Friday, May 28, 2010

Summer Break Is Here!

The lazy days of summer are upon us!
Okay, so even though it is summer we all know the learning doesn't stop, nor does the craziness. It just takes on a more relaxed attitude. But for this summer I'm going to take a little break from the homeschool part of my blog. The girls are busy writing in their nature journals, having garden parties in the side yard, and naming all of their toads. I'm busy trying to keep up with the garden and yard work that has suddenly burst upon me with the warm weather.

But never fear you can catch up with many of our happenings at my Home and Garden blog or check in on my writing progress at my original Eskimo Kisses blog. Please stop by and tell us what you are up to this summer as well!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Flowering Treasures And Another Backyard Lesson

Last post I wrote about how spring is in the air. And it is! We’ve been getting lots of needed rain recently, so this spring the wildflowers are popping up all over the place. In fact, we don't mow in many parts of our yard because we want to enjoy the blanket of vibrant colors that cover our lawn.

I'm always amazed by these native plants and how beautiful they are. People call them weeds and I have to laugh because I see some very expensive weeds for sale in the nurseries around town! Anyway, a few days ago our girls were over at a neighbors house and discovered one of the flowers when pulled had a very garlicky odor. They came home all excited because they had seen the same flowers in our yard. Em said that our friends called it wild garlic.

Today they went out hiking along the far side of our property and came back carrying these pretty flowers.

Sure enough, they have a very pungent garlicky odor along the cut stems. This made us question whether or not they could be eaten. We decided to do a little research and discovered they are actually part of the allium family. This one in particular is Allium Drummondii, also known as Drummond’s onion.

The Native Americans used to gather these and use the bulb that is found at the end of the plant as an onion. They would cook it with their meats. It needs to be cooked, apparently for awhile, because it contains a substance that could upset your stomach if eaten raw.

So my girls have entered another page in their nature journal. We are constantly amazed by what our little piece of land provides homes for.

Do you have any favorite “weeds”?

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Spring Is In The Air


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Spring is in the air here at Cotton-Top Hills.  My girls love the wildflowers popping up around the place.


They also enjoy watching the wildlife.  Recently, we have been sitting at our front window each morning watching all the birds coming and going.  They are quick to notice the birds are coming in pairs. 

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This always starts some interesting discussions.  They talk about how the quail, for instance, come in their little coveys through the fall and winter, but as the weather warms they begin to pair off.  They watch as males scare off potential suitors  and feel sorry for the single quail without a mate.   IMG_6847

As the weather gets warmer they know to watch for the sun loving reptiles that start stirring.

IMG_3671IMG_1645Em came across a Horny  Toad the other day, which is one of our favorites. They are really very sweet, I promise!

Enjoy the sweet days of Spring and all the learning experiences they provide.

Do your kids have a favorite bird?

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Little One's Entries To Webster

When young couples I know are expecting I love to tell them that they are about to have the best entertainment they could possibly imagine. They usually stare at me blankly, not understanding that the life they created is about to arrive in this world full of their own built in entertainment factor.

From the first coo to the gassy smiles we become enraptured. Suddenly Oprah is lost in the background, as we focus on our little one and anxiously call our husbands each time she does something amazing. Like sucking on her toes. Surely toe sucking is a sign of future gymnastic abilities, right? Their baby years are so full of new and exciting accomplishments that mom and dad can just sit on the couch and stare at their baby for hours. Not once wishing they were at the movies or watching the latest CSI program.

But it only gets better because one day they will start to talk. The world that they have absorbed silently for the first couple of years of their life will suddenly emerge in words and sentences. Let the fun begin, because you will constantly be amazed and humored by what comes out of their mouths. I've tried to jot down some of the ramblings of all three of my girls at this age.

Little One just turned 3 and she is chock full of neat sayings. Partly, I think, because she has two sisters ages 7 and 10 who talk a lot. She listens to what they have to say and then puts her own spin on things sometimes.

I just thought I'd share her latest entries for Webster. Honestly, I think these words have a good chance of making it in, don't you?

High-heeled Chair - noun the elevated chair with a tray that babies sit in to eat.
"Mom remember when I was a baby and sat in that high-heeled chair?"

Cold pink- adj. a pastel color which is the opposite of hot pink
"Mom, my toes are a cold pink and yours are hot pink."

Risers- noun steps that lead to another level
"Do they have risers at their house? You know, like at our house. Those things that raise you to the upstairs."

Sharps- noun kitchen utensil that is used to slice through objects
"Mom, are you going to use the sharps to cut that apple?"

These are just a few of the words she comes up with? I love it because it tells me she is constantly observing the world around her. She is making comparisons and not letting her limits of vocabulary stop her from expressing herself. Who wouldn't be fascinated and entertained by this?

Does your little one have some memorable words that we need to enter into Websters?

Sunday, May 2, 2010

First Communion Weekend


This weekend we celebrated my 2nd child’s First Communion.  Both sets of grandparents flew in for the celebration and an uncle.  It was a day filled with blessings as we watched Soph take the next step in her spiritual journey.