Our Weekend on the Trail

This may be the most beautiful spring we’ve had here in California since I was a kid. Flowers everywhere, green (although slightly browning in certain areas already) for miles, mild temps, bugs and birds everywhere. It’s just been beautiful so far. Of course we’ve been out and about as much as we can. Jeff is off of work this month (work has been slow going lately- thus the increase in my “making and selling”). But together as a family, we’ve been enjoying the good life- out in the wild.
This past weekend, we did a little hike to a waterfall. It was glorious! How has your spring been going?

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Portrait Project

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Eloise: “I’m going to be an entomologist, because I love bugs.”

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Eloise: We went to the zoo this week and you brought your sketchpad. Usually I have to remind you to take it out, but this day, you all of a sudden took it out on your own and started sketching the turtles. Then again, when you watched a sparrow taking a dirt bath. Of course it made your art loving mama beam, to see you drawing independently.

“The 52 project, a photo of Ellie, once a week, every week in 2017”

Portrait Project

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Eloise: Enjoying the spring sun and flowers. My little butterfly girl!

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eloise: You’ve been doing a lot of hiking with me and your friends. Fearless and always running ahead. However, we got you up some switch backs and you were very worried about looking down. “Afraid of heights Lou?” I asked her smiling. She clung to my arm and kept saying, “too high, too high!”
When those little four year old feet were back on solid ground, you were just fine and back to your silly, fierce self. But, it was so interesting seeing my fearless girl so worried about heights. I have to remember you are still only “four and a  half.”

Spring joy!

The glory of spring is upon us! We’ve been out and about enjoying one of the most beautiful spring’s I can remember here in California. Hikes to find wildflowers with friends, having picnics by the ocean and watching the pelicans fly above us, and celebrating my Mom’s birthday by heading up north to find sand dollars on a special, hidden beach. We’ve been in and out of creek beds, finding frogs and tiny toads… spotting bluebirds and heron and egrets. It’s been a beautiful spring so far. I so hope the breezy weather and green hills stick around for awhile. We’re loving it so very much!
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Dinosaur Ellie

Oh this child of mine has a new obsession – Dinosaurs! It all started a couple months back, one Saturday, when Jeff was watching a documentary on “Spinosaurus”. Usually Ellie is too busy playing, to bother with watching Dada shows, but this one sparked an interest. She sat and took the whole show in, mesmerized by these extinct giants that once roamed the earth. After that, she wanted to know as much as possible about dinosaurs and the interest has been going strong ever since. We have our home school group and we also belong to a little nature hiking group as well. These girls were also very into dinosaurs and we were lucky enough to join in on their “dino day” a couple weeks ago. There was a dig and fossils (borrowed from our local natural history museum’s lending library) and some fun build your own dinosaur kits as well. The other moms did a fantastic job setting everything up for the kids. I sang a couple of dino songs and we brought some dinosaur books as well to share.
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Ellie and the other girls had an absolute blast! It’s been really neat to watch this interest blossom and develop. We do a bit of project work at home as well and Ellie decided on her own, that she wanted her project to be “writing a dinosaur story”. With my help, I have transcribed two whole chapters of her dinosaur story. It’s quite fantastic coming from this four and a half year old’s head. She’s been illustrating her story as well and I will have to write up a whole other post about it, because its just too good not to share.

We did take Ellie to the Natural History museum in LA when she was pretty young, but we thought it would be neat to bring her back, since her new interest is so ripe. So today we headed out to LA and first went to the La Brea Tar Pits and then to the Natural History Museum. It was a long, busy day, but I think one Ellie will treasure.
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I know there is so much more to learn and so much more to explore and we certainly will!  Ellie wants a dinosaur birthday party this year and how in the world can we say no to that?!

Ladybug Love

This week for home school class we explored lady bugs. We have been visiting a lovely nature spot and the girls have noticed lots of lady bugs around the area, so we thought we’d do a little more in depth study on the local lady beetles. We found plenty and decided to sketch them and make our own ladybugs out of beeswax modeling clay. We read a lady bug story and used to books to look at all the different types of lady birds there are in the world. There was even a lady bug obstacle course built! All of the ladybugs we caught that day were of course set free after we were done with our lesson. It was a lovely cool spring morning of exploration and play.

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Portrait Project

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Eloise: About five months away from being a five year old! You are still very spunky and very assertive of your independence (which of course makes my days a bit challenging). You are dedicated to animals and learning as much as you can about them. You are newly fascinated with dinosaurs (“I like them because they are cool Mama”). You sing all day long and when you aren’t singing, you are talking and telling stories. You play hard with your friends. I find some days when we are out with friends, I only catch glimpses of you because you are so busy and in deep play with them. You love to cuddle with me at the end of the day though and tell me all of your “highs” and that you “don’t have any lows today Mama”, beaming proudly.
You are my light little girl, my high… every day.