Monday, June 29, 2015

2nd Annual Nature Scavenger hunt for Families

It's time!!! The second annual nature scavenger hunt for families has begun!

If you haven't signed up yet you can do so by joining the Nature Scavenger Hunt for Families Facebook Group. Anyone can join during the first week. Next Sunday (when I send out the second week's tasks for the hunt) will be the end of new members joining and everyone who has not participated this first week will be deleted. Over this past year there have been many, many, new participants and I want to make sure only those who want to participate are here.

This nature scavenger hunt is meant to get you and your family OUT in nature this summer so natural photos are a must and they must be taken the same week as the tasks are posted.

You are welcome to participate just for fun or you can join in for the competitive points side of the hunt but I am hoping your main reason for joining is to bond together as a family while exploring and learning about the wonderful natural world all around us. Each week will focus on a theme in nature. To make it a bit different then last year most are new themes, but there are a couple theme weeks which are the same as they were loved by all and I think everyone will enjoy those weeks again.

Since this week marks the first week of summer vacation here in Canada we are starting out with one of my personal favourites; the Forest because what better way to start the summer is there then a few walks through the forest. Depending on where you live it could be a mixed forest with many types of trees, or perhaps you live near the giant Sequoia forest or maybe you have just a wooded lot near your house. No forest near by??? Perhaps its a great excuse for a day trip! Or better yet; travel to a different forest everyday!

If time doesn't permit you to travel to a participate everyday you are welcome to take all your photos on one day... however again I recommend you spending a couple days at least exploring the forests nearby. Take a tree field guide with you for extra learning fun (and maybe earn some bonus points).

Remember you can do each task on individual days or all at once (depending on how much time in nature your family can commit to) just as long as the photos are uploaded to the Nature Scavenger Hunt for Families Facebook Group by the following Sunday each week. So for example all the photos from week one must be uploaded by Sunday July 4th.

(Normally this list will come out on Sunday nights. I'm off to a wonderful start with being late this first week. Please except my apologies but we got stranded in a small plane in another town last night when bad weather hit.)

1) June 29th: A family portrait of everyone who is participating in this hunt 25 points (10 bonus points if it's a photo of your family climbing a tree, 5 more bonus points if you can correctly name the type of tree it is)
2) June 30th: A photo looking up at the Canopy of the trees 5 points
3) July 1st: (Canada Day Holiday) Maple tree 5 points (10 bonus points if you CREATE something with no more then two maple leaves) Please be very careful when picking leaves from the tree as to not break any branches.
4) July 2nd: Rays of light shining through the trees to the forest floor 10 points
5) July 3rd: Forest Floor picture 5 points. Pick a spot and sit on the forest floor. Look closely. How many different creatures can you identify from your picture. 5 bonus points per item correctly identified. Photo will need to be clear enough for me to also identify them.
6) July 4th: (Independence Day Holiday USA) Sunrise or sunset 5 points

Week 1 BONUS'S for extra points:
Show us how you celebrated either Canada Day or Independence Day outside in Nature 25 points

Don't worry if you miss a day's points or don't achieve all the bonus points as there are many, many more tasks in the coming weeks to make up points.

I want to also share with you now some extra activities to gain points throughout the summer. These extra bonus's are meant to get you thinking and participating in outdoor activities throughout your summer.

The following may be uploaded at any time during the 9 week period:
EXTRA bonus 1: Create a clay face on a tree using all natural items 50 points
EXTRA bonus 2: Go star gazing. Can you see any constellations? Which one? ones? Take a photo of it or create art to resemble the constellation you saw. 25 points
EXTRA bonus 3: Find a great stick and decorate it to be a walking stick to use while you are exploring 50 points
EXTRA bonus 4: Go camping... Take a family photo outside your tent or camper 25 points
EXTRA bonus 5: Explore a hiking trail. Take a journal with you. Stop and draw some of the things you saw on your walk 5 points per item you draw
EXTRA bonus 6: Visit an ocean or visit a desert...find something you think is interesting, take a picture of it and share a fact about what you found. Tell us where you are too please!  25 points
EXTRA bonus 7: Create a fairy house for our fairy friends 50 points. (note extra bonus points may be awarded here, or at any point for creativity)

Does this all sound confusing? Trust me it sounds a bit confusing to me too but I will tally up everyone's point totals weekly so you know where you stand in the ratings. This is only our second year so if I have been unclear or you have any questions at all please feel free send me a message through the facebook group and I will try to answer your questions more clearly.

IMPORTANT!!!! Remember to add the hashtag #2015naturehunt to the photo description of EACH picture as you upload it to the Nature Scavenger Hunt Facebook group so I can easily keep track of each submission and award your points accordingly. Please also describe your photo. For example your photo entry for June 30th should have a description like this in the comments when you upload it:

June 30th- Tree canopy #2015naturehunt 

Feel free to start a family albumn on the facebook group page. make sure to title it 2015 and your family name please.

Ready? Set? GO!!! Have fun exploring, discovering and learning about our wonderful world together as a family. I can't wait to see all your photos...Oh and random bonus points might be awarded for creativity. Remember...if you miss points one week there will be ample weeks available to catch up in the points department. Some tasks will be easier then others and points will be awarded accordingly. Now get out there and start exploring, learning and having fun snapping pictures and making memories.

Friday, May 22, 2015

it's been awhile...

I'm so far behind it isn't even funny. My camera messed up while we were on vacation in September and I got so upset, I dropped off of the blog, instagram and facebook worlds. It's time to get back to business though and gradually get caught up on past posts of our adventures as I do want them documented.

I'll start with our first trip of the year to Copeland Forest this week...mainly pictures but we had a great time as always.

Aayla enjoying a little break in the Copeland forest
The girls heading down one of the many trails in Copeland Forest

There were many dragonflies buzzing around despite the breeze.

The Marsh Marigolds were in full bloom.

Sierra having a little rest on the tracks
One of me taken by Aayla...isn't wind blown hiking hair so pretty lol

 Last year we found salamander eggs all around the vernal pools and rescued them and put them back in the water so they didn't dry out and die. Again this year we did the same. However this year we didn't find any salamanders (HERE's a link to our post where we found the newts last year and HERE is where we played with frogs and helped the salamander eggs)
Salamander eggs

Close up of the salamander eggs

Aayla rescuing some more salamander eggs

Sierra trying to catch a frog

Polliwogs galore

There is something so beautiful about ferns...

Trillium's and ferns

I wonder if he's a prince?
 Aayla found this little patch of violets and thought they were so beautiful.
Aayla and her violet patch

 Finally she catches a frog. We observe him for awhile and let him go.
Sierra and her frog prince

Crazy looking spider and her egg sac

We even found a little wood frog. A great first visit of the year to Copeland Forest. We will be back again for sure.
Aayla examines a wood frog

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

1st Annual Nature Scavenger Hunt for Families comes to a close

It's hard to believe that we are at the end of 9 weeks for our 1st Annual Nature Scavenger Hunt for Families. The 8th and 9th week was a combo week to find natural items for all the letters in the alphabet. Here are my 26 letters...I had to be a bit creative on a couple of the letters :)

The only two actual letter shapes we found were both made of wood. One was an A and the other a Y. Apparently after seeing some of the participants letters they found in nature I need to think a little more creatively as they did an amazing job at finding letters in nature!
We had a lot of fun with these ABC pictures and all of the week's challenges. The summer has flown by so fast and I can barely believe we are at the end of our 9 weeks. 

I thank everyone who participated in this scavenger hunt for their understanding as we worked out the kinks of this first annual event and I hope to see some of you back again next year! If you would like to join next year feel free to sign up HERE and next Spring you'll receive a notice about when the challenge begins. Please make sure to sign up for notifications. Until then, may you all enjoy your time exploring the wonderful world around us.

Feel free to follow along here on the blog too or my blog's facebook page HERE for more natural and creative fun throughout the year. During the summer we tend to be out and about exploring a lot and then focus on more crafts etc during the winter months. i look forward to having you follow along.