Tuesday, June 28, 2011

It's a 4 ring circus!

Every June friends and family say to me, "Am I in the dog house?"  "Did we break up?"and the like. 

June is a time of year where all of my weaknesses come crashing together into one big MESS.  All of that time I spent procrastinating and being unorganized comes back to haunt me in every space in my life.  My classroom is a disaster, the school kids' behavior is a disaster, my own kids' behavior is a disaster, and my own house is a disaster.  What with so many disasters in one person's life something has to give...yep it's sanity.  During June I barely speak to anyone that doesn't have an immediate and easily resolved need.  I have learned that I can handle chaos and disarray in up to 3 rings of my circus, but when you add that fourth ring into the mix I've met my match.

So sorry to anyone who had an unmet need this June.  Next year be sure to get your order in during May! 

Hooray for July!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Peach Leaf Curl

Last fall we started filling our yard with fruit!  We bought nearly 20 blueberry bushes and two peach trees.  A few weeks ago I went down to have a chat with the peach trees about healthy development and the role of all things living in my yard (You must be hearty to survive around here, but we will surely appreciate you if you can stay alive...).  As I was poking around I noticed that some of the leaves looked like they were melting.  Hmm.

After a bit of investigation I am sad to announce that both of these young peach trees have Leaf Curl.


I called our local garden center, where we bought them, and they told me to buy an organic fungicide spray for now.  Treat the tree every week or so after removing the worst of the effected leaves and disposing of them in the trash because this fungus can hang around and continue to infect the trees and near by (like my poor neighbor's nectarine and plum) trees.  I've pulled off all of the cute and fuzzy little orbs that thought they'd be peaches one day so that the tree can put all of it's efforts into fighting fungus.  In the fall, they will need to be treated with another fungicide that can be sprayed on as well.

They must be strong and hearty, huh? 

Let's hope so.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Seacoast Science Center

The Seacoast Science Center in Rye NH

If you've never been there, you must go!

My class goes each day for one week every spring.  We are immersed in local science topics!  It is a teacher's dream!
  • Did you know birds don't have a bladder so the pee and poop at the same time?
  • How about how to assemble the bones of a locally found seal?
  • I can tell the difference between a dog whelk and a periwinkle.  Ever seen a tiny hole bored into a shell?  Probably the work of a dog whelk!
  • Asian Shore Crabs are an aggressive and invasive species.
  • Poison ivy not only grows it's itchy three leaves close to the ground, it can grow into vines that can choke a tree!
  • Bittersweet, another invasive plant.
  • Coniferous forests vs Deciduous forests
  • Quaker's Rouge is a fuzzy plant in the Lamb's ear family used by Native Americans to line moccasins and Quaker women, not allowed to wear makeup,  rubbed it on cheeks causing a reaction on their skin, thus nature's blush!
This list could go on and on...the SSC is a treasure on our local shores.  Please visit them for a hike, some of their exhibits, or just a day digging around the tidepools!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

How hard is it?

I've learned that it takes a serious amount of commitment and dedication to keep up a blog...especially one that people are interested in reading!  I love to read others' blogs about food, how they live their lives closer to nature and how they are trying to be more self sustainable.  I am inspired by them!

Today I'm also reflecting on emotional exhaustion.  Students at the end of a school year have so much to deal with...
  • the excitement of the upcoming summer
  • the stress of the upcoming summer (will I have friends?  will I have shelter? will I be bored?  will I have enough Xbox games to play?)
  • the crazy interruptions in daily schedules at the end of the year
  • multiple assessments
  • finishing up projects, with time constraints,
  • teacher's excitement of the upcoming summer
  • teacher's stress of the upcoming summer
  • seeing the classroom and school being taken apart piece by piece and stuffed into a box or a walmart bag
  • thinking about missing friends
  • stressing about the transition to next year's grade
  • did I return all my library books?
  • did I pass my math test?
  • what will my report card look like?
  • who will sign my year book?
  • will I get invited to that end of year pool party?
  •  winning Fun Day
  • owing the cafeteria money
Holy Crow, no wonder we are exhausted.  Tomorrow I will make extra efforts to see a bigger picture for my kids, big ones and small ones!