Monday, January 3, 2011

Outdoor adventures

We've been spending a lot of of time in the good ol' out-of-doors. Now, if you know me you're probably laughing. I call myself a nature lover, and I am. As long as the grass is green and the sun is out so, so am I; I even LOVE rain. But if there's cold or snow I prefer to observe nature from behind a window pane preferably with a cup of hot tea (more specifically this one, thanks Sis!) in hand and wrapped in a cozy afghan. I am in no way a lover of cold weather or winter activities (accept drinking tea and hot cocoa, of course). . . . but this year I'm trying with all I've got.

We've been attempting to lure some birds into our yard but have not had much luck. Everyday we layer on the gear and head outside to refill the water bowl and check on our food level, we even occasionally leave a yummy treat such as an orange, a pile of cranberries or cashews. But they are dissing us. Hardcore. Any suggestions?
Yesterday we went to the Chippewa Nature Center (oh how I wish this place was in our backyard!). We all enjoyed the winter exploration activities they had set up. Ice fishing in cardboard boxes (Willow was a tad bit upset that all she caught were perch), tracing/rubbing snowflakes, stamping prints of woodland animals, trees, and even scat (Daddy Oak was appalled by this, haha), and plays were put on in the puppet show theater. The highlight of that area was snow. Not real snow of course but this fun stuff. I was told they sell it at the Dollar Tree! I've been pondering ideas for sensory boxes and tables for a while and I am SO going to snatch up some of this stuff. I think I played in it longer than the munchkins did! Snow! Inside! without having to be cold! Score!(I see more felt board accessories and some homemade tree blocks in our near future)

Afterward we headed out to the trails. For a quarter mile or so we were all enjoying the snowy trails and were listening keenly to bird calls and songs(they have birds?!) until Cedar, while skipping with all the joy and calamity of an almost two year old, biffed it. HARD. On his face. I immediately picked up the screaming statue of a child to see blood dripping down into his mouth. We promptly did an about face and booked it back to the car. After clearing the blood, some snuggles and a drink, he smiled and as if to prove that he is in fact all boy, he proudly strutted his scraped up, swollen, and still somewhat bloody nose and upper lip.
(the day after, swelling down, minimal bruising, and his ever constant smirk)
This morning we put away the Christmas decorations and hauled the tree to the curb. There were tears (from Willow), sampling of pine needles(Cedar), and a sigh of relief (mama). We decorating the waiting tree with popcorn and cranberries and slices of orange, in hope once again of baiting some beautiful birdies.
What makes you happy to be outside?


  1. Hi Jess,
    Sweet pictures of the children learning naturally - the way it's supposed to be.
    Looks like you all are truly happy folk. I enjoyed reading about your outdoor adventures, and look forward to your next fun post.

  2. Thank you Debra! We've been busy this last week, without much time to post, hopefully I'll get to it tomorrow! Have a wonderful weekend!