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Thursday, January 21, 2016

Snow is Coming!

Finally a decent snow is coming our way. As we got ready for the morning, my youngest and I talked about sledding, snow forts, and snowmen. But it also means a lot of this:

I really don't mind. Show shoveling is great exercise!
(We'll see if my back agrees the next day.)
We will probably take time to catch & observe snowflakes if they are big enough. This is a lot of fun for all ages. Click the photo below to learn how.
Now, as the boys are off to school and I ease into the day with a warm cup of peach tea, I find myself most looking forward to a walk in the woods. The pristine snow crunching under my feet, the only other footprints belonging to animals who have stepped across the path I follow... Oooh! I can't wait. 
Tiny little mouse tracks!
But in the meantime, I turn to one of my favorite poems:
Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
Whose woods these are I think I know.   
His house is in the village though;   
He will not see me stopping here   
To watch his woods fill up with snow.   

My little horse must think it queer   
To stop without a farmhouse near   
Between the woods and frozen lake   
The darkest evening of the year.   

He gives his harness bells a shake   
To ask if there is some mistake.   
The only other sound’s the sweep   
Of easy wind and downy flake.   

The woods are lovely, dark and deep,   
But I have promises to keep,   
And miles to go before I sleep,   
And miles to go before I sleep.

-Robert Frost

Now off to find the snow pants, boots, and sleds!

Monday, January 18, 2016

We Have a Dream

This past weekend we took a trip to Washington D.C.  On the drive, we listened to Martin Luther King, Jr's "I Have a Dream" speech with an accompanying, beautifully illustrated book.

After we listened to the cd, we discussed the changes that have happened since the speech.  In talking about signs that read "Whites Only"  our 7 year old said, "I would be tempted to kick those signs DOWN!" - he's a mover & a shaker who will fight for justice his whole life.
After visiting the National Archives, where we saw the Magna Carta, Declaration of Independence, Constitution, and Bill of Rights, we went to the National Museum of American History and saw the Star Spangled Banner.  To end our visit, we, along with hundreds of others, stopped by the Lincoln Memorial.  Our oldest who is in fifth grade, and passionate about what is right and fair, was happy to carry on Martin Luther King Jr's message:
May it be true.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Out and About in All Kinds of Weather

In the past, I picked a purposeful word for the new year. This year, however, I kept it simple: hike/walk year-round. My ultimate goal is to help my children experience the seasons and how they affect nature.

Here is our first walk of the new year on our local rails-to-trails path.

Sometimes the walks are just myself and our new dog, Buddy.  I love how a morning walk starts my day off in a calm breath-of-fresh-air way. Buddy loves to sniff his way as we pass the farmland.
We had a small dusting of snow last night.  My youngest was
thrilled. On our walk this morning, Buddy was just as happy.

And just as happy to get warm.
So what are your goals for this year?  Do they include outdoor activities?

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Costumes - What story do you tell?

This year, as we looked forward to Halloween trick-or-treat time, I told my sons that we would not purchase costumes and that they were responsible for deciding what they would wear from what we already have.  My oldest went with the reliable Jedi, complete with a reversible robe my sister made for him a few years ago. In the past several years, this young Jedi has brought peace and justice to his growing world.

My younger son, who is seven, decided to be the King of Nature. It was so much fun to listen to him as we talked about ideas of how to be the King of Nature. a glitter wood walking stick, a pet (stuffed) fox, and the perfect crown topped off his outfit. I think in the near future we will come up with some wonderful King of Nature stories.

Thanks to the Toymaker for the jack o lantern images.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

National Park Service 100 Years Strong!

A major effort in reaching the next generation is on for the National Park Service as it begins to celebrate 100 years of public service.  I think this is a great way to start:

Thursday, October 8, 2015


A few days ago I wandered the back streets of historic Philadelphia as I made my way to the Thaddeus Kosciuszko National Memorial. As I passed Saint Joseph Church, I saw this lovely statue in he historic cemetery.

It is so calming and peaceful.  I just had to share it with those of you who are not following on Instagram. 

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Back to Work

I have been back to full-time work for several months and am tired. My commute is long and I miss my kids, but I am trying to keep my focus on the good. The boys enjoy cyber school and are making friends at the learning center. (A huge relief since I wish we were still homeschooling with Oak Meadow. ) My time with the boys is purposeful.  We are able to release our focus on finances. And my job is enjoyable.  My thankful list is in fact much longer, but I will stop there.

It hit me this morning, however, that this blog has taken a backseat as I realized that yesterday was Michaelmas and I didn't get to commemorate it with my family or on the blog. So I've decided turn How the Sun Rose into more of a photo journal of my life, my family, my surroundings, and my thoughts. So sit back and enjoy.

Here is a little taste of my day. I am in New Hall Military Museum, the location of the original War Department in the 1790s. I'm talking with people today about the Revolutionary War as they look at original artifacts including this drum used in the Continental Army
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