Later in the week, the inevitable post-Halloween cold stilled our activities. We mostly stayed home, recuperating quietly, wondering who’d get it next. (No one, as it turned out.) But we turned our plans into at-home experiments with art + cookery. We used new art supplies, listened to audiobooks while painting, and felt inspired to try making fresh pasta, a whole-day experiment with delicious results. Being home for a few days, just making sure we didn’t have Covid + trying not to spread germs, gave us more time to dig into projects we’ve abandoned. Both Rosetta and Wilder seemed to feel inspired by digging around, unearthing + organizing the art closet. I am hoping to do more of these things as the weather cools + we’re indoors more.
With a focus on science this week, we managed to squeeze in a ton of experiments. We made the strawberry DNA work (finally), exploded some soda, engineered taller, more solid buildings by using celery + apple chunks with the marshmallows, and are (hopefully) growing some rock candy in the cupboards of our rental space. We also visited Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, where all the animals came out to say hello! After a long-awaited trip to IKEA, the kids also assembled their individual desks + other pieces. Rosetta put together a chair + Wilder a shelving unit.
This week we crafted terrariums together with our homeschool group. The kids shopped for plants initially, then overrode that idea in favor of other things. Wilder chose a remote island beach, driftwood and seashells, complete with a lost message in a bottle. Rosetta’s beach featured colorful, poured sand, along with a concrete toad who’s laying her eggs. All turned out nicely + we’re enjoying them at home now.
Science this week focused on Grenade, the tomato hornworm we found in the garden. He was already three inches long at discovery and is now, a week later, five-and-a-half inches. He’s named after the shape of his poop, which he can really use to fill a jar every day. We’re hoping he cocoons soon as we’re running out of garden-fresh tomato plant leaves for him to eat.
It’s fall + we all seem to have more energy for projects. Things started this week: wooden model, Wilder’s costume, Rosetta’s baby plant propegation, kombucha flavoring tests, + Rosetta’s calico critters Halloween remodel.
Last camping trip of the year, sniff. We headed off to Stagecoach State Park in Oak Creek with a set of grandparents in their RV. It was glorious weather, 70s by day, 30s by night. I love when you need the fire to survive. It feels more primal, even tho we had a camper to retire to in desperate times. We explored, and made mud, and fished, and wandered through so many ecosystems.
One of this week’s highlights was a rainy trip to Matthews/Winters Park, where we found all kinds of moss and lichen to ID. There were also baby snails everywhere, and the discussion about where they came from included some fairy input from the younger group members. Follow-up research on snails proved that they hatch from eggs and wasn’t quite as magical, but very explanatory. We then searched unsuccessfully for snail eggs in the water. We also ID’d some bittercress, but based on the water’s dirtiness, decided not to eat that one.
We kicked off our Wildling groups this week. The Monday crew made slime + an insane obstacle course, plus the usual social play + mayhem of volume. Wilder’s gravel slime was the most popular, even if it was an accidental addition. On Wednesday, there was whittling, carving + fort-building outdoors with an entirely new group of enthusiastic kiddos. Looks like it’ll be two fun groups this semester!
If Jesus taught quietly, by parable, by example, why could none of his living followers go that route? Too subtle, I think now.