We had glorious weather in February leading to an acceleration of signs of spring. We have moved from talking about buds to talking about sprouts and we have added
sweet cicely to our list of young edibles that already includes chickweed, miners lettuce, bitter cress, heal all, and cleavers. We ate our first raw nettle leaf last
week and started adding fresh nettle leaves to our morning tea. We recently ate the first evergreen huckleberry flower buds and red huckleberry leaves.
We have seen some birds up close this month including the towhee, golden-crowned kinglets, song sparrow, and vireo. The birds have changed to their spring territorial
and breeding songs, which are quite uplifting. The squirrels have been chattering in the doug fir trees and we can always tell where they have been hanging out by the
evidence they leave behind (piles of torn apart doug fir cones).
We’ve had a couple of fires this month and got to roast salal leaves. We are looking forward to using the campfire popcorn popper that Robin sent us. When Robin
visited, she brought us some wild pecans from N. Carolina and we got a chance to crack them open with a rock one day.
We have enjoyed a lot of mud play this month and have created descriptive terms for the various muds we encounter, including spotty mud, silky smooth mud, clay mud,
gooey mud and sticky mud. We are also challenging ourselves to list all of the descriptive terms for various types of rain and wind.
The angle of the sun has noticably changed and we are able to find more sun spots to relax in for longer periods of time. We have been continuing with alot of
imaginative play and storytelling. The children like to play family and they love to play that we are cooking and baking yummy treats in the forest. We continue to
enjoy pulling the bark off decaying logs and have found alot more worms, grubs and insects underneath since it has warmed up. The jumping bugs are very active and the
other day we saw a bright green stink bug.
We have talked alot about the various parts of plants (root, stem, leaves, flowers, seeds) and trees (root, trunk, bark, leaves, sap, cones/flowers, seeds, and crown)
and their various functions. We’ve talked about mold and mushrooms as those start to proliferate. We are continuing our discussion of how soil is formed and where rain
comes from and where it goes. We just began finding baby sword ferns hiding in their “nests” at the base of the mature clumps.
We have all been more active and animated with the warming weather, along with all the other forest creatures!
By Erin Kenny ©2010