Mushroom or Spider?

Courtland, MN, on September 22, 2018. (Click for a higher res version… if you dare!)

At first we weren’t sure if this was a crazy looking spider or a weird mushroom with a spider under it. Turns out, it is definitely the former. We think it is a marbled orb weaver, though we’ve never seen one quite like this before. Apparently some people call them pumpkin spiders or even halloween spiders. Coloring can vary widely.


Daily Pilgrimage

This is our daily pilgrimage after the big kids get picked up by their bus: to watch the trucks and construction across Snelling. We often get waves from construction workers, truck drivers, bus drivers, and passers-by. And most days, I love doing it with him. He gets SO much enjoyment out of such a simple thing, it’s hard to say no. ❤️


We found a dead monarch butterfly on our walk today, which lead to breaking out the microscope to look at the scales on the wings, which lead to Maggie and Griffin breaking out the science goggles and doing science projects. I just found these observations sitting on the front steps: “Science Projects!!! When we put the vinegar with the baking soda in a glass jar and put the lid on, the jar leaked because of the pressure.” 😍 #kidsarenaturalscientists

Lab notebook.