Summer Memory Stroll 2010

Fall is here in full force (nod to the full moon on the same day as the fall equinox)! While I anxiously await jumping into my first leaf-pile of the year, I thought I’d just give a little recap of some summer highlights.

  • Summer began as any well-respecting Wisconsinite might wish: with snow!

  • It did a number on my tomato plants, but my harvest is still plentiful. Here’s a look into my bag after a recent harvest from my community garden, and a photo I treasure of my cantaloupe babies. They are definitely adolescents now, but are still in need of the vine.

  • Early this summer I was privileged to be present when my sister was called and set-apart as a full-time missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. She will spend the next year-and-a-half living on a small northern island in the Philippians, serving the people and teaching them about how the gospel of Jesus Christ can bring added happiness and peace to their lives. Here’s a picture from the last time I saw her, as well as one she just sent home:

  • While the summer was still green and lush, I spend as many evening after work as possible roaming through the mountains:

  • Here’s a shot from one hike with my friend Kelsey- just days before she took off on a mission to Florida:

  • In June, my work flew me out to San Francisco to do some training at the nation’s oldest science museum, the Exploratorium. The PIE (Playful Inventive Exploration) training was hands-down some of the most inspiring  education I’ve ever received. More to come shortly on how we’ve been using that training to inspire more innovation and creativity from the middle-schoolers I work with. Here is a picture of me outside the museum, inside the workshop space, and beside some lovely sea lions down on pier 39:
  • I flew on an overnight flight from CA to WI to spend a week in the great outdoors with my dear family. Here we all are under uncle Bob’s tarp. The thunderstorms helped us to get extra cozy!
  • I spent Independence Day with my brothers, sister-in-law, and nieces at the Bees Stadium. Nothing like thousands of people cuddled on blankets, watching small explosions in the sky:
  • I also spent some time exploring natural hotsprings:
  • Discovered a new species of maple:
  • (kidding about the maple….well maybe. Have you ever heard of a variegated maple?)
  • Joined a group of daring souls on a search for the infamous kokanee:
  • Saw some sunsets that literally brought me to my knees:
  • Traveled through Utah wilderness with dear WI friends and family:
  • And just spent at much time as possible gleaning from the wisdom of dear Mother Earth:

follow-up on the punk-star primate’s autopsy

I’ve been on the road for the last few weeks, sharing the love of science with middle schoolers. I contributed another entry to The Leonardo’s blog, sharing some of the ingenuity I’ve seen from these kids. Click on the link or the picture below to read about how one group of 8th graders used my de-constructed monkey in the creation of a chain reaction.

Autopsy on a rock-star monkey

I contributed the most recent blog post to Read the post at:

peek-a-boo with a pigeon

I don’t go to fairs for the games or rides. I go for the animals. Not because I relish in rows of caged birds or delight in seals who dance to 90’s music on the hour, but because I think it’s in my blood. I mean, I come from generations of solid farmer stock, and somehow to mingle in a crowd of people who are so proud of their livestock feels homey. The hum of cattle, the mingled smells of funnel cakes and roasted corn and hay and digested hay, children pointing from their shoulder-top perches, the pride of the blue-ribbon bearers…you can’t help but feel like you belong there, right? This year a pigeon even played peak-a-boo with me:


I, for one, never knew that pigeons could be so diverse.

and, here’s a bonus picture of a seal dancing to 90’s music.