Sunday, July 28, 2013

Week Ending 28 July

It doesn't feel like we've done an awful lot this week and I haven't kept any rough notes to jog my memory so be warned. What follows is a random and probably uninteresting list of what I recall from the past week.

* Lots of birding. The first was an ill -founded trip to a lake. Sadly the land around it was incredibly boggy and even in boots we couldn't make it to the shore. We did see lots of dotterels as we attempted to get closer to the shore but we couldn't really stand still to observe them since we were in danger of sinking! We'll return in spring when the number and variety of birds should be higher anyway and it will hopefully be drier! Second was a much more successful trip to a wetland. We just took a very relaxed stroll and spend a lot of time closely observing the cormorants and herons fishing and hunting. We also saw plenty of kingfishers - first time we've seen more than one at a time! Today we we visited an estuary north of town. Just a relaxed gentle walk and we were treated to a spectacular flying and fishing display by some terns - including one species I had never seen before (but Miss 12 had). We also fitted in a trip to the cygnets. They are moulting their down feathers at the moment and looking a little scruffy as a result. Their beaks are showing tinges of pink that will eventually darken to red and you can see patches of black on their bodies.

* Miss 12 made a post to the class blog for her on line bird class. She received some positive feedback from the teacher and some of the other students which was good. Hopefully - despite the technical issues that still plague us - this class will provide some bird-related interaction with kids her age. The local junior naturalists club is too young for her, while the average age of the ornithologists club (based on the one trip we've done with them so far) is considerably older!

* Mr 15 spend three afternoons volunteering at the museum helping with their school holiday programme.  He was working with the 4-7 year olds, and seemed to really enjoy the experience.

*There's been a lot of reading, cooking and game playing plus outdoor work ( moving and stacking firewood).

*The online homeschool planning course that I'm doing has been a little more useful to me this week and I'm starting to get re-enthused with new ideas, which is definitely a  good thing.

* Miss 12 had her first serious trampoline competition of the year. It was her first time competing in the 13-14 age group and her one and only chance to qualify for the National Championships later this year since she was still out injured for the previous qualifying events. While she wasn't pleased with her performance (she is very hard on herself) she came a very respectable 4th and easily exceeded the minimum qualifying score. So a good end to the week.

* Probably the best news was that dh's appeal against the decision to not fund surgery for his knee has been successful and the surgeon had a cancellation so he'll get the operation in a couple of weeks time. He's really looking forward to being able to walk pain-free again.


  1. Congratulations to your daughter on her place in the trampoline contest! Glad to hear that you are getting more out of your online class:) And so glad to hear that your husband may have some relief from pain so!

  2. Yay for your husband getting the operation he needs!!!

    I love how your family is so interested in the birding!

    I have tried planning so many times and it just never works for me....we get ahead or behind all the time!

    1. My take on this sort of planning is pretty low key and impossible to get behind on. Definitely not maths Mon-Thurs between 9 and 10 with the book finished by a set date sort of planning. All I'm really doing is looking at some skills that I think are ready to be developed and coming up with some ways they could be worked on over the next 6-10 weeks. After that I'll reassess. For instance the online bird class plus ornithology society meetings give the chance to take notes from an oral rather than written source. Other stuff is also relaxed eg we enjoy studying art so we (sometimes Miss 12 and sometimes me) pick an artist to concentrate on for a few weeks. Some we do lots with, others get less attention. It all depends on what I can find and how much we liek their work.

  3. OOOOhhhh! I like the idea of picking an artist. I also really like your way of planning...I never thought of doing it that way. i really want to work on writing this year...hmmm...maybe I will brainstorm...

    By the way, can I get your email? I like to be able to email responses to comments :) If you want to email me your email so it's not out on the internet, my email is :)

  4. I always love your nature pictures. I agree with Theresa, birding is one of those things that I LOVE the idea of but never seem to get around to doing. It seems as soon as I learn the name of a bird I forget it!!! YAY for the trampoline award. Keilee watched tons of trampoline videos after you pointed me in the right direction. She would love a trampoline and I am trying to save to get her one. I'm so glad your husband will be getting the surgery he needs. Happy Tuesday.

    1. I find it takes a few times of seeing a bird before I have it's name and identity set - especially the annoying ones that look very similar to another one, or look very differnt as juveniles compared to adults. Right now it is the calls I'm battling with.Just when I think I'm making progress I discover I've forgotten most of it.

  5. Thanks for visiting my blog today. We are just in the beginning stages of our new year as bird watchers. Can't wait to see what else unfolds.