Thursday, April 8, 2010

April 1st Nature Hike

April began with gorgeous sunny skies. After the shifting weather in March, I'm so looking forward to steady days of clear skies and milder temperatures. We are really blessed to be near some beautiful natural sites, considering we are only a fifteen minute drive from downtown Chicago.

Few things (with the exception of anything Batman for Jared) excite the kids as much as feeding animals. They can go through throwing practically an entire loaf to the ducks and geese in less than ten minutes.

We took a little walk through the woods. The kids are getting much better about not running off from me, and it is much easier to go out places with them by myself, but sometimes when they start arguing with each other, AGGHHH. Well, almost everyone who's reading this knows what I mean.

Alexa loves to read the signs along the side of the path. The problem started when both kids tried to be the first at the sign and started pushing each other out of the way.


Then Jared found a "gun" on the side of the road (he has a talent for turning most things into guns), and started to pretend shoot Alexa with it. Sigh. 

But then we found a hole in the grass, and I started a game of guessing which animal might live down there, and that changed the tone of our walk.

We stopped on the bridge for awhile, looking for fish and tossing sticks and rocks into the stream.

We ended our afternoon at the nature center. They love the giant treehouse filled with stuffed animals, and soon a few boys showed up, and they had a blast throwing the animals from the top of the treehouse.

The center has a wonderful skeleton of a wooly mammoth.

We also built a house with the blocks for the stuffed animals, and the kids played with the puddy, which is used to make animal tracks.

Somehow the kids decided they were frogs, and so they hopped from the nature center all the way to the car in the parking lot. We decided it would be nice to roast marshmellows, something we haven't done since last year, so we stopped by the store to pick some up on the way home.

Both kids were so proud to roast their own marshmellows this year. With it staying lighter outside now, it's so much nicer to play out in the yard next to the fire pit than to stay cooped up inside the house after dinner.


Nicki said...

Which nature center did you go to? We are always in search of new nature centers to explore!

Chris said...

This one was in the Fullersburg Woods where the Old Graue Mill is. I think the town is Oak Brook. We also really love Lakeview Nature Center in OakBrook Terrace. They have paddle boats in the summer and you can also go fishing. Their Sharks in the Suburbs exhibt (which I think is over now) was wonderful. We are also going to check out some new centers this summer. I'm just so happy it's spring now!