Another successful day with "Turn it off Tuesday" I went on a field trip with Ruben to Whitaker Creek. A great day of water sampling, watching fish in the fish trap, identifying trees, searching for insects in the creek. It was an awesome field trip with the third graders. That evening when we got home, we decided as a family to attend the Siuslaw Chapter of Surfrider Foundation's monthly meeting at Wakonda. We discussed future water quality monitoring site in the Marine Reserve by Washburne State Park. The Tucker's have volunteered to collect data for NOAA once a month (more on that in future soon) We also watched a cool surf movie and played some fooz(sp?) ball. It was turn if off Tuesday, but it felt like environmental activist day. Either way you look at I was as proud as could be to have may children involved. Way better than any heart warming family movie I could ever dream of watching.
The house was a little neglected this weekend. Toys, laundry, and dishes piled up. I rested due to a pulled muscle in my back and boys well they don't care much for housekeeping. Yet when I called for a cooperative effort in house keeping and not leaving it all for mom to do...wow amazing results! I got a half an hour out of all of them, sweeping, vacuuming, unloading the dishwasher, picking up toys, and loading the dish washer and cleaned the bathroom! I was quite pleased and the house became a bit more like a home than a disaster area. Such good boys!
I think we all feel like a weekend with a bon fire on the beach surrounded by beautiful like minded outdoor lovers is a weekend worth sharing. One of my most favorite things is a big hot fire on a winter night. What a great evening with dogs, kids and friends. Good times!
Chickens are laying about 1 or 2 eggs a day now. The more light we get the more eggs we get. They really are curious little animals. Dinosaurs you know. They are a flock, we don't have names for them. I can hardly tell them apart actually, there are some differences, but more like a whole entity. Then there is Rosie, that sweet little bunny. She and Pancho have made peace. Now she roams free in the yard a few days a week and then comes to me whens he is ready for the hutch for a few days. It is fun to see her running and kicking her legs up having a good ol' time. She chases the chickens sometimes too. Pancho will chase her a bit too, but not too much and he doesn't get her, though he could. She has a few hiding spots too where Pancho cannot get at her. I love having these precious little animals in my yard and if I had a bigger place I would surely have a sheep or a goat too. For now and maybe forever I am happy to watch the bunny and chickens while I sit in the yard and enjoy the view of my backyard buddies.
Last week the kids had a day off from school. We decided to go to a spot that we haven't been to in a while. We also invited Melisa to come play with us. The sun was warm and we brought snacks and drinks. We spent a few hours in this magnificent spot. Swinging from the rope, sledding down the dune, laying in the sun, rolling down the dune and then laying in the sand. I couldn't think of a better way to spend the day and such a treat to have Melisa join us too. I couldn't help but to think of Collin Mitchell in Utah; April had told me that Collin takes the sled down the street to a park to play at "the pit" in the snow and that he loved sledding and building jumps in the snow. That is just what Ruben did too, built jumps and loved riding down the hill in sand on his sled. Parallel worlds in a whole different climate. I sure miss that family.
We have noticed that our kids are getting too much screen time. It could be the computer, a movie, kindle, or smart phone. They are masters at convincing us that they are researching and viewing educational material. Which they are, but still it is a screen. They also justify their screen time with having rode their bikes for an hour before their request, or read three chapters in a book, walked Pancho and the neighbors dog around the block, or just played basketball for an hour. Since they know physical exercise is very important. Our response to all of this is "ok, just set you timer so you don't loose track of time on the screen" Another useful tool in learning the concept of time. I feel that we do have a balance, yet there are days when we should just have no screen time at all, or even a vacation from screens. (i heard a lot of moaning when I mentioned this!) For now we are starting off with Turn it of Tuesdays at our house. Last week was our first day of officially choosing a day and sticking with it. What we did instead...a bit of complaining and whining, then some arguing, and then...cookies! Now you see how happy these two are! This is however a normal occurrence in our home (happy faces that is) But the intentional plan to do something different can be hard and needs a little inspiration and I know baking will certainly help with keeping these two engaged. Next was swimming at Highland Pool to burn off that stack of cookies we all ate! Good times with no screens required. At the end of the day they were both glad we did it and agreed to another Turn if of Tuesday next week.
A new month offered some inspiration in creating. We started with Valentine's Day cards and then went to skateboards and other fun things. Oil Pastels are fun to use, so vibrant in color. Chalk pastels are nice on construction paper. I love getting the boy's hands on different mediums. After our crafting session it looked like hurricane Valentine went through the room!