Monday, April 20, 2009

Strange Matter

We visited the science exhibit called Strange Matter at Boonshoft earlier this month. We had fun exploring the world of materials science. Here's a lil video we took while there...

Strange Matter is a traveling exhibit that just might be coming to a science center near you. Here's their website where you can check out the schedule. They also have a lot of fun stuff on their site. Here you can find activities to do at home, like make your own magnetic liquid, bake ice cream without it melting, or learn about the history of sword making. Who knew materials science could be so facinating?!

The exhibit is only at Boonshoft until May 3rd, so we definitely want to make it back before it moves on.

Earth Day: Earth Mosaic

In this week's Photojojo newsletter, I read about an Earth Day photography project that is asking for participants! From the newsletter...

Got big plans for Earth Day?

Gonna build a windmill out of recycled soda cans? Or modify your
car to run on potato peelings and hope?

Yeah, sure you are. How about something that’s simple enough to
actually DO?

Something like taking a day-in-the-life portrait of the whole entire

You can read the rest of the article here.

Basically, Earth Mosaic is asking people to go out and take pictures on Earth Day, Wednesday, April 22, 2009. Choose your best one and email it to them! You can read more about it by clicking on their logo below.

We are having rainy days here, but we plan on going out and taking pictures, and the girls will be able to pick out which is their favorite photo they took to send in for the Earth Mosaic project.

What about you?

Dyeing Eggs, Latvian-Style

We attended a workshop on how to dye eggs using the Latvian method of using onion skins and other natural objects to decorate and dye the eggs.

Click here to read our post from two years ago when we attended this same event.

The first thing we did was to take a square piece of fabric and put a small pile of dried onion skins on top. We used yellow onion skins. The next step was to decorate the eggs using flowers, leaves, herbs, anything we wanted. We wet the egg to make the items stay in place.

Next we put some more onion skins on top of the egg and gathered the material to enclose the egg. We then tied string around it several times to keep everything closed up and in place.

Mark used a fine netting fabric for his. He did not surround it with onion skins, but instead, the egg would pick up the color from other eggs while they boiled.

After the eggs boiled in their cloth and onion blankets, they were cooled in ice water, unwrapped, rinsed, dried...and voila!

The girls also made and decorated some paper baskets.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Chef Livy

If you need something chopped, go to Livy! She's been honing her knife wielding skills.
She made a delicious pasta salad for us!

Wacky Mac

Kidney Beans



Green Pepper



Zesty Italian Salad Dressing

Spring Park Days

We've had warm days, and not so warm days. Typical spring weather.

Olivia will now tackle the rock climb by herself...with me far far away. She used to have me right behind her to make her feel safe. Not anymore!

Another park day, and another park...beautiful sunny day, fun playground equipment available...but the girls instead played with the bugs. They said they were saving them. The bugs were on the slide and they didn't want anyone squishing them. What thoughtful girls!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Salamander Search

We signed up for a Salamander Search class at the end of March. Unfortunately, our nature center canceled the event due to a naturalist being sick, but we decided to head out anyway and try our luck finding the little critters. Before leaving we looked through our Amphibians of Ohio book and read up about them. We learned about the endangered ones, the lungless, the mole salamanders, and the mudpuppies and waterdogs. We also visited the Ohio Salamander Web, part of, and looked at photos and read more on where to look for the little buggers.

Unforunately we weren't finding any vernal pools. We'd have to wait until it rained a bit more. But we looked around anyway. The girls had fun looking under logs and found some other things lurking around in the damp darkness. They found millipedes, centipedes, fungi, and worms. We also heard and saw woodpeckers, cardinals, chickadees, and coopers hawks soaring above.

Georgia is showing Olivia a worm she found.

and I thought this was pretty, found under a log.

Now that it's the beginning of April we have been getting a lot of rain. We'll have to go searching the vernal pools that are sure to be full of life about now.