Wonderful Wednesday – Summer Cattail Study

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A few weeks ago, we headed back to our cattail patch for a summer nature study. By “our” I mean a cattail patch about five minutes from our house, where we did our spring cattail nature study.

I printed out the toppers from Handbook of Nature Study – a blog we follow loosely for our nature observations.

Summer Cattail Notebooking Pages

I glued the toppers to white paper and divided it into four parts, so they could draw four objects.


While there, I asked the kids to walk around and get as close to the cattails as possible.  Continue reading »

Cattail Nature Walk

Walking to get the best view of the cattails


“Look, mom! A snake hole!” exclaimed my son.

Noticing A Snake Hole

Look, mom!


Not sure if this was a snake hole, but it was a hole indeed.

Maybe a snake hole

Maybe a snake hole


I asked them to draw four things they saw. They did – their drawings were in pencil, so they don’t photograph well. They drew rocks, trees, the creek, and the bridge.


The pretty covered bridge where our cattail patch lies

The pretty covered bridge where our cattail patch lies


I also asked them to listen to the sounds of the area. At first, they could hear only man-made sounds: the air conditioning of the apartment buildings nearby, car engines driving by. I asked them to close their eyes and see if they could hear insects. They could. Also, the breeze through the cattails. Yes, they heard that, too.

Then, I allowed them to frolic around the creek.

Boy and girl are having fun in the sun, around a cattail area, jumping over creek

Fun in the sun, around the cattail area


It was fun and easier than the first time we headed over there. Maybe because they are older, e.g. my daughter could now jump over the creek without actually falling in. Maybe because I knew what to expect. I can’t wait for our fall cattail study.

Wonderful Wednesday – Roses

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The Outdoor Hour Challenge last Friday was about earth worms. Hmmm… I don’t want to go there. I chose roses instead because, well, they have inundated my life in the last seven days.

Our rose bushes have exploded. Then, my husband came home with yellow roses, too.

My husband and I are celebrating our ninth anniversary tomorrow. He brought me a dozen yellow roses and a card.

Yellow roses, baby breath

Bouquet of yellow roses and baby’s breath my husband brought me for our ninth anniversary

He said we already have a garden full of pink roses. And, we do.  Continue reading »

Pink rose bush in front of home

One of the many rose bushes in our garden

He wanted to bring me something different.

Somebody once said that flowers mean a lot to a wife especially because flowers have no lasting presence or usefulness. We wives tend to be a little too concerned with practicality and usefulness. We suffer from the Martha syndrome. Not Martha Stewart. The Bible Martha.

Flowers remind us to take time and smell the roses. I could not resist the cliché. Sorry.

As homeschooling mothers, we may be tempted, for instance, to redeem the time and gather up the fragments (or moments) and turn everything into a lesson.

Like, the rose is beautiful but its thorns warn us that looks can be deceiving, not to mention dangerous. Or whatever.

It does not have to be that way.

Our children need a mom, too. Not just a teacher.

That’s why I like these nature studies. They are observations. Moments in time we share with our children looking at pretty things.

I was surprised to find out that Anna Comstock did not include roses in her Handbook of Nature Study. I wonder if she felt roses were too well-known to be studied.

Here’s what I know about roses: rose petals, besides being beautiful, are edible. So are the seed pods the flowers leave behind once they wither. These seed pods are known as rose hips.

I grew up eating rose hip jam in Romania. I have never made it. Maybe one day, when my kids get older, I can enlist their help to make this one.

Until then, we enjoy admiring roses.