locations & destinations

We went geocaching for the first time!


It was a learning process, and a fun one.  We downloaded an app on my phone that allowed us to look for caches nearby and then we headed up to the Capital grounds where we used the compass and map on my phone to move toward the cache until we were in the area.  Then we had to use our eyes to find its hiding spot. We found two caches and tried but didn’t find a third.  I think I need to do more research before heading out and we need to choose carefully.  We’re hoping to do this with another family over the summer.

We played on the playground with friends before heading back here for more play, goodbyes and then soccer for Gavin and Broken Age playing for Lilah.

Broken Age is an amazing narrative computer game where you solve puzzles of various kinds and difficulties. Gavin has been playing it with his dad when Lilah does gymnastics and recently Lilah requested to play too so we’ve started another game, she and I.

Gavin had soccer games and practice.

They played Small World.

We visited the Wild West playground which is a really fun set up with local places of significance represented in a unique playground.  When they got hot and tired we had a picnic lunch in the shade and I read a few pages of Castle in the Air before they ran off to play some more.

We happened upon an article about the old Wasatch Warm Springs Bath House history, which is now abandoned and in our local park so we read about it and looked at some old photos.

The kids built various things out of K’Nex.   It’s fun to watch the complexity of their creations grow along with their building and planning skills.

We spread mulch over our vegetable garden.  We need a bit more but it’s a good start.  We haven’t tried mulch before this so it will be interesting to see how it does.  I think I spotted a pumpkin sprout and possibly a dumpling squash as well this morning.  Lilah was thrilled that there was a pink strawberry on one of the plants.  Today it was ripe enough to pick and eat! It’s such fun to watch the changes and help nurture the plants along and then enjoy the harvesting and feasting.

We puzzled.


We read more of Castle in the Air.  It’s a delight.

We met with other unschoolers at a new to us park in Ogden called Ogden High Adventure park.  It was full of ropes play, spinning things and other challenging equipment, plus there’s a river flowing right behind it.  What a fun park!  I’m going to play more on it next time too!

Lilah counted up the money she’s earned (with my help) from doing chores and then when we went to Target, she bought herself a Lego Hero Factory set.


We visited the aquarium.  It had been quite a while so that was fun.  Gavin particularly likes the river otters and Lilah enjoyed seeing the caiman alligators.  I always like the cuttlefish and octopus especially.  The penguins were all nesting and we watched them carefully picking up small stones and carrying them to their nests and arranging them while their partners lay on the top of the rock nests.

We met up in the canyon with other unschoolers for “Forest School”, which was a bunch of families meeting in a forest meadow and exploring and we scouted a creek and found bones and climbed rocks and hauled a rusty car hood over to make a bridge.

And in between all of this, reading and story making and researching and experimenting and hula hooping and painting and giggling and cuddling and cleaning and negotiating.  It’s been good.



I’m skipping blogging about some days here and there due to holiday bustle but today was a little bit quieter than it has been.

The kids played on the computer and built lego settings for their story telling.

After breakfast they helped fold clothes, pick up and vacuum to get the house ready for friends later.

Gavin pulled out his lego Hero Factory pieces and built some new “guys”.  One of them was named Huge Foot.

Lilah asked me to read The Wolves in the Walls by Neil Gaiman to her.


We took a trip to pick up a gift that we hadn’t already brought home and admired the fountains at the City Creek Center while we did.

The kids worked on some math sheets.  Gavin has forgotten many of his memorized math facts.  I’m not sure how I feel about that.  I think we’ll practice a bit here and there if he is willing.  The concepts he’s picked up, though, those are still there.  He did some reading from Where On Earth (his kids atlas) to me.  He still tends to skip words and tumble over himself because his brain reads faster than his mouth. At least that’s my guess.

Mid afternoon Lilah and I picked up her friend from school and they started playing with the Hero Factory constructs as soon as we arrived home.  As their chosen characters, they visited the center of Egypt.  They talked loudly and quietly.  They climbed the biggest tree in the world (also known as our holiday tree).


After Lilah’s friend left, it was time for dinner, a quick walk around the neighborhood and then reading some more of Julie of the Wolves, which is still starring in their storytelling play in concepts and setting.



The kids got out the pop beads and made characters out of those.  Then they asked each other, “What could we build them houses with”? They tossed a few ideas around and settled on the K’nex so they got those out and began building and story telling.

Each of them vacuumed a room of the houses.  We have a chore list up that they can choose to help with or not.  Each chore has a value in money and they are in charge of both choosing what to do and keeping track of what they’ve done.  When it comes time to get their pay, they get to add the amounts together and figure out what we owe them.  It’s a great system for us because I don’t feel the need to nag and they feel ownership of their help around the house.


Lilah and I did some Spanish practicing.

We wrote alternate rhymes to Hickory Dickory Dock and pointed out the rhyme pattern.

The kids adore Ella Fitzgerald.  We have an album called Miss Ella’s Playhouse which is a collection of Ella’s songs for kids that we listen to all the time.  So I asked the kids if they’d like to learn more about the kind of music that Ella sings.  They said yes so I asked Chris for some suggestions.  He’s studied music copiously and it’s one of his favorite subjects to explore.

So, we listened to Miss Ella’s Playhouse.  Then I briefly explained the history of Jazz.  We listened to Scott Joplin’s The Entertainer to get a taste of Ragtime.  Then we listened to Louis Armstrong sing It’s a Wonderful World, Ella and Louis sing Dream a Little Dream of Me, Miles Davis play from his Kind Of Blue album and Thelonious Monk and John Coltrane play Ruby My Dear.  We talked about syncopation, the different parts that voices and instruments take, and how improvisation is a big part of what makes Jazz special.  The kids got out our drum and did a little drumming.  I think we’ll explore more soon!

Gavin built another really nice lego spaceship.  His designs get more and more nuanced.


Lilah and I drove over to pick up her friend from school and then the three kids played with pop beads and K’nex for the rest of the afternoon.