Thief checkingIt was not raining as much as yesterday, but still chilly and damp.  I sent a few of the kids outside to do a quick errand for me just before lunch.  I thought that Megan was inside with Mark.

I soon realized that Megan was outside.  She had put on her boots and was standing by our huge Maple Tree in the backyard. When I went to get her because she was not wearing a coat,  I realized that she had discovered how to remove the hose we use to collect sap, and was drinking the sap from it.Sap thief

I found shoes and my camera to catch her in the act. She would check how much sap was in the bucket, and then drink the sap giggling every so often.  She only stopped because she was shivering. She knew how to put the hose back into the bucket, though she had a little trouble putting the tinfoil cover over that.  I think she discovered something she really likes.

We won’t collect much more sap this week.Thief caught  After dropping 30 degrees today, the temperature won’t be good for collecting sap again until late next week. We collected 5 gallons of sap so far, so we are off to a good start.


Old Acquaintance

I met an old acquaintance at the mall yesterday.  The parks department is hosting different programs to go along with the Photography Show this week. The program yesterday was about reptiles and amphibians.  The kids and I got reacquainted with Snuffy, the Corn Snake. I think this was the first time that Allan has met him.

I really don’t like snakes, and holding them is not my favorite thing to do. But when the kids were little, they did not want to hold them either.  I dared them to hold a baby Rat Snake  that a friend had. Well, they dared me back, and I ended up holding the Rat Snake too. Mark discovered that he likes snakes a lot!

I learned a very important Mommy lesson. Don’t dare the kids to do something I don’t want to do 🙂  I ended up holding a salamander once because of a dare too, but the photo proof of that is lost somewhere.

Everyone enjoyed playing with Snuffy yesterday except for Andrea and Megan.  Megan kept far away from Snuffy, and Andrea was keeping an eye on Megan. When we got home, she said she sort of wishes she could have held him too.

I still don’t want a pet snake, but Snuffy is okay once in awhile.



Mark and Megan Mark by tree I needed some nice pictures of Mark. He is growing and changing so quickly, that I am having trouble keeping up.

Since August, he has outgrown me, changed his voice and can out eat me (and Allan) for any meal.  I have heard many rumors that this is only the beginning!

Because of this, I rarely can get the camera to see what I see.  But while we were playing at the park, Mark’s personality was really showing through.  I loved how he kept playing and exploring, but taking quick breaks to look at me for a picture. I treasure the times he discovers something exciting and still yells for me to come look.

Mark on logI am so fortunate to have the privilege of watching Mark grow. I am thankful that he can learn at home so I have extra time to watch him change and mature.  God has a wonderful plan for Mark, and I am loving being a part of it.





MushroomsMark thinks that these are “Stairstep Fungi”, but I am not sure what kind.  We found these yesterday on a log we sat on.  I really like the colors, but the nut on top really caught my eye.  I wonder who’s lunch we disrupted.


Mark.bwMark and I had a “date” while the other kids had Science Sleuths at Oxbow today.  Megan was with us being “princess” but she had to follow us around and do what Mark wanted to do.  Mark is the prince, and princesses follow their princes around :).  She did a good job most of the time.

Mark discovered a new path. He wanted to go by the water, and he found some steps that I have never been down.  We found some neat places to explore and Mark found what we think are snow fleas.  He also found the bones of a buck in the water!  Very neat, but sort of gross too.

While he played, I took pictures of him and Megan. I have more nice ones of him, but I think this is my favorite.


Adrian enhancedThe weather has been very mild this year, so even though the snow is not very deep, we thought we would try sledding.  The hills were hardly used with very little soft snow so the kids had  trouble getting their sleds to go very fast. Megan learned very quickly to make the ride “scarier” by screaming the whole way down. Everyone enjoyed getting outside, though it was a “tame” day at the sledding hills.  Megan and AudreySledding

Crystal Bubble

Crystal Bubble

This morning, the kids went next door to help the neighbor shovel her driveway.  Megan wanted to go too, so she started that way without me.

This afternoon, we were being silly and playing with bubbles in the house.  We discovered that some of them would bounce on the carpet before popping.  I am not sure how long we played with the bubbles, but it was a lot of fun.