Thursday, February 24, 2011

One of the perks of being involved with a homeschool group is field trips. We have some awesome families in our group that are involved in different things. One family arranged a field trip for us recently to Scicon, which is a school campus that is used for nature study. This field trip was specifically to learn about local salamanders, also known as California Newts. This is the time of year that they migrate to lay their eggs.

Adult salamanders live on land in lush areas, near shade and water so their skin does not dry out. They migrate to the place where they were born to lay their eggs. But, they do not lay eggs every year. We followed a trail along the stream where the salamanders are know to come to lay their eggs.
Nate loves the outdoors and was in his element.
One of many salamanders we found.

Nate was not interested in holding it.
Brian did. This it Tina our salamander guide.
Nate pointed out all the waterfalls along the way.
Nate in the middle of the stream.
Salamanders have an interesting courting ritual. Several males will surround one female, trying to get their scent on her. This is called a salamander ball. The males have previously left a sperm sac nearby. The female will choose her mate and find his sperm sac to fertilize her eggs.
There were about 5-6 salamanders in this ball.
Another friend we spotted on the trail.
Just a pretty picture.
Spotted this guy hiding under the rock.
Another salamander ball, in shallower water.
And one of my favorite photo from the day. Just because. My guys on the path together, not trying to kill each other.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Today was a special homeschooling day for Nate. Dad stayed home from school (he's a teacher) because we've had some plumbing issues and he needed to be here when the plumbers were here. So, dad worked with Nate on his school work today.

Nate also got to see the plumbers work at our house today. They did a lot of digging. They ran a camera down the pipe. Too bad Nate didn't get to see that today. I saw it yesterday when they were here and it was pretty cool. Well, it would have been cool, if it wasn't our pipe, because there were a lot of tree roots in it. (Dad just told me that Nate was at Lego Club when they ran the camera today.)

Nate also got to go to Lego Club today with the local homeschool group. Big brother Joshua took him today. Homeschooling has become a family affair. Nate is really blessed to have so many people supporting him and taking part in his education.