Thursday, December 22, 2016

Our nature notebook--first day of winter

winterberries

We ventured out to the great outdoors for a little nature walk on this very chilly first day of winter here in Oregon. I thought this would be a great day to get out this week, but we didn't prepare for the 35 degrees and foggy weather good enough, so we didn't make it too far. The little weather app said the sun would come out and reach 40*, I should have known it wouldn't actually happen that way.

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The river was very full and flowing and everything looked cold and bare.

So with no gloves or hats, shorts (on the boys because they insist), we walked a short 15 minute walk. Our focus for this walk was winter berries. We found some holly. So festive! The scientific name for this plant is Aquifoliaceae Ilex.

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We found these pretty white berries that almost look like popcorn from a distance called a Snowberry or Symphoricarpos albus.

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These boys just wanted to throw sticks in the water. I would have let them, but I was too cold to just stand around. We needed to keep moving!

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Alex found this cool log. I told him he couldn't bring it home, and he gave me the sad lip. I decided to let him bring it home since it was actually kind of cool, and now we have a log. We might do some crafting with it.

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After our walk we went to the Salem library and did some winter crafts for their first day of winter special event. I don't think we'll get any nature journal pages done for this outing because Christmas is just around the corner, but I am challenging myself and anyone who wants to join me to get out and do more nature exploration. Even just for a simple walk. I haven't been getting out and doing nature studies with the kids, and it seems like it is becoming more challenging to get out as we get busier and busier. So, for 2017 I am hoping to make it more of a point to get out and be in nature more, as a family and for learning. I am hoping this will be the first of many (possibly weekly) posts. Share with me in the comments if you've done anything outdoors this week!

Need some inspiration for where to start outside?
I got the inspiration for a winter berry walk at Handbook of Nature Study blog Winter berries challenge. I am amazed at the wealth of ideas she has over there!

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