Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Happy Cast Day!

Just FYI that's red, not pink... Mom isn't all that great at color balancing!

Today was the "exciting" day of cast-application! After the initial upset about having to get a full arm cast instead of just the short cast, it went well enough all things considered! Four weeks of this and then hopefully it will be ready to come off (in time for birthday parties and stuff!!) Wish us luck that we can keep this sucker dry... with the way the weather has been lately, the pool is the least of our worries.

Anyone want to come autograph it?? :D

Friday, May 25, 2012

Amber Huntin' in the U.S.A.

Today was a great day for amber hunting in the PNW! After a full week of springtime raining, it cleared up for us today and we had a lovely field trip with the Little Man's class.

The hike was about a mile and a half through an absolutely gorgeous forest where once a coal mine existed (and blew up) a smidge over 100 years ago. Now it's a State Forest, and a nice place to hunt for amber and fossils (if you have a permit to do so... please don't go ripping up the ground in the area without asking!)

This is Geologist Bob, who was a consulting Geologist for many years before retiring and starting his much more important career of teaching 3rd graders about Geology! :D He is a very interesting person, and of course very knowledgeable... and great with kids!

Little Man had to pose for a shot on the trail ;)

One of many pictures of the Amber-hunting-grounds. I had to show the muddiness (and L.M.s proximity to said-mud) and the steepness. It was quite an ankle-twister but we all managed to find a spot to plunk down and search. Because of the recent rains, there was already a lot of amber and Jet on the top! Just had to look for the sparkles and then pick it up!

Here's my lovely wee pieces

I don't have any pics of the fossil-hunting part because I was one of the adults assigned a hammer. I felt like Thor a little bit with a bunch of kids bringing me shale to pound on and see if there was anything fossil-ey inside! Mostly we found Meta Sequoia needles, but supposedly if you are lucky you can find a clam fossil! We all tried very hard but it was all about the ancient sequoias. L.M. Found a cedar though! It's nice to be a little different ;)
 The black squiggle in the middle there is the cedar needle

Here's the Jet and Amber I carried for the class collection. I wanted to take it home and wash it off a bit. You can kind of see how different the colors can be in the amber, we had kids finding yellow, orange, red and BLUE amber (I had no idea there was such a thing as blue amber).
All in all it was a very pleasant day and I am so grateful that our class was able to do this! Thanks to everyone involved in making it happen!!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Owls and Anatomy

The Little Man is covering the Human Skeleton in school for science these days. Always a cool subject in my book... however one day this week he missed school, and the highlight of that was we got to bring home some science homework!!!

I give you Owl Pellet dissection 101:
First you observe the pellet in it's wholeness ("hard and very rough... and brown" were the decided upon adjectives... I thought those were well chosen).

Then you start to take it apart.

 Delicacy is key here, the contents of the pellet are very fragile!

Then at some point, Mom remembers the forgotten digital microscope he got for Xmas a few years back! Go Mom!

Wow Mom, homework is fun! (Which is what I was thinking in my head while I was taking the picture... he never actually said that, but you can keep a secret, right?)

Picture of the still-very-hairy mouse bone:

The full assortment we excavated from the furry mass:

Found: one jaw bone, a couple of vertebrae, definite femur and tibia... and a few things we had to assume were some radius/ulna. We also think we found a scapula, but it was really hard to tell.

Then he identified and placed the bones and taped them on the paper. Nice work Dude!

Can any of you remember 3rd grade homework that was so cool?? I sure don't!