Wednesday, October 05, 2005


Yesterday I heard the weather forcast that we would have one last day of the Indian Summer we have been enjoying with temperatures in the mid 80's and sunny skies. So I sent the following email to some of my homeschooling friends...

Anyone interested in meeting at Nisbet Park in Loveland tomorrow and letting the kids get in the Little Miami River and explore how "healthy" it is? There is river access right off the playground and a quiet "feeder" area for the kids to explore. My kids are dying to use the information they have collected at recent stream studies to assess the river and it looks like it will be HOT (87) tomorrow (and it may be the last warm day we have this fall!). Mine will probably have on swimtrunks (boys) and shorts over swimsuits (girls).

The plan would be to meet around 11 AM.....get in the river, play, then break for lunch, play some more...if the kids want, they could paint river rocks (we will supply paint, paintbrushes and newspaper). There are picnic tables and playground equipment. Public restrooms. Plenty of shade!

What to bring: your own nets, a container for holding what you collect (bucket, dishpan, plastic storage box) while you study it, shoes for getting wet, a towel for drying off, sunscreen, picnic lunch, snacks, water (there are water fountains by the restrooms).

The park in located in historic downtown Loveland. To reach the park, take I-275 to exit #52 (Loveland Indian Hill) at the bottom of the exit ramp, turn left onto Loveland Maderia Rd. Follow for a while (you will pass McDonalds and the Elementary School and the post office) turn RIGHT onto W. Loveland (there is a minimart on this corner and an old Movie Gallery building on the opposite corner).....follow W. Loveland through 2 traffic lights and turn LEFT into the parking area for Nisbet Park at the flashing crosswalk (for the bike trail) right after The Mill Coffehouse...if you cross over the railroad tracks, you went too far....once you pull into a parking space, the playground equipment is in the back left hand corner if you are looking at the park. The kids and I may walk (we only live about 2 blocks away), so don't think we aren't there if you don't see the van when you pull in.

Email me if you think you may want to join us! Feel free to pass the invitation onto anyone that you think might be interested....the more the merrier!

Two families decided to join us...the Hensleys and the Lelands. Of course I got there and realized I had left the identification keys and field guides at home, but since we lived so close (literally 3 blocks away), I ran home and grabbed them! We looked like we knew what we were doing, field guides in hand, nets, collection tubs!

We went down to the river around 11:30 AM and the kids were eager to get in. We decided that even though the main part of the river was low that we would stay in the side area so we didn't have to worry about the current. The kids eagerly dug in and found lots of critters.....mayfly larva, leeches, crayfish, minnows, water pennies, snails and snail eggs just to name a few. We even found a small snake who had unfortunately been injured (he died despite the kids trying to "save" him) and a rather large piece of snake skin. Emily also found a cool rock with many fossils in it. The kids swam in the water. Will even enjoyed himself, splashing around and "fishing" with his net! He got himself totally soaked and was sandy and cold so I ended up stripping him naked and carrying him in the sling...he was so happy to be "ala natural"!

After we played for about an hour and a half, we went up and ate lunch. The kids played on the playground for a while. The kids were eager to go back down in the river so we went back in the water. When we walked back down, there were a couple kingfishers flying and calling along the river. I had never seen one in person before, they really were a sight to behold!

The kids explored some more, swam a bit, buried each other in the sand. It was just such a joy to watch them play, see them connected with the earth, being kids! All 3 of us moms took lots of pictures, I can't wait to see them all!

Every collected cool rocks and once we were done playing in the water we went back into the park and we painted rocks. Emily made a beautiful rainbow on her rock, Hannah painted a chinchila. True Hensley painted a very COOL face/head on her rock (I told her she should enter it in the state fair).

Afterwards we headed home and then to the dance studio. Sophie had her ballet class and Emily had ballet technique. From there we swung by the house to pick up Hannah, Grant and Jacob for religion classes up at church. Once they got home we ate dinner and then MIRACLE of MIRACLES I got to watch an ENTIRE episode of LOST without ANYONE interupting me! I think that is a first!

Hope eveyone else had a glorious day too!

1 comment:

Traci said...

Sounds like a wonderful day. Glad you got out and enjoyed it. An uninterupted tv show?! What is that? I sure wouldn't know and I only have two!