Tuesday, December 15, 2009

The end of a great semester!

Since we are attached to the university, our world takes place in semesters and this is the last week of the fall 2009 semester!

We capped off the last few months with our annual Holiday Nature Crafts program. This year's crafting event was a huge success; we had over 40 kids show up to make beautiful masterpieces. Some of the crafts included tree cookie ornaments, pinecone elf figurines, and coffee ground fossils. My personal favorite was artwork using sun print paper - something I remember doing as a child. In addition to crafting we snacked, colored, and played in the snow.

Things will be super slow around here through the rest of December and the beginning of January. Our staff will be enjoying their winter breaks! I'll be off to Virginia, but will be back in the New Year to fill you in on all things nature!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Are we sure it is not Winter yet?

Winter does not officially start for another couple of weeks, but Father Frost has arrived early! Man, is it cold out there! I was out at the Nature Center yesterday afternoon and all of the geese and ducks had their heads wrapped under their wings! Brrrrrr.

This past weekend, 10 volunteers braved the cold to help us out on Service Saturday. We are currently remodeling the inside of the nature center and these kind folks helped us repaint. Thanks so much! We appreciate your dedication!

We'll be staying warm this weekend during Holiday Nature Crafts. We still have some room left in this program, so don't forget to RSVP. We'll be crafting, playing games, and snacking out at the Colorado Welcome Center. Give us a call (491-1661) for more information!

In nature news, staff member, Ally, spotted two bald eagles and a golden eagle on our property last week. The Great-Horned Owl has also been making regular appearances right by the nature center. Our furry friends are harder to spot these days, but plenty of rabbits can be spotted roaming the fields in the early morning. If you are looking for something to do outside, I highly suggest bundling up and taking a walk after the sun has set (you don't have to go far, your neighborhood will do) ; you'll be amazed at what you find. After the first snow of the season a friend and I walked through campus around midnight and spotted a couple of foxes and tons of tiny mice jumping in the snow. It was really amazing!

That's it for this week. I'll be back next week with tales of nature crafts!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Our final GSE of the year and Holiday Nature Crafts!

First, I hope all of you had wonderful Thanksgivings! Whether you ate a robust feast fit for a queen or some lunchables from 711 (as one of my students did), I hope your days were filled with laughter!

As mentioned in my previous post, my family and I took a road trip to San Francisco. It was beautiful and on one hike we saw sea lions, porpoises, and a red-tailed hawk. Not to shabby for a big city walk-about.

On Monday we held our final Great School Escape of the year. Participants were full of energy, but focused enough to learn about the winter season. Students from my Environmental Education course wrote the lesson plans and objectives included everything from being able to define the term "diapause" to being able to identify types of avalanches. The weather held out for us and we had a good day!

Don't forget about our annual Holiday Nature Craft program coming up on Saturday, December 12. You can drop your kids off or come and create nature-related masterpieces with your children. Along with craft projects, we'll provide snacks, drinks, and games. This program takes place from 10am-2pm - drop by whenever you would like and stay as long as you would like. We'll be crafting in our classroom out at the Colorado Welcome Center (yup, its that funny looking building at the intersection of I-25 and East Prospect). Hope to see you there.

Have a great week and enjoy this lovely snow!