Monday, March 23, 2009

Maple Syrup and Birds

Maple Wood - Maple Syrup Days
Rum Village Nature Center -
Raptor Review Bird Program
*Field Trips*

Yesterday we had a family day of field trips and fun. It seems the end of the year gets here and school work is not looked at happily, so we try to do other things that would be just as educational as workbooks if not more.

We got up early and headed to Maple Wood in LaGrange for the Maple Syrup Days. We have never gone, so this was new to all of us. We enjoyed a wagon ride out in the maple woods to learn the process of tapping and gathering the syrup. Maple Woods has 300 and some trees tapped and 500 and some taps out. That's a really big job!

After taking our ride, we headed to the sugar making shack where we watched them boiling, stoking the fire, and getting that syrup made to bottle up and serve. Another big process! We enjoyed seeing old friends, Jim Carr and Mike Troyer working away and entertaining those of us taking the tour.

Then we stopped and picked up some friends to head to South Bend to Rum Village Nature Center for a program called Raptor Review. The lady doing the program is a bird rehabilitator and brought two owls with her. This picture is of a great horned owl. The children loved learning about the owls and getting to see real ones. We, of course, had to share with her our sighting of a bald eagle in Mongo, but I don't think she believed us. I guess I never blogged about that story. Well, we saw one anyways, and it was extremely neat!

After the program we decided to take a walk on two of the many trails in the park. We will have to come back here in the spring or summer to see all the plants, and take advantage of the great trails that they have. I think I should find out if there are any letterboxes in this park.

What a lovely day it turned out to be! Here are the children (from left to right) - Diella, Alegra, Zekaryah, Josiah, and Eliyahna. They had so much fun walking on trees that were laying down, running along, and eventually taking the walk slower to see what great things they could spy.

We took lots of pictures of the children, as you can see, and they had fun posing and being silly. What good friends!

Here is Eliyahna and Josiah taking a break along the trail enjoying the sunshine. Couldn't miss this cute photo opportunity.

And the group of them finding the best pose on this rock. I think it took them 10 minutes before they had figured out where everybody should be and how they should be posed for it. Funny! But it turned out quite cute and will be a good memory down the road. Now, when they get older where will baby Amalyah Brothers and baby ? Bovee be? Oh, we'll find room for them.