Wednesday, September 30, 2009
OK, I am irrationally excited about this sighting .. these are wood ducks! I have always wanted to see wood ducks. There were a few pairs in the pond but they all took off as soon as I showed interest in them. The male was actually chasing the female and nipping at her to make her go more quickly away from danger (aka the crazy woman with the camera). Wish I could have gotten a better look. We were on our way to pick up our veggies at the CSA .. the last week. Sigh. We got more potatoes, garlic, onions, and some great butternut squash. So we had delicious butternut pear soup for dinner. I made biscuits and salad. J made peanut butter chocolate cupcakes. YUM! Then Felica stopped over with some toys for the (thrilled) kids. Good day.
L saved a dragonfly from a spider web. I am proud but I swear this kid has no fear when it comes to bugs. At least she has mostly stopped catching bees! We met A, R and E for a picnic and walk. The kids got soaked under the bridge at Devil's Hopyard. I luckily anticipated this and brought extra clothes. Then we went for a nice walk in the woods, the kids found a log over the stream and worked on their fear/confidence in crossing it. My kids were determined. e started out inching across on his bottom and by the end, he was walking across. We saw a turkey on the drive in. Collected little peach colored berries (could not figure out what tree they were coming from.. must look up) and the kids thought they would be perfect gifts for the fairies so we collected some and took them home for the fairy garden.
Florence Griswold Museum. The Rambles art installation. Kids loved poking around in it. Really neat and always amazed by the beauty of FloGris. L had her class and since it was small today, e and I got to join. We toured the gallery and the house, and then had a chance to paint down by the river. The kids looked adorable in their huge smocks. It was fun for them (if a little frustrating at times) to mix their own colors. We will plan to practice more at home.
Kingfisher, Osprey, Black ducks, swans, tons of cormorants. Huge bullfrog, lots of dragonflies, monarch caterpillars (we took "Blue" and "curious" home and they turned into a chrysalis in the next 2 days), painted turtles, owl scat. There is something about the light in the fall. It was a beautiful day. We walked a lot, spent nice time together and went home and cooked a delicious meal.
Monday, September 28, 2009
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Thursday, September 17, 2009
In the evening we visited with Felica and her dog while putting the new tire back on the car. e was very concerned with how the tire would stay on.
L spent a bit of time playing at our hs neighbors house. Later we headed out to my membership meeting. The kids feel so comfortable there with all the adults. I love that my kids are able to have "friends" who are all ages. L says things like "My friend and I were talking about how much we like to watch birds" only for me to discover she is talking about a 50 year old. Love it. We got a call from our neighbor this morning .. she is a sweet 86 year old woman. She asked to borrow some change so she could ride the bus today without having to break dollar bills. When we went over to drop it off, she gave the kids bananas and a cookie. :) Riding the bus is something I am adding to our list of things to do.
Monday with our weekly hs friends. Everyone had a great time .. they love going to friends houses. Thanks P for having us all over. My kids especially loved the guinea pigs, trampoline (love/hate there, they are both requesting one although e found out in a difficult way that a hiding under a trampoline is not a wise choice), castle play, trumpet demonstration, hide and seek, and playing in N's room. We were all pretty overstimulated .. and headed home for quiet stories and taking in our dry, wonderful-smelling laundry from the clothesline. Ahh .. what a day!
I was very nervous about the potluck but we had a great turnout. Our minister pronounced me "the queen of membership." :) I am feeling overwhelmed being committee chair this year. Somehow when asked 2 years ago I thought the kids would be so much older and I would have more free time .. but those 2 years flew by and I am just as busy with the kids; if not more so. The potluck going well makes me feel a little more at peace with the responsibilities; and the kids were a great help and even stayed for lunch.
e says when we came home we played with train tracks, read a story, watched a movie, went grocery shopping, listened to the new books on tape .. he remembers perhaps better than I.
Monday, September 14, 2009
J came home with his new elaborate tattoo and the kids asked lots of questions. I wish we could have gone with him because I know the kids would have been interested to watch .. but I know we could not have handled the four hours in the tattoo place! L spent a lot of time today writing words with "at" and kept coming up with them .. cat, hat, mat! A good reminder for me of how motivated the kids are to learn and how natural and spontaneous their learning can be if I relax and let them lead us. She knows more words by sight each day and I am trusting the process. She certainly has the motivation to read .. we spend hours on the couch looking at books, "reading" and creating stories from the illustrations and "painting" with a dry paintbrush. (my artist!) She made up this activity a long time ago and I feel she is studying how the illustrations were made. Now e does follows her example. I know that they are learning all the time .. and I am reminded of the beauty and wonder in the things I am inclined to think of as ordinary and every day. My "job" is to provide an environment full of options and opportunities. I really do love this time of year .. I feel very inspired.
L woke me up this morning by asking if she could go out and do more yardwork. I asked if she wanted to eat first but no she wanted to get out there asap. :)
We headed out late morning (after I tore her away from the clippers) for not-back-to-school gathering at Ocean Beach. There were quite a few people there despite the fact that it was "cancelled" due to bad weather. It was super windy with bigger waves than I have ever seen at OB. We had fun on the beach for a bit and then headed across the boardwalk to the playground when all the kids started complaining about sand in their eyes.
Later we got a message from the grandparents who are traveling in China. We did some research on Beijing and the Ming Tombs .. then we were able to find the tombs on satellite photographs ... pretty neat! The kids were fascinated by one of the excavated tombs and by the pairs of mythical animals that guard a section on the path. Can't wait to see their pictures.
I went out in the evening to hear David Benioff speak about his novel "City of Thieves" .. hearing him speak made me appreciate the book even more .. and I got my copy autographed. :) I was surprised to hear that it is all ficition .. he had me there! It is such a visually rich book and it has really stayed with me .. even weeks after having finished it. I highly recommend it.