Friday, April 22, 2011

Day 21 - Flashlight Easter Egg Hunt

Our annual flashlight Easter egg hunt! 

Each year we converge on Serenity Gardens Park in Mansfield to "hide" hundreds of Easter eggs! 

We really don't have to do a lot of hiding, because the kids hunt for them after dark, using flashlights! 

Ready, Set.....Go! 

The actual hunt only takes a few minutes.  Some of the eggs are randomly scattered in the grass, and some are carefully placed under trees and cradled by bushes, but quickly they are all sought out.  

The first year I carefully sealed each one with reflective tape.  
Kids can just smell an Easter egg! 

My dad loved Easter egg hunts.  
We would have them all year long! 
Really, it was nothing in July to be down at the lake with some friends, and Dad call us over and say he had hidden 30 eggs and for us to find them. 
They were well hidden in the forest.  
Twenty acres of overgrown East Texas forest! 
Our only clue would be something like, "under a Chinquapin tree", or "in the branches of a Yaupon".  
He might provide a leaf sample if my friends were "newbies".  

He usually hid a dollar or two inside each one as an incentive.  
You learn your tree identification quickly when a few bucks and bragging rights are at stake! 

It should have amazed me how Dad knew 
the name of every tree and plant growing.  
But it didn't, I just took it for granted.  
Now I wonder who is going to teach my kids these things... 
Looks like I had better save my $1.00 bills.  

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Day 20 - Peter Rabbit Garden

Today Danielle stayed home sick, 
which was horrible because she missed school and didn't feel well. 
But by 11am she felt much better.  
As usual. 
What was nice was that we cuddled on the couch and read 
"The Complete Stories of Beatrix Potter". 
Well, we didn't read all the stories, just the ones involving that naughty little rabbit, Peter.  

Afterwards, we decided to make a "Peter Rabbit Garden", 
growing all of Peter's favorites from Mr. McGregor's garden.  
And I promise we will not even attempt to put any rabbits in a pie! 
We decided on a location that is not used for anything but our hobby of growing weeds. 

Then Danielle made a list of all the vegetables that we should include in our Peter Rabbit garden. 
We went to our local nursery. 
It's a dangerous place, any day.
But today Danielle had a list! 
I should have read the list first! 

Danielle was busy collecting everything on her list, 
while I was walking around looking at the ponds with Leo. 
They have 3 nice ponds, 
and fish! 
When we finally finished and came inside, 
Danielle and the nursery lady were carrying in a plum tree! 
Our garden is about 10X10! 
Thankfully, she was understanding! 
We got everything else on the list but blackberries.  

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Day 17: More kites, sorta, and go carts!

It is so windy here, we went outside to fly a mini kite Cole had received for his birthday! 
I loved the mini kites, but we only had one! 
(These pics were taken with my phone, kinda blurry)

Yesterday, we went to the Live Green Expo, 
which was all about living green.  
We watched professional kite fliers flying huge, expensive kites! 
We made a plastic bag sculpture, 
and got a list of creative things to do with plastic bags. 
This wasn't on the list! 
The kids loved it so much, the mini kite got laid down. 
Of course, the kids had to decorate their kites! 
Show offs! 

Then they decided to drive their go cart! 
Leo and I drew on the driveway with chalk. 

As I take this picture, I am saying a little prayer for their safety. 

Yes, that is John on the kids little dirt bike! 

Remember the movie "Space Balls". 
Look at that helmet! 

Yep, I'm a lucky girl! 

Day 16 Nature Challenge #5 Live Green Expo

Our next Nature Challenge was the Live Green Expo in Plano. 
We have never been, and were really looking forward to going! 

The first mission was a fun activity to make designs on light sensitive paper.  

After exposing the paper to light, you then let it set in water. 

We then had to go visit a vendor who sold solar panels.  
My husband also sells solar panels. 
We didn't tell him that, we just took our stamp. 

The second mission was to make a pinwheel, 
and go watch the professional kite fliers! 

Leo taking a break! 

The third mission was to pledge different ways to save water. 
And write it on a wall. 
Danielle is a pro at writing on walls. 
It was funny to find a place where it was encouraged! 

I have no idea why Albert Einstein in on a tricycle. 
Perhaps they were trying to say "It's smart to cycle.". 

Danielle is teaching Leo. 
My walls at home can attest that he is a quick learner! 

The next mission was to take trash and put in the proper recepticle. 

Solar car races! 
It wasn't a Nature Challenge Mission, but it sure was fun! 

No, it's not Elsie. 
She was there promoting an organic yogurt. 
They gave us free samples. I don't remember the name. 

This was the plastic bag sculptures. 
It was our last mission. 
It encouraged not throwing away plastic bags. 
And offered creative ideas for them.  

While I was busy at the plastic bag sculptures, 
Leo climbed on a lawn mower. 
Glad the keys weren't in it! 

We had such a great time! 

Leo's favorite part was riding the shuttle buses!