8th November 2016 – Garden Snails

I was a bit demotivated today, but E, left to his own devices in the garden, dug out the soil from my Bay Tree pot with a stick. To distract him from this, I searched the garden for wildlife. We found numerous Slugs, Woodlice, Worms and Garden Snails. Unfortunately, Izzy couldn’t be persuaded to join in, though.

IMG_20161108_154933951Total wild time – E – 40 mins, Izzy – 0 mins

15th August 2016 – Sketching birds and using a key

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We read the Nature Project Book, which is a book I have had since childhood, in the garden and practised using the key in it to identify a Woodlouse, Fly, Slug and Moth. Izzy sketched a House Sparrow, which morphed into a ‘Princess Bird’. She also used her glue gun to stick a load of previously-collected, random, natural materials together to make a ‘bug hotel’.

Later, we went to the beach for an ice-cream. The sea was rough and we enjoyed feeling the spray from the waves hitting our faces.

IMG_20160815_111950355Total wild time – can’t remember but about an hour in total

12th August 2016 – Shooting stars and garden picnic

B woke Izzy at 1am to lie out in the hammock and watch the Perseid meteor shower, whilst I stayed in bed with E. It was a clear night and Izzy stayed awake long enough to spot half a dozen shooting stars. She told me all about it in great detail in the morning.

Later, we visited friends at their holiday cottage in Kilmington and had a picnic dinner in the garden, where there was a pond with Dragonflies and Water Boatmen. The kids stayed up way past their bedtime and were delighted to see the moon make an appearance. Jackdaws and Rooks flew home to roost overhead as the sky darkened and just as we were about to return home, we saw a bat.

Total wild time –  30 mins watching meteoroids (Izzy) and 3 hours having a picnic (Izzy and E).

14th June 2016 – Rain bugs

Izzy wanted to go bug hunting in the garden again today, so I let her and E loose with collecting jars and magnifying glasses. The highlight of the search was a Seven-spot Ladybird. The hunt turned into a rain dance and then descended into fighting over the pink, unicorn-adorned umbrella.

Later, whilst walking the dog, I picked a few elderflowers (not ideal weather for it, but hey ho) and for pudding we had Elderflower Scotch Pancakes (from a recipe in the Forager’s Kitchen), which B, E and I loved, but Izzy didn’t like (but then, she doesn’t really like any food unless it is in ice-cream form).

Total wild time: 1 hour 15 mins

13th June 2016 – Under the microscope

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Izzy and E captured minibeasts from the garden in collecting jars and then we examined them under the digital microscope (a Veho VMS-004 400x USB microscope to be precise). We looked at a Two-spot Ladybird, a Pill Woodlouse, a feather, an ant, a couple of snails and various plants. I think they probably enjoyed the hunt more than seeing things in close-up, but it kept them amused for almost an hour, before E got tired and we had to call it a day.

Total Wild Time: 50 mins