|Best we can tell this is a yellow bear morph|
|Spider web w/ dew on it|
|Heron in the swamp|
|See the baby garter snake? My boys thought he was cute|
|We saw tons of sun turtles sunning themselves on the log|
|one of the caterpillars we saw- a Hickory Tussock Moth caterpilar|
|"Frog on a log... it rhymes"|
|milkweed plant (we think)|
|Snapping turtle walking through the grass|
After our hike we headed home for lunch. While I made lunch I had the boys each work on writing a letter to Santa. We hadn't done any writing assignments in a while and I have many family members looking for Christmas ideas for the boys already so I thought this would be a fun way to accomplish both tasks. It wasn't though. Other than Ian who sat right down and started writing, it was another painful writing assignment. Alec and Evan ended up in tears and left the room. They weren't even able to come up with ideas of what they wanted to write. It took a very long time but they eventually finished up a letter. I helped Evan with most of his since we still can't spell but I did have him write a few words here and there. I was disappointed and feel like we've spent the last few days since we got home from vacation battling about school work. I'm not sure if it's just that they got so relaxed about schoolwork while on vacation and need more time to get back into the swing of things, if the activities just aren't engaging enough or what but I'm getting sick of cajoling, threatening and bargaining just to get through one day's worth of work. Oh well, overall it wasn't a bad day and we accomplished a lot. We'll have a nice break over the weekend and start fresh again on Monday.
Ian (my non- artist) was the only one who felt like doing art this afternoon and we're both thrilled with how well it turned out! He traced some of the leaves he brought home with him from the hike this morning and colored them in using oil pastels. He used bright autumn colors and it came out lovely. It was so wonderful to see his beaming smile filled with pride. He's usually a bit disappointed in how his pictures turn out so I was happy to see him so excited about his final picture. I just wish the oil pastels we had were more oily and blended better since I was a bit disappointed by the way they didn't really cover the paper but, on the plus side, I didn't have a mess to clean up when art was done! I did, however, have a lovely fall picture to display.
We ended our day by going to the orchard to pick apples and then hung around in our backyard for a bit feeding the fish and trying to entice the ducks over to our dock. It looked like we had a male mallard along with the female today and we were very excited since all summer we fed the females and the ducklings but did not see any males. Unfortunately, they didn't come close enough for us to be 100% sure that's what we were seeing. The younger boys watched an episode of Wild Kratts about the proboscis monkey. Wild Kratts is Alec's favorite show and I love that it combines fiction and non- fiction to make science and animal behavior very exciting. I'm always amazed at the facts he retains and learn from these shows. And, once again, I'm amazed by all we managed to accomplish in a day. We always seem to be a bit more focused on science but they just love it and science teaches us so much about the world around us. We can't wait to start a weekly round of nature walks now that the perfect weather for it is upon us! I love fall in New England and am so excited to start our round of fall hiking, and art projects on top of all the traditional holiday planning, baking, and recipe hunting.