He got some real tools for his birthday and has been spending a lot of time pounding nails into wood scraps, and screwing and unscrewing wood screws. He’s also been fascinated by Can You See What I See?: Toyland Express: Picture Puzzles to Search […]