Last week my pictures were extremely lacking, so I just bailed on the whole report. (Yes, I got a phone call from my mother.) So this is a two-weeker with more pictures than words.

Last week we had a four day week, with standardized testing for Sassafras and our last Africa enrichment class (We learned about Swaziland!) on Friday of that week. As such, we weren’t able to get any nature study in; however, this week we were back in the saddle! We had some nice additions to our bird feeder this week. The Z-man spotted a male Downy woodpecker. It liked to go back and forth between our Tulip tree and the feeder. We decided to make it the subject of our nature study this week. We did some research on the All About Birds website and read from the Handbook of Nature Study and the Burgess Bird Book for Children.  I included the kids’ woodpecker drawings in their individual sections below. Thursday morning we also spotted a Rose-breasted grosbeak for the first time. These birds are transient in our area and not very common. I took a picture,  but it’s not the best.  I also spotted a Tufted titmouse for the first time earlier in the week. Sassafras claimed she sees them all the time. Oh well. I was excited anyway.

A not-so-nice visitor to our bird feeder this week has been a pesky, ambitious squirrel. Usually the squirrels eat the seeds that drop to the ground, but this squirrel decided that wasn’t enough. He clawed the top of the feeder off and before I realized what had happened, he was INSIDE the feeder. So far, some duct tape strategically placed has kept him out. Behold the power of duct tape.

Speaking of bird feeders, Daddy made us another bird feeder to hang from our oak tree. A friend had shared the idea. You can find directions here.

Our county homeschool group was supposed to have field day on Friday this week. However, we’ve had so much rain this week that the fields were a bit muddy. So the whole thing has been postponed until next week. With the change of plans, we spent the morning with some friends at the North Carolina  Botanical Gardens. The highlights included many varieties of blooming pitcher plants, venus flytraps, and many different varieties of ferns. I have another post with all my pictures in a little slide show, but I’ve included a few favorites here. Isn’t the light coming through the ferns and the beech tree beautiful? I love spring green.


Sassafras (2nd Grade):

Over the last two weeks in history, Sassafras first learned about Daniel Boone and then about the writing of the constitution. She was thrilled when I handed her an American Girl book for her history literature last week. This week she read ….If You Were There When They Signed the Constitution. She also started reading Amos Fortune: Free Man for literature. She began a US states notebook by making pages for Delaware, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. This is a project that will carry over into next year’s history.

In science we’ve been learning about water–specifically oceans, currents, waves, and tides. Sassafras keeps asking when we’re going to the beach. She was a year old the one and only time she went to the beach. She’s been to a Lake Michigan beach several times, but since there are no tides on lakes (even those that look like the ocean), somehow it doesn’t count!

Addendum: My hubby has just informed me that Lake Michigan has 0.5-1.5 inch tides. So there you go….I don’t think Sassafras is gonna buy it.

Z-man (Kindergarten):

The Z-man finished up Life of Fred Apples last week and started the Butterflies book this week. We also finished The House at Pooh Corner for our read-aloud. The Z-man is still working through the CLE 1 Reader with me and flying through Magic Tree House books in his free time.


Little Man (3 years old):

Little Man finished up his first Explode the Code primer. Now he’s on the “dinosaur” book. You can bet he’s pretty pumped about that!


Doodlebug (2 years old):

Doodlebug has been feeling the need to cross her arms…apparently.



I have now read 88% of Don Quixote! There’s no quittin’ now, baby! By the way, below is Doodlebug Quixote. Can’t you just see her fighting windmills with that crazed look in her eyes? By the way, the fighting windmills part happens 9% into the book. If it happened at 88%, no one but me and ten other people would know about it. Ha! Kidding! I think I’m kidding, anyway.

Last week I bought  a new digital piano, a Casio Privia PX-330. It has weighted keys, so it feels like a real piano, and it sounds really good, too. I can also use it as a USB device and plug it into my computer. Not quite sure how I’m going to use that feature, but I’m sure it’s got to be handy for something.

In other news, some of the 50 lily bulbs my hubby planted a few weeks ago are finally coming through.

Oh by the way….If you’ve ever wondered how to finally get around to cleaning out underneath your bathroom cabinet, just let half a gallon of liquid hand soap leak all over everything.  That’ll get ya movin’!