Friday, May 4, 2012

Spying Glass: I Spy Nature in the City

We needed a few items from nature for some crafts we have cooking, so mom decided (kind of spur of the moment) to have us head out on a nature "I Spy."  I have been obsessed with the "Where's Waldo?" books for quite some time and she thought it would be a fun way to get us out of the house, but not have to venture too far.  Fortunately, she readily found these spring "I Spy" cards from Spell Out Loud (you have to "like" her facebook page to get them, but then they are free -- clever, clever).  Mom printed them, cut them out, hole punched them and looped a bit of baker's twine through them.  We looked through them several times at home, talking about where we might find the items shown on the cards.  And then we each took our Julius the Monkey bag and headed out (Cam also snuck an unwrapped piece of cheese, some Barbie doll shoes, and her juice into her nature bag -- smart girl).

We were looking for: a nest; a bird; an insect; a mammal; a budding tree; yellow flowers; white flowers; purple flowers; something brown; something green; something dirty; and something pink.

We spied something dirty right off the bat -- I found dirt.  The different colored flowers were relatively easy to find as was something brown, something green and something pink.  More difficult was finding a nest, a mammal and a budding tree.  See our pictures below for what we eventually determined counted as finds.

It took us about an hour to find all these things just within a few blocks of our house -- we were somewhat hampered by mom's insistence that we not run and that we all stick together ("we live in a busy neighborhood," and yada yada yada).  And I insisted several times that we stop and take a "rest" on people's stoops.  We eventually crossed everything off our list and hit up Starbucks for a well deserved chocolate (Cami) and vanilla (me) milk break.

And throughout all that time we spent searching for "nature" in our 'hood, mom tried to explain that "nature" is not "people made."  I am of the philosophy that things are what I say they are and so I decided that there could be "people made nature," which meant I tried to cross things off the list quickly by pointing to a pink lip gloss, a yellow school bus, etc.  This led mom to two conclusions: (1) she still can't fight with crazy; and (2) an "Urban I Spy" might be more appropriate (and less time consuming) in our neighborhood.  So she came up with our own "Urban I Spy" (google docs link below -- mom is too tired to figure out how to use it as an incentive to get people to "like" our FB page, so if you haven't already, just go "like" it please).  It's likely most applicable to our particular 'hood of D.C., but you get the idea.  Enjoy!

Link to Google Docs for Not-So-SAHM Urban I Spy!  And be cool, man.  Feel free to use these personally, but they aren't for commercial use (you wouldn't profit off the hard work of little kids, would you?  our mom's a lawyer, you know ....)

our cards courtesy of Spell Out Loud

nature i spy? whatch you talkin' about?


this is something green, white flowers, yellow flowers and there was a bee in there, too

a lion statue!  that could be our mammal ....

pink flowers

purple flowers

stoop break

come on, Kane!

OK, another break 

she finally got me to hold her hand

so i went big and gave her a hug

a bird, mom!

i decided the animal at the top was a dolphin and that it counted as our mammal.  mom decided that even though it might not be a dolphin and it wasn't real, since i knew a dolphin was a mammal, she'd count it

this stick is totally on our list

we decided this cherry tree branch counted as a budding tree

real birds, but they were 'hood birds involved in a dispute, so we didn't want to get too close

a little ant hill -- this was our "nest"

starbucks break!

whenever we walk by this spot near our house, i insist on getting in the bushes and 
make mom take a picture

1 comment:

Darcy said...

thank you for the urban cards! i really needed something this morning to make me laugh out loud!