In Which We Are Watched Like Hawks

Boy in Giant Bird Nest

The Cascades Raptor Center is offering free admission this week last week, in celebration of their 25th anniversary. "Through wildlife rehabilitation and public education, Cascades Raptor Center fosters a connection between people and birds of prey. Our goal is to help the human part of the natural community learn to value, understand, and honor the … Continue reading In Which We Are Watched Like Hawks

Skunk Cabbage at McGowan Creek

Lysichiton americanus along McGowan Creek, near where the McKenzie river meets the Willamette River.

Blood Moon Lunar Eclipse, October 8, 2014

Blood Moon Lunar Eclipse, October 8, 2014

Exploring the Solar System on Bicycles

Solar System Model

The Eugene, Oregon Scale Model of the Solar System was created by a father and son to show relative sizes and distances between the planets and the Sun.  The planets are steel balls set upon pyramids with information panels positioned along Eugene's Willamette river Riverbank bike path.  The scale is 1:1 billion and dimensions are taken from the … Continue reading Exploring the Solar System on Bicycles

Sand Dunes and Coastal Native Plants

Sand Dunes and Coastal Native Plants

Gaultheria shallon (Salal) native Rubus ursinus (Pacific Blackberry) native Achillea millefolium (Yarrow) native Maianthemum dilatatum (False Lily-of-The Valley) native Bracken fern (Pteridium aquilinum) native Blechnum spicant (Deer Fern) native Typha latifolia (Cattail) native   Digitalis purpurea (foxglove) native

Skunk Cabbage, and Cobra Lilies, and Man-eating Plants! Oh, my!

darlingtonia cobra lily, skunk cabbage, salal, deer fern, man eating plant

Our visit to Darlingtonia State Natural Site was the perfect supplement to Apologia's Exploring Creation with Botany Lesson #3 section about carnivorous plants.  This place happens to be the only Oregon State Park for the purpose of preserving a single species.  Darlingtonia californica (cobra lily) is very rare and the only carnivorous plant in Oregon. Lysichiton americanus (skunk cabbage) is a Pacific Northwest native plant that … Continue reading Skunk Cabbage, and Cobra Lilies, and Man-eating Plants! Oh, my!

Almost a Backyard Campout: Trying to Watch the Camelopardalids Meteor Shower

Mom & Kids reading Astronomy book under the stars

We tried to observe the Camelopardalids Meteor Shower last night.  NASA's information was clear that since nobody has seen the shower from this comet before, there was no way to know what to expect.  Also, the viewing map was clear that in our area of the Pacific Northwest, the weather wasn't optimal.  We couldn't make a little … Continue reading Almost a Backyard Campout: Trying to Watch the Camelopardalids Meteor Shower

Spring Wildflowers Along the Willamette River

Thimbleberry (Rubus parviflorus)

This is likely to become a series of posts about wildflowers. I'm very interested in our native plants, wildflowers and edible plants in particular.  These aren't all necessarily indigenous.  I'll be looking for other varieties, and hopefully I have a camera handy when I find them! Cow Parsnip (Heracleum maximum) This native plant towers above my daughter's head … Continue reading Spring Wildflowers Along the Willamette River