Follow the Destruction

This is what Emmy monster-whispered to me going up the stairs to get bedtime started. 

I was like-what?!?

“Follow the destruction, Jesse James.”

Come again, Em?

It’s what she has learned on Pokemon. 

In other Pokemon news, Olivia taught the older two how to play the card game today. We may have Pokemon fanatics on our hands. 

Mystery Science

We recently started to use a new learning platform for science, a start up called Mystery Science.  It is an online curriculum that uses questions to lead us to understanding.  Today everyone joined in on the fun.  It was a lesson about states of matter and identifying properties of different materials.  The mystery question was:

Why are so many toys made out of plastic?

And the problem to solve involved getting candy to a friend at sleep away camp but choosing a type that would make it to Camp Too Hot safely.

So we learned about toys in the olden days which were made of wood.  Hard, had to be carved, took much to much time to make…

And then we considered how to make a lot of things that are exactly alike.  Like Popsicles.  Which led to a discussion about how we make Popsicles with water that can be poured into a mold and frozen.  

Well, if water can be liquid and change yo solid and vice versa, what other material can do that too?  Plastic and…candy.

So we did an experiment with hot water and candy.  Of course the kids loved it!  Added bonus-we talked about the widget factoryūüėČ

This was a great find!  So far really enjoy figuring out the challenges.  


Among many other things today, we attended a class at Phipps Conservatory today. Going there always makes me nostalgic for the two years I spent at Pitt. While we were underwhelmed with the class-save for Emmy who claimed to love it-everyone did love passing through the rooms of plants. The butterfly room just opened. We saw a brand new White Peacock butterfly and loved trying to touch the cacti. 

Tuesday is Terrific

And yellow, in this case.

Let me explain.

We do a regularly, irregularly scheduled poetry teatime in the week.  It works best on Friday mornings for breakfast just because…captive audience and waffles.  But today we did an active poetry time, focused on the color yellow.

Everyone ran around hunting for yellow stuff, we displayed it on the table, read AYell for Yellow a few times, listed words that rhyme with yellow (fellow! Mellow! Hello!) and each kid wrote a poem.  

And then we ate Nilla wafers.


North Park Nature Walk

On our nature walk today we saw

  • Red winged blackbirds
  • Bluebirds
  • Bat boxes
  • Chimney Swifts
  • Some sort of wetland swallow
  • A goose one her nest
  • A goose nest
  • A gander defending his lady
  • Beaver trees
  • Beaver dams
  • A frog
  • A beaver
  • Plovers
  • Yellow swallowtail butterflies
  • Wildflowers 
  • A garter snake
  • A marsh vole 

Yes! Quite the list and quite the walk. The park’s nature trail is well marked and has a boardwalk to stay out of the muck. Thank goodness, because the garter snake would have been stepped on…we were up above it, looking down. A great discovery!

Hello Little Blog I Love

I miss seeing you everyday.  Where did my habit go?  Vacation. Other writing.  School.  Time whizzing by.  Sorry, blog.

Today was a beautiful day!  We went in search of a trellis for Ollie’s pea plants (and possibly chickens).  I was saved from myself because there were only three lonely, less than cute nearly grown chicks.  One may have been a rooster…they did not know for sure…just a mixed lot from the hatchery.  While Sam is willing to do away with bodies, I don’t think we would have the heart to let a rooster go to be something’s dinner in the woods.  Or responsible for a feral rooster in the woods of Gibsonia.  Maybe next year….

But, peas have been planted and trellis is erect.  Lily was out playing all day with Mia, then Olivia, then Landon, then Bryce and Seth.  Ollie went to Jack’s birthday party. Because they are BFFs.  And little Miss Em was my tag along-overnight, on a walk, picking out gardening gloves, planting things, and trying not to sleep in the warm car after dropping off Ollie.  Lily did her hair and nails this morning and she walked around with tiny curls all day long. Lily actually got to brunch her hair out; I think I will encourage this beauty alliance.  

Off to bed…morning comes quickly.

Sun Sapped

Or Zapped…either way, the sunshine gave us energy to play outside all day long. Everyone sat at the dinner table red-faced and slightly crispier than they were this morning. ¬†Warm April days always seem hotter because the trees haven’t leafed out yet. ¬†There were cries for sprinklers but none for popsicles, only because no one remembered where they are hidden. ¬†The garage is cleaned and ready to set up messy science and art projects. ¬†While I know the weather might change, the week made me so happy to be living in the springtime! ¬†We started seeds on Friday. ¬†Ollie has been diligent in his observation, looking for signs of change. ¬†His peas have actually started to sprout. ¬†Lily’s flowers and Emmy’s carrots and watermelon should be showing signs of green by the end of the week. ¬†Lissa is visiting and brought along some cast-off goodies from a country club in Cleveland that is closing. ¬†We have bags of money, drink order pads, ¬†accounts payable checks and other various casino-like stuff. ¬†If you visit, expect for Emmy to ask you what you want to drink and show you to your table.


Birthday Girl!

Who is this girl who has grown so much over the past 8 years?  It is amazing watching her grow and turn into herself!  She still a sassy delight!  Always a girl with her own ideas and sense of style..and that smile!  You are much loved and adored, Lillian Hughes!  We love you more than ever!



I know I’ve been absent and irregular in posting. Hoping to get back into a rhythm by the weekend. Why did I think a dentist appointment on the first day back to school was a good idea?!?  You got me. But now Lily has sealant and Emmy has her first dental exam in the books!  As Lily said, she did really great and wasn’t scared at all!



We woke up to : 

What the heck, spring?!?  There is a mourning dove nesting in our big crescent window above the front door. She is working hard to keep the eggs warm!  We spent the day doing laundry, changing sheets, and reading new books from the library.  Listening to some playawaysūüėć. And changing from clothes to pjs-only after threats of no food and the like.