I appreciated reading the first hand reports of the men involved.
Oh how I enjoyed this field trip. We all did. The cannons, the stories, the walking around. This was a great field trip that I would happily do again. Fort York is a great story about the people at the start of Canada as a country.
I have to admit, I took so many pictures here it's hard to choose which pictures to share with you all. :) When we arrived we were greeted by a friendly lady who gave the boys an activity/remembrance token for coming, she directed us to an information area and told us about a movie that they played.
We first took in the museum information area. There we saw the first stamps of Canada, the coins, learned about First Nation involvement, learned how both sides of the War of 1812 declared they were winners because neither side lost.
After this we took in the movie. It was played over three screens and was quite interesting, giving us lots of information. This led us to part three of the museum, a walk through history. I thought this section really well done.
This walk through history led us to the pathway that led to the restored Fort York. Some buildings were erected from stones found, others were built according to original specs. Almost all held artifacts, and each building had an introductory plaque at the entrance.
Isn't this tree magnificent?
The boys thought it would be fun to pose in the guard house.
Hmm.. let's see what else can I share with you?
We saw the stark difference between the enlisted men and the officers quarters. I found it quite amazing in fact...
Officers room and eating area.
Different buildings were dedicated to different pieces of information, from seeing how the officers and soldiers lived, to observing the placement of cannons, learning about the different weapons and uniforms, and bugle calls all had meaning as well.
One of the things that happened in the battle at Fort York was when they blew up the magazine, it killed so many of the attacking Americans, the devastation was so sudden. One of the last areas we visited walked us through the attack and blow up of the magazine. They couldn't let all that gunshot end up in enemy hands.
I appreciated reading the first hand reports of the men involved.
One of the last places we visited was the well. My son was so disappointed as the well didn't work. It was sealed off.
And check out this beautiful tree!!! Yes, the colours were changing and this tree was just so very lovely I couldn't pass it up
I hope you enjoyed this brief look at Fort York. There is so much yet I could show you but why would you have a reason to go visit it yourself? We did a self-guided tour and it was interesting and great exercise transversing the yards.
One day I had to run up to Guelph. I had two or three rabbits to sell, and the folks could meet me there, so the lad and I decided to make a day of it. Do you know that Guelph has very little in the way of museums to visit? Oh my. BUT we did make it to two museums, I talked about the McCrae House already, so today I will talk about the Guelph Civic Museum.
The Guelph Civic Museum is given over to telling the stories of Guelph. It has a variety of exhibits, from static information, to wildlife displays and more. It is a somewhat larger museum...with I think three floors. If you pay entrance to the one museum, you gain entrance on the same day to the other. It did take us a while to figure out where it was... but obviously we managed.
So if you go, this is the building and location for you. :)
One of the first things we saw upon entering the museum was this neat piece of art work. The lad and I both said "WOW" when we saw it. Isn't it neat? All the swirling motion that gets you all caught up.
One section of the building was given over to clothes designed by a person I can't remember. AH See.. this is why I take pictures... clothes for a wedding back in 1905.
Guelph is a town built on an agricultural background, much in it's current production still reflects that...housing one of Canada's vet colleges, having a research station and what not.
They had this lovely set for a garter snake that my son was quite taken with.
They had this interactive area which my son and I spent a lot of time in. Levers to pull, cranks to turn, dials to spin and they all did something. They didn't all work exactly the way they were meant to due to abuse by other visitors, but it was fun none-the-less.
Guelph Civic Museum. Filled with agricultural tidbits and lots of information about the founders and First Nation relations and interactive elements.
Go on, have fun, learn some local history.
Taking some time to get caught up on some field trips we've done this year and thought you might like to hear about. We visited Joseph Schneider Haus I think back in August this year. Located in Kitchener, right off Victoria Park, the day was hot, we stopped for a run in the sprinkler pad and when cooled off walked up the museum, and cooled off again on the way back.
It's good to go out with a boy child, just mom and lad exploring. This day took us to the Joseph Schneider Haus in Kitchener, Ontario.
As we walked up along the tree lined road my son exclaimed.."Oh.. Is that where we are going mom? The place with the garden?" When I replied yes, he ran ahead and found his way into the garden. He discovered currant bushes! BUT I pulled him away and said..."let's explore inside first and get cooled off again, then we'll come out later to the garden and get hot before walking back to cool off again". :) He agreed that it was a good idea.
I LOVE when I got museums with my lad and we are the ONLY people there other than staff. I find the staff are more easy going and you learn so much since they don't have to divide their attention. Today was no exception to the rule.
This young man, I regret I can no longer remember his name, was a delightful guide and interacted so nicely with my lad. He asked my son good questions and actually WAITED for a response before continuing his history lesson for us. He was doing a summer internship at the Haus.
Part of the house was dedicated to the Mennonite people and how they can raise buildings quickly. We were able to see a frame model of the haus, and also watch a time lapse movie of a barn raising. It is startling how quickly a barn can go up.
They had a few quilts and pictures up in the area as well.
Going through the rest of the house, we were able to talk with the kitchen staff (dressed in period costume). They were very friendly as allowed us to take a few of their currants, telling the lad he was more than welcome to eat some fresh from the bush out in the garden later.
Then our young guide pointed out some interesting aspects to the kitchen, what they restored, what they guessed at and showed us the inner workings of their clock and how it keeps perfect time...just five minutes off the hour.
More scenes from the house.
As interesting as this small museum was for us, my son was delighted when we finally made it outside to the garden. Our guide came along, helping us understand how the garden was designed. He was better informed than many museum staff as he actually knew the names AND uses of the various plants in the garden. As we talked, the lad planted himself near the currant bushes and had a delicious snack.
I found the gardens well maintained despite the heat wave we've been going through (who wants to work in the garden when it's hot out eh?).
Anyways, I've given you a bit of a walk through of the Joseph Schneider Haus, next time you are in Kitchener, stop by and learn some local history eh?
September to December
Wednesday to Saturday: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Sunday: 1 to 5 p.m.
Have an international student? Want to see him smile? Take him to a Butterfly conservatory and stand back and watch.
Then watch an 11 year introduce that student to a walking stick...and be happy. It's a rather cool thing to let a love of bugs cross a language barrier.
We had a great time wandering around and noticing the different butterflies and finches they had flying around. There was this one VERY determined finch that I watched for quite some time trying to get a picture of him, but just couldn't manage. He'd fly down, rustle in the bushes, come out pulling on a vine/twig/or something like that and try to fly up to his nest and everytime was pulled short as it just wouldn't pull free. He did this over and over again. Very determined little beastie.
My son asked about why they have all the finches and learned that they are given to them. They eat seeds and eggs and help keep the place tidy. They add a touch of colour and flash and they are fun to watch.
Isn't this Emerald Butterfly gorgeous? The brillancy of the colours is an indicator it hatched on the day. We saw three of them? It's hard to know for sure since they are very good at flying around. We did have a chance to see a variety of butterflies.
I must not forget to talk about the bugs and butterflies with the boys. :)
The waterfall was lovely even though this picture is rather meh. The staff were wandering about and the lad asked if he could see the stick bug pulling our student along with him.
They transferred Ms. Stick Bug from one hand to the next, I even held it for a bit. Very gentle but with slightly sticky feet.
Want to know what my lad is watching so intently?
This pair of quail. About six of them wander around, usually in groups of two. They are fairly tame, but aren't keen on being caught. The conservatory hosts butterflies, finches, two sizes of quail, turtles and koi. Just fun to set and watch them and hope that one will land on you. :)
The Cambridge Butterfly Conservatory is a great place to visit. Located nearish the airport outside of Cambridge, Ontario. I hope you have enjoyed this brief look .... you really must go and see it for yourselves though, its a great place to spend a good hour and a bit.
From the Open Doors Site: Art with Panache presents the work of London and southwestern Ontario artists. Come and see – and discuss – artwork and jewelry created by local artists. A jewelry artist will be available to demonstrate how to make extraordinary pieces with polymer clay. Also, watch artists in action as they paint a complete canvas in only 40 minutes!
This was a place I wanted to go, I like seeing art being produced, and I thought it would be interesting to talk with the artists. It was a good opportunity to practice speaking English with our student as we mulled over which piece of art we liked best.
This one is called a money drop tree. The artist makes quite a few of these and they all turn out differently as she encourages passersby to help with adding the leaves to it. The leaves are all done in silver and copper tones (like money). She often gives them away as fundraisers for charity. Neat concept I thought.
We were not actually able to take a lot of pictures, for some reasons artists frown upon such activity...I think they actually want people to buy their work instead of take pictures of it. :)
This piece made me think of the work by the group of Seven for some reason. I tried to explain that to my student but am really not sure how much he understood.
It wasn't his most favourite piece (he really liked the money tree and another painting I was discouraged from taking a picture of).
I thought it rather neat myself...something about the curving pattern worked for me.
Everyone seemed to like this painting...the realism, the lily pads.. made my sweetheart want to go fishing. Me of wanting to read a book in silence. The lad to go looking for frogs and my student "walk by water".
There were a few pieces like this one scattered about, my son thought them interesting, but wondered if they could be made smaller. They kinda like like wood but were made out of some type of polymer that I can't recall the name of.
We did the artist who could paint a canvas quickly. He did it with a background of quick blue paint strokes and then added colour over top. It was rather fascinating to watch him...as the colour kinda blended together but not really, we saw a boat house take shape right in front of our eyes. I was too interested and forgot to take pictures.
I spent a lot of time talking with a lady who makes jewelry, and plan to email her about setting up a class for our homeschool group to learn how to work with the material she uses. It's like a very versatile clay and needs hardening in the oven, but it's not really a clay it's a plastic based compound. Interesting how she is able to work with it, the lad saw the possibilities of it very quickly.
You can find out more about Art with Panache on Facebook.
Another stop we made while doing Open Doors London was the 427 Wing and Spirit of Flight Aviation Museum. This was a quieter, look and see type of museum, but it was interesting none-the-less.
This museum used to be part of an active air training centre, however is now used to educate people about the role of the aircraft through times of war.
About half of the education centre was given over to information about aircraft, the other half to the people involved with the aircraft.
The boys spent a great deal of time at this board, trying to see if they could figure out which airplane belonged to each cleverly written clue. They got 5 of 8 correct. :)
Up above and around the room, numerous model aircraft were seen.
The aircraft had various insignia on them, it was interesting to see the colour patterns and types of aircraft that Canada has had up in the air. It would have been neat to have been able to take pictures of all the airplanes and then match them up with photos of actual aircraft.
Part of the museum was dedicated to the people of the air force. One such young man is specially noted. A student, Kenneth Gerald Spooner, who died saving the lives of others. My son was much impressed by this young man's heroism.
The dining area of the museum also housed a hockey memorial.
Andy Gilpin was part of the 1948 Canadian Hockey team, that was not expected to do well in the olympics. They ended up winning gold. I talked with one gentleman there who told me so much about the team, and how he was a good friend of Mr. Gilpin. There was numerous hockey memorabilia in this area, as well as the skates from Barbara Ann Scott, who was a great figure skater who also won at the Olympics.
The individual I spoke to, mentioned how she was lifted on the shoulders of the hockey team and was Canada's skating darling.
It's a small museum, and really doesn't take a whole lot to go through. but it's a good piece of history to walk through, part of the history of our land.
You know what I learned on Saturday?
London.. my local city... was a haven for slaves escaping from well.. Slavery! Who would have known? I probably shouldn't have been surprised to learn this but I was.
We were able, through OPEN DOORS London, to visit this historic church.
The building we visited was not the original slave chapel as it's no longer safe to let people into, but was a building used later one by folks who stayed in the area after the civil war in the States.
Beth Emmanuel. They are working at preserving the old chapel.
We first went into the basement of the church which was filled with information about the slaves coming to Canada. The laws at the time allowed slave catchers to follow them up and bring them back, but most stayed well in hiding. This chapel ministered to them.
It also had a section where they talked about the restoration efforts at the original chapel. They had this dear elderly woman standing there chatting with people as they came up to see. She was so delighted in showing how they were peeling off the layers of wall paper. It was neat to see her excitement. They also had the floor plan laid out so that we could see what the buildings design was.
After pursuing the basement information we were encouraged to go upstairs to the meeting area. This chapel is still active. I talked with the parson for a bit and learned that the members are mostly senior, but they have an active children's ministry with between 30-60 children showing up every Sunday. I was impressed. It is by no means a huge building, and that active community involvement.. made me want to start attending because that would just be fun! :)
It was an open area, they don't have the pastor sit or stand above anyone else as they believe all are created equal in the sight of God and that means within the church as well. They had these lovely stained glass windows.
Aren't they nice?
Let's see, what else can I add about this unexpected piece of history.
Pieces of art work were scattered about upstairs as well.
I thought these pieces interesting, what do you think?
Life has been busy for the past while... I sometimes feel like I am on a roller coaster... but it's okay.. I have moments to breathe.. I have to, my achy feet won't let me continue to do too much all the time. Anyways, thought I'd share some of it.
Putting new walls on my rabbitry. I needed to make a change that would keep my bunnies cooler this hot summer, my solution was to build walls that air could pass through freely. They are MUCH happier now.
We have squeezed in field trips, day camps, working at the food bank, actual hands on book work and my son is delighted that I mostly have him following our summer schedule of Veritas Press bible and history, math and 1/2 hour reading daily.
Reading books and writing reviews... it all takes time you know. Formatting, creating pictures, thinking of how to write them, and actually writing them.
Doing Art With a Boy child, doing an official program which takes WAY longer than our 15 minutes of art a day that we've been doing...
Taking pictures of flowers and posting them to facebook, such a fun way to connect with friends and family.
Rhubarb season is in full swing so I've been making Rhubarb pudding, cake, crisp, sauce and more.
I also been coping with a hubby not home, hot weather, rescuing bunnies from heat stress, writing blog posts, and..... Preparing for a yard sale. We'll be moving at some point (though we don't know when quite yet) so I'm clearing book shelves and selling what we don't need (including bunnies) and just tidying things up.
I love keeping stuff and this house is amply filled with the evidence of that. So it's very hard... actually REALLY REALLY hard to weed through stuff and see what doesn't need to stay here from old clothes to books to just stuff...But hopefully I can get rid of stuff that I really don't need and just get on with the rest of life eh? In the end I don't want to move stuff that we really don't need. :)
With my Sweetheart away this week, and needing to go to Guelph the other day to sell some rabbits, my son and I thought we would make a day of it and see some of the Guelph sites. We chose McCrae House and the river that ran nearby it.
www.greatwar.co.uk/poems/john-mccrae-in-flanders-fields-inspiration.htmJohn McCrae was a Guelph Resident and he was responsible for writing a poem that many people are very familiar with. He was a young artillery officer and military doctor and one of the young men under his command died in the Battle of Ypres.
Depending on who you believe, this young man's death was the inspiration for the poem, or it could have been the poppies growing, or it could have just been boredom speaking. :) Either way, his poem lives on.
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.
The house was beautiful and the grounds were so well kept. It was too bad it was so hot out, it would have been lovely to sit out there for a while and watch my lad look for spiders among the hedges.
Inside the museum we came upon this lovely map. It was SO pretty.. I'm not sure that's the right word for it. But it caught our eyes and we stood in front of it for quite a while looking it over really well.
"Mom, why does it have all these place names?"
"Why doesn't it look like our map at home?"
"Is it a real map or a fake one?".. he then started checking it over, my attention-to-detail lad, and noticed that the creases in the map weren't real creases and realized it was a replica.
John McCrae was part of the army, so we learned what the mess kit looked like.
We discovered and talked about how a man can have a close relationship with his horse and dog..."but mom, he really needed to have a cat!"
It was not a big museum and once we got past the map, we saw everything they had rather quickly. There were other things to see, but these were the highlights for us. If you ever have a chance to visit Guelph, take a peek inside! On a nice day, bring a picnic lunch and enjoy the serene grounds. $5 per person to get in, open Tues-Sun.
When we were done, we headed across the street to sit in the shade of some trees by the river. The lad chased a young robin, and was stunned by the sight of a tree growing through a cement block. He noted how it bent out the concrete. It seemed a strong vigorous tree. The goslings we saw were farther along then ours at home.
It was very restful sitting here, watching the water, listening to the sounds of people in the distance, "mom, would be even better if there was a big row of trees over there, then we wouldn't see the buildings, it would be even nicer then". And it would have been, but it was still nice.
We then headed off to the Civic Museum, which I will post about another time. :)
This week we had a chance to go to the Stones and Bones Museum in Sarnia.
Wow... for a little place they sure pack in a whole whack of things.
The tour started with the owner of museum talking with the children about a variety of bugs they had up on the wall. He mentioned how his wife wore this necklace made from bugs for a TV interview.
One of the things that I enjoyed about visiting this museum, beyond the sheer wealth of items to look at, the proprietor stayed with us in the museum, and would stop and ask the children and parents if they wanted to know more about anything. He would then expound upon any topic at hand.
Things my son liked:
There were many items there that caught my eye, I think I took pics of almost everything. Some of my personal highlights though.
Taxidermy, animal action portrayed.
My lad was amazed at the sheer size of a polar bear. The pic didn't come out all the best. You would have smiled to hear the exclamations of the boys in front of us.
It was a good trip and I would love to go again. :) I want to see what other small creatures I would spy hiding in the corners...Like this wee weasel hiding away with his meal.. we almost missed him and I wonder what else we may have missed.
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if you were me
Family Hope Center
Bible Study Guide for all ages
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Homeschool in the woods
Wet, Dry, Try App
Essentials in Writing
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A journey through learning
2014 TOS Reviews
Philippians in 28 weeks.
The Brinkman Adventures.
Logic of English.
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Wizzy Gizmo: In his image
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Tokens of Promise
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30 Days of Bible Study...
Topaz and the Evil Wizard
Alone yet not alone
Lead me Home
I am Second
Can't wait Willow
This is Our Time
What I wish I knew at 18
Raising boys by design.
The Ruby Ring.
Knowing God By name.
The Jesus Bible, NIV.
One Realm Beyond.