After having read and drooled, read and awed, and read and dreamed, we finally followed through with and completed our first Outdoor Hour Challenge from the Handbook of Nature Study blog.

We just took a walk through a part of our property and enjoyed what we saw, heard, smelled, and tasted. There was very little talking along the way (by mom directive, I have to admit).

We started by the barn on the racetrack and settled down as there was quite a bit of chaos regarding who was wearing what shoes and where matching shoes might be found… So we need to chill out.

Then we headed down into the less well-treaded paths and spit at webs and swatted at branches on the back side of the pond. It’s so funny what they notice. One noticed a red fungus and actually said,
“This is an interesting red fungus.” It was as if she’d read Anna Comstock’s Handbook of Nature Study.  One noticed a glass bottle on a broken limb of a tree and said, “Wook. Dis twee has grown a bottle. Oh. No. I hung it here.” Kids are pretty awesome.

As we came out of the woods and were headed back to the house via the road, they came upon the thing that interested them the most. To me, it looked like an American Painted Lady caterpillar, but I’ll have to do some research and have the kids help me figure it out…

And so by the time we made it back to the driveway we were back to our happy place. We rejoiced by eating from our wild muscadine vines.

This week we decided to study further the red fungus and the caterpillar, both of which I believe we can do with our Handbook of Nature Study as well as our extension sites. Won’t you join us?

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