Friday, April 1, 2016

Artwork!

There is always a lot of artwork going on around our house. The neighbor girls often come over here to paint because they never paint at their house. We seem to always be painting, drawing and coloring here. We go through a lot of paper, pencils and markers as well as paint. Here are a few of the things we have been doing.

 We have been listening to the Chasing Vermeer book and so of course had to get out some of his artwork to look at. I decided to try to draw the milk maid picture.
 Here is a closer look at my sketch.
 Here is a sketch Molly did of her Dad sitting on the couch.  She did this one while we were all sitting around talking with some guests.

 Here is Ian's artwork. He did this one for class. It was supposed to explain something about Mercy and he made a little comic strip about him going babysitting for his sister when she wasn't feeling well.
 Usually Ian's drawings are much more mechanical in nature. He even breaks out the graph paper and rulers when he draws.
 Here are a few of Sophie's Egyptian art pieces. She has always loved this style!
 Even our History coloring pages have a little creative twist to them. Here is Alexander the Great with a Rainbow Dash flavor.

A few of Molly's paintings. She uses the whole page and lot of colors!

 She loves empty boxes. She cuts them up and uses them as canvas' to paint. She used these as backgrounds to her pony play.
Henry likes to cover the fridge with pictures of Minecraft animals and things. 

Sophie doesn't let me take pictures of much of her artwork. She has been going through a large sketchbook about every two months. She draws all the time but is very leery of showing it off to many people. She is getting very good at drawing princesses, dragons and ponies! One day hopefully she will let me take some pictures of her artwork.

Our Minimal Easter

I have to admit our Easter was rather subdued this year. I just never got around to planning anything that extensive. In face Sophie was the one who planned our Easter morning Scavenger Hunt this time. I only provided some eggs to boil and dye the day before and some bubbles and candy for the "prize" at the end of the scavenger hunt that morning. 





 Sophie spent some time the day before Easter coming up with scriptures that she could use as clues to send the kids around the house gathering clues until they came finally to the end and the basket of prizes. It turned out really nice and the only problem was that Molly really wanted to find eggs but was never quick enough to get the clue before one of her brothers.




 Part of the issue was that for the past two weeks I have been suffering with allergies and have had a headache, stuffy nose, and sore throat. I didn't want to do much of anything and planning something big just wasn't going to happen. I did make three pies to take to Grandma's house for Easter Dinner.  Two chocolate pudding pies with graham cracker  crusts (way easier that the usual pastry) and then a Lemon Meringue pie (because that is what Ian wanted and lemon just sounded good!)

A few more butterflies pictures

 Here is the cat very intent on keeping an eye on the butterflies.

 In this picture you can see the two crysalis' that I superglued onto a napkin. They are the only ones that didn't ever emerge.  The others that fell off due to Peezy's zealous interest in them came out but were damaged. So I guess we learned that once those crysalis' are hanging you can't knock them about too much or else they won't form correctly.



 Here is Molly releasing the last of our butterflies. She was sad to let them go but they seemed excited to get out into the warm sunshine.
 Here is one of our crumpled wings ones.  We let it go anyway. We placed it in a bush of flowers. Hopefully it enjoyed the freedom it had.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Butterflies

It had been a few years since we raised butterflies so I sent away for a few cups of caterpillars so we could watch the process of them changing into butterflies.
 These are actually pretty big compared to when they first arrived.  It took a little over a week for them to grow into big fat caterpillars. Then we noticed that they started o climb up to the top of the cups and hang.

 This was when the trouble started. We had the cups sitting on a desk or bookshelf in one of the rooms we are always in so we could look at them all the time. But once these caterpillars started hanging and changing into crysalis our cat started to get really interested in them. One morning I came downstairs to find some of the cups of caterpillars dumped on the floor. I was very sad to see that the fall broke them from their hanging position and then were loose on the floor of cup. We had four of them that been traumatized. I decided we would make this an experiment or at least a chance to observe what would happen.  I left two of them on loose on the floor of their cup and then two of them I tried supergluing back into their hanging position.  Then we just had to wait.
 We had 4 cups total which means we could have had 20 butterflies.  Waiting for them for the week which they changed in their crystalis' was hard. especially because the cat continued to be very interested in them. We couldn't leave the "butterfly garden" out where she could see it or she stalked it and was very intent on getting them.
 But eventually they started to emerge. The first ones appeared Easter Morning. New life on Easter morning seemed fitting!
 Here is one of the butterflies that emerged from one of the crysalis' that was left on the floor of the garden. It's wings were bent over and never could straighten out. We hoped it would be able to fix the problem when we saw it crawl to the edge and climb up the netting. But the wings never did go straight. The other one that emerged from the crysalis on the ground was in worse shape. It wings were totally crumpled and it never could get very far at all even to crawl to the netting. Poor butterfly!

 We still had many that emerged just fine and the kids all had a good time looking at them as they sat on their fingers opening and closing their wings.






 We don't know why this one only had one of the wings on its right side. It may have been damaged by the fall caused by our cat or it may have just been a fluke malformation. In any case we gave it a chance to see the world and left it outside on some flowers so it could at least feel like a butterfly for a bit.
 The cats interest was even greater once they were out of their crysalis so we needed to let them out into the world sooner rather than later or else we knew there would be more casualties.

 It is always sad to set them free and see them fly away never knowing if they make it in the real world. But at least they got to see the green grass and colorful flowers and feel the warm sun on their wings!
We loved raising our beautiful painted ladies.