Saturday, August 30, 2014

Science Saturday: Cattails, Mouring Doves and Cardinals!

(Last week's Science Saturday)

My fun story about cattails:
I had a cattail head once, and I got the brilliant idea to open it up in the house! Sigh....that resulted in a rush outside as the fuzz was trying to float around the house....never did that again! ;~) I did get everything out of the house, but the yard had a lot of cattail fuzz for a while! ;~D

A few fun facts:

  • Cattails are perennials! They live for several years, and may appear to be dead, but are actually in a dormancy over winter.
  • Cattails are edible throughout every season of their life. In the spring you can eat the shoots like celery, and in the late summer before the heads open to release the fluff, you can boil them and eat them like corn. (We tried this, but I think they were getting too old, so they didn't taste the best).
  • Even the roots are useful! You can use them for soups or dry them to ground into flour!
  • Mourning Doves are named after their mournful "song" they sing.
  • Once a Mourning Dove has found it's mate, they are mates for life. In the north they have 2 broods over the course of a summer. In the south they may have up to 5 broods!
  • Mourning Doves eat what ever seeds they can find, and in the fall they enjoy the grain and corn kernels left in the fields.
  • Cardinals are originally from the south. Slowly around the turn of the 20th century, they've drifted north. At the time, they were certain that the snow and harsh cold climate in the winter would stop them, but as you can see they haven't!
  •  Cardinals don't migrate, which is why we can see them all year round. A bright red cardinal on a winter day is such a cheery sight!
  • Cardinals weren't the only ones to slowly "drift" north. The Tufted Titmouse, the Mockingbird, and the Carolina Wren have also joined the Cardinals.

Science Saturday: Slugs, Skunks, and Indian Pipes!

(A skunk we accidentally trapped....we were aiming for woodchucks)

A few interesting things!

  • Slugs are not snails and they are not leeches. They look the same from a distance, but in reality they aren't even close to being the same!
  • A Slug's body is all one piece. They do not have segments. They are part of the Gastropoda family, which means "stomach-foot."
  • Slugs aren't too much trouble. Usually. We did have one eat our watermelon before, but that's the first time we've had that happen. They tend to enjoy eating the wild plants.
  • Skunks are among the top animals hit by cars. Most often they are hit around February during mating season.
  • Skunks are best known for their scent glands which are used as a weapon against predators. They can spray them up to 10ft away, temporarily blinding the predator. The smell and the pain prevent them from getting eaten.
  • Skunks are opportunistic carnivores. They like anything that they don't have to chase too much. They enjoy insects, birds, mice, turtle eggs, toads, and frogs. Occasionally they will help themselves to carrion. (Which is why they often become carrion ;~D )
  • Indian Pipe is a flowering plant. The flower hangs like a bell from the top of the stem, which makes it look like a pipe!
  • It doesn't feel like a flower, but more like a mushroom. Interestingly enough, you can not transplant it.
  • It lacks chlorophyll, so it can't manufacture it's own food. Instead it obtains food from the roots of nearby trees. The Indian Pipe absorbs food from it's towering friends, and grows quite happily.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Throwback Tuesday: Eleanor Roosevelt

There is so much to say about this amazing lady! I think this can say it best! 

She was a truly remarkable woman! 

The giving of love is an education in itself.
Eleanor Roosevelt

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Rock, Paper, Scissors: Shoot!

So on our way home from Church, T-Tot, and Lil' G decided to play Rock, Paper, Scissors: Shoot!

As I was listening to them, I thought of the possibilities the game would have should it be played with the process of elimination.

Say if one person chooses rock, and another, scissors. The scissors would be broken, and out of the game. Then the paper and rock would be left, and paper would win because the rock would be covered. Now if the scissors go against paper first, then the paper would be cut up and the rock would win as it would be able to smash the scissors. But, if rock and paper went first, then the rock would be removed, allowing the scissors to chop the paper back up, and win!

Now if you actually read that nonsensical rambling, I'll be very surprised! ;~D

Friday, August 22, 2014

I'm guest-posting!

I'm guest-posting over at  Eden's Evaluations! I encourage you to read this lovely young lady's blog as it's a lot fun! :~D

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Flippity-Flop Room Arrangement!

So when I first moved from the big room to the small room, my bed was against the window. It was that way for a while, while I shared the room with T-Tot. Then she and Lil' G shared the big room, and I got the little one all to myself. I didn't mind! It was nice and cozy to have a room of my own! We moved my bed against the wall until L-Jo moved into the room with me! She loved being in the room with me! But we had to move my bed back against the window. When we moved her to the other room last year, she was upset for weeks! T-Bug and I now share a room. My bed was still next to the window....which after forever and a day was getting rather boring. So I got out the tape measure and did the math and rearranged my room!


After :~)

I rather like it! :~D

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Temptation of Time

Time.What a temptation it is to waste it! I bought a watch the other day. I absolutely love wearing it! The shiny gold watch with a sleek brown leather band, is memorizing as you watch the seconds tick by. While I currently write this on paper to transfer to my blog later, there is a strong temptation to waste time and energy. I'd really like to chat with a friend online, but between thoughts on wasting time, I'm doing laundry (a way I can use my time better!). Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 tells about time. How there is a time and place for everything. With this watch I've discovered how fast time ticks away...

...a second lost here, a second lost there. The school season is upon me. My time is being filled with many blessings. School, my job, sisters, housework, and more! I could waste it on frivolous things or I could use it wisely. Is chatting with a friend, frivolous? No! On the contrary! Chatting with a friend deepens the bond of your friendship. So why did I choose to sort laundry? Because there is a time for everything. And the time right now would best be spend doing laundry! Use your time wisely so you don't succumb to the temptation of wasting it!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Throwback Tuesday: Agent 99 (Barbara Feldon)

I absolutely LOVE the Get Smart tv series from the late 60's! The guy who played Maxwell Smart Secret Agent 86, shares the same birthday as I do! And 99 is one of the best characters ever! Sweet, silly, sarcastic, sassy, and special! :~D

Maxwell Smart: [reads message from the secret compartment in the Chiefs desk] In case anything happens to me, contact my superior: Zebra 642. We're gonna have to look this up in the Chief's special codebooks
# 99: [pushes button to reveal the codebooks behind fake books on bookshelf] Zebra, that's the blue book.
Maxwell Smart: [Carlton reaches for the blue book] The blue book is the one with the green cover.
Carlson: Since when does a blue book have a green cover?
# 99: Max worked it out with the coding section. In case of a KAOS infiltrator every book has a cover identity.
Maxwell Smart: You see we have a cover for a cover.
Carlson: [reading from the book] It says: see green book.
Maxwell Smart: The green book is the one with the blue cover.
# 99: Max couldn't throw away a perfectly good book cover. 

(A perfect quote for my picture....I took the cover of a Bible dictionary for the shot ;~)

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Homeschooler's "Rap"!

 Today marks the 2nd anniversary of this lovely blog, Home On The Erie Canal!

As tradition, I have a fun Homeschooling post!

The very first post on this blog was a post about 4 Myths About Homeschooling!
Last year I wrote a post about 100 Things Homeschoolers Love!

This year, (drumroll please!), I present the Homeschooler's "Rap"!

(email readers may need to view the video on the website)

Pencils sharpened,
Textbooks bought,
Clean Pajamas,
And hand-me-down socks!

Snazzy Saxon,
It's time for the Mystery
Of History!

Composition notebooks,
Geometry tools,
McGuffey Readers,
With golden rules!

Vinegar, baking soda,
for a volcano.
Barometer, thermometer,
For the snow!

Good job stickers,
Smiley face stamps,
Song time now,
Let's all clap our hands!

Paperclips, staplers,
Elmer's Glue,
Cooking, cleaning,
For Home Ec too!

School is done at
Work and play,
We do it on the weekends
And on every day!

Time for a field trip
in the car!
Will we discuss amphibians?
Or the stars?

First, Second,
Third and Fourth,
In these grades we learn
South and North!

Fifth, Sixth,
Seventh and Eighth,
You learn to trust
And walk by Faith!

Ninth, Tenth,
Eleventh, and Twelve
You memorize the Dewey system
And how to shelve!

Being homeschooled
Is the best thing in the world,
No matter if your hair is
Straight or curled!

If you're homeschooled,
Won't you agree,
Being homeschooled is,
The best thing you can be!

Beautiful Blog Award!

The lovely Julia awarded me the Beautiful Blog Award!

 (A picture for no reason in particular ;~)

She gave me a few fun questions!

1. What makes a good book "good"?
When a book makes you laugh, cry, and want to squeeze a pillow all at once, then it's a good book!

2. What are three of your talents?
Dancing, singing, and teaching!

3. What's your favorite girl's name?
I like the names Cheryl, Lynn, Rose, Rosalinda, etc.! :~)

4. Boy's name?
Hmmm.....I like names that start with E-L-I.....

5. What books have made you cry?
Usually true stories in which one person overcomes obstacles and becomes stronger in the end.

6. What's your favorite Bible verse?
Probably.....Isaiah 64:8 :~)

7. Favorite prayer?
I memorized Ephesians 3:14-21 a while back. I encourage you to read this prayer, written by Paul to the Church in Ephesus!

I nominate anyone who would like to do this! :~) If you would like to write up a post and pass on the award, just comment a link to your lovely post!

Here are a few questions for you to do!

1. Favorite Author?
2. Favorite Bible Verse?
3. Favorite Cookie?
4. Favorite Dance Move?
5. Favorite European Country?
6. Favorite Friend?
7. Favorite Good Memory?

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Science Saturday: Peppermint, Milkweed, and Queen Anne's Lace!

(Some peppermint from our garden!)

We absolutely LOVE peppermint! Currently we have peppermint, citrus mint, chocolate mint, spearmint, and lemon mint, growing in our garden!

A few interesting facts:
  •   Peppermint is not native to the USA. It was brought over with English colonists. Peppermint was not native to England. Peppermint was a hybrid of two European mints (watermint and spearmint). 
  • Peppermint is not very good as cross-pollinating. Instead it sends out underground runners which sprout genetically identical peppermint.
  • Peppermint is probably one of the most well known flavors/scents
  • Milkweed has very deep roots which enables it to continue to grow no matter how many times it has been cut back or dug up.
  • Milkweed has a very unique way of pollinating. The surface of the flower is slippery and designed to have insect legs slide down until one of them has landed into a small hole in which pollen sacs are hidden. When and if the insect can get free, it transfers the pollen to another milkweed plant.
  • Throughout every stage of it's life, it is edible! (If you want to eat it, if I were you, I'd research it to know how to prepare and eat it, etc.).
  • Queen Anne's Lace is one of the most common abundant wildflowers! It's named after Queen Anne of England. We've all heard the story of how the red flower in the middle of the flower is a drop of blood from where "she pricked her finger while working on her lace."
  • Queen Anne's Lace is related to carrots which is part of the parsley family! Celery, parsnips, parsley, dill, caraway, fennel, coriander, cumin, and anise (one of my favorite spices) are also related.
  • Despite it being a wildflower, Queen Anne's Lace has a delightful scent!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Throwback Tuesday: Kay Thompson

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Kay Thompson, (picture from the musical Funny Face ), was a charming actress, author, and singer. I absolutely LOVE her in Funny Face! Her comedic expressions and classic style of acting make it highly enjoyable! She, Fred Astaire and Audrey Hepburn were great co-stars. She is also the author of the Eloise books!

"Let's give 'em the old pizazz!"

 Displaying Maggie Prescott.jpg

"Lettie, take an editorial! "To the women of America...!" No, make it to the women everywhere. "Banish the black, burn the blue, and bury the beige. From now on, girls, think pink!""

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Science Saturday: Galls, Herring Gulls, and Hairy Cap Moss

(A Gall from our yard...the top of the stem broke...)

A few interesting things:
  •             Galls are an abnormal growth of plant tissue caused by something other than the plant itself. Most commonly caused by insects but they are also caused by mites, nematodes, bacteria, fungi, and viruses.
  • The Goldenrod Gall is caused by a small fly that lays an egg on the stem of the Common Goldenrod. As it grows it forms a solid spherical gall around itself to protect it and feed it.\
  • Galls are wonderful for protection, but some birds and rodents can see that they are holding something "yummy" inside, and will eat the contents.
  • Herring Gulls are one of the most common gull along the Atlantic Coast. They have migrated inland, and have been found by the Great Lakes, the Mississippi and other large bodies of water.
  • They were protected at the beginning of the 20th century because of low numbers, but since then, they've increased in number and have no need for such protection.
  • Herring Gulls are ground nesters, so they prefer to be on islands where predators are few. It takes 25-27 days for an egg to hatch. Then the parents feed them regurgitated food until they are old enough to take care of themselves.
  • Hairy Cap Moss grows in thick spongy beds on the forest floor. It should be called "Mattress moss" because of how soft it is! ;~)
  • Moss is unique in it's ability to remain dormant for extended periods of time, yet still be alive when it receives water again.
  • Moss is good for reviving areas that have been devastated by natural causes. Because of their unique ability to adapt, they can revitalize areas stricken by forest fires, floods, volcanoes, and other natural catastrophes! 

Friday, August 8, 2014

Our Camping Adventures!

Now I could type everything up about our fun camping, OR I could just share my Mommy's wonderful blog posts about camping with you! :~D

I'll wait hear while you read!

We must admit, we had way too much fun with Winslow!

In fact he told me he was already planning ideas for next years trip!!

I wonder what's in store!?!?!

A Wonderful Round of Applause!

A wonderful round of applause to my dear friends who took time to write and share guest posts with you all!

In case you missed them:

Thank you for the time you took to write such lovely posts! 

If you haven't read these, I encourage you to do so!


Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Bustling Busyness

We arrived home from camping. We were unpacking the cars and putting away stuff so we could get dinner ready. In the midst of the bustling busyness, I noticed that T-Bug was not around. The other 3 girlies were at a friend's house across the street, but T-Bug was no where to be found. I looked around the house and found her sitting in the middle of porch surrounded, on 3 sides, by bags. She was just sitting there playing with a couple princesses and a Sweet Streets hotel.

It struck me how life can be so busy, yet you can still find time for the little things. She was not bothered by the bustle around her. In fact she completely tuned it out.

Tune out the busyness today; find a quiet place. 

Read, sip some tea, study your Bible, pray, or just sit.

Psalm 46:10a
Be still, and know that I am God.

Guess what I bought?!?!?

Remember I said I ordered a new book?

Well, I read this book last year and loved it....!!!

So with a gift card to Barnes and Noble:


Heehee! I'm really excited! :~D

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Throwback Tuesday: Amy Carmichael

Amy Carmichael is one of the most well-known missionaries. She worked in the city of Belfast for a while, starting a Church for "shawlies". "Shawlies" were women/girls who worked in the mills who didn't have hats to wear to Church. After serving in Ireland for many years, she heard the testimony of Hudson Taylor, which convinced her of her call to be a missionary. She joined the Church missionary society, and served in a few places for short stints of time. Finally she went to India. She served in India for 55 years.

“One can give without loving, but one cannot love without giving” 

Someone asked......

Someone asked me what dance means to me: 

Dance is my life, 

passion, in my blood, 

part of me, 

every inch of my toes, 

every step that I take, every 

song that I hear I choreograph mentally, 


and emotionally, 

my heart beats with the feet that 

fly over the floor, 

whirling, twirling, until th

 music ends and I start again.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Books, glorious Books!

(Look at the new book I just got!!!! I can't wait until I get the other one I ordered!.....I'll post a picture when it does ;~D )

Janette Oke: A Heart for the Prairie by Laurel Oke Logan
Speaking from Among the Bones by Alan Bradley
Dana's Valley by Janette Oke
The Proposal by Lori Wick
The Weight of Glory by C.S. Lewis
The Rescue by Lori Wick
Only Fifty Years Ago by Gladys Hasty Carroll 
The Visitor by Lori Wick
The Dead in Their Vaulted Arches by Alan Bradley
The Pursuit by Lori Wick 
Laura: The Life of Laura Ingalls Wilder by Donald Zochert 
A Prisoner and Yet by Corrie Ten Boom
The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom
The Sunroom by Beverly Lewis
The Lord is my Shepherd by Debbie Viguie 
Ohio Brides by Cara C. Putman.
Anne of Avonlea by L.M. Montgomery 
Anne of the Island by L. M. Montgomery
Around the World in 80 Days by Jules Verne 
Anne of Windy Poplars by L.M. Montgomery
Anne's House of Dreams by L.M. Montgomery
Walking on Water by Richard Paul Evans
Anne of Ingleside by L.M. Montgomery
Forevermore by Cathy Marie Hake
Love Finds You in Folly Beach South Carolina by Loree Lough
He Chose Nails by Max Lacado 
Making Rounds with Oscar by David Dosa M.D
The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux
The Phantom of Manhattan by Frederick Forsythe 
Five Weeks in a Balloon by Jules Verne
Chinese Cinderella by Adeline Yen Mah
The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
Adventures in the Wilderness by William H.H. Murray
Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R. Tolkien
From the Earth to the Moon by Jules Verne
Around the Moon by Jules Verne
Code of Honor by Sandy Dengler
Hattie Big Sky by Kirby Larson
Power of Pinjarra by Sandy Dengler
Taste of Victory by Sandy Dengler
East of the Outback by Sandy Dengler
Amish Society by John A. Hostetler 
Hattie Ever After by Kirby Larson

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Science Saturday: Raspberries, Snapping Turtles and Bullfrogs, oh my!

Winslow LOVES raspberries! He was so excited when he heard that it would be one of the topics for Science Saturday! T-Tot actually picked some to go with dinner today! Mmmhhhhmmm good!

A few interesting things about Raspberries, Snapping Turtles, and Bullfrogs:

  • Raspberry bushes have a 2 year growth pattern. The 1st year the canes grow. The 2nd, they bear fruit. After they produced their berries, the 2nd year canes die.
  • Raspberries (and Blackberries) are actually not berries. A true berry has seeds in the center. Some examples of true berries are oranges, lemons, grapes, and tomatoes.
  • Raspberry prickers aren't as sharp and poky as Blackberry prickers.
  • Most turtles are slow, but comparatively Snapping Turtles are "fast". Their neck and head move quite quickly. Which is an advantage for when they are snapping at people or things.
  • When Snapping Turtles are in the water they are not as aggressive as if they are on land.
  • Snapping Turtles' shells grow to be about 1ft long. Occasionally they will be larger than that. They also range from about 10-20lbs. In a few select cases they've gotten up to 80lbs. 
  • Bullfrogs usually don't awaken from hibernation until late spring.
  • Bullfrogs are well-known for their deep resonating vocal calls they make. 
  • Bullfrog tadpoles hatch in about 4-5 days after they are laid. It takes 2 years for them to become an adult, and another 2 years for them to mature and repeat the cycle.