Monday, June 30, 2014

Touring a Goat Farm - Take 2

A few years ago we had the privilege to tour a local goat farm, Turkeyfoot Creek Creamery, that makes the BEST cheeses.  We have been regular customers ever since.  The girls love to go and play with the goats every couple weeks.

Well a couple weeks ago we had the opportunity to tour with our 4H Club.

Dell, one of the owners is such a nice guy!  He gives a great explanation.

This is the sterile room.  This large vat is where he heats the milk (pasteurizes it) and then adds the enzymes at just the right time to start creating the cheese.

This is a few batches of cheese.  The bags hanging will be cheve.  Super yummy soft cheese, like sour cream or a soft cream cheese.  We love it in mac & cheese and on toast.  The small containers are the start of gouda.
This is a photo of the "cheese cave".  They specialize in Gouda, which needs to age.  They line the shelves with these forms.  Every two days they flip them and coat with a wax paint.  This process goes between 9 to 18 months.  This is the yummiest cheese!!!  It's addicting.
 The goats though are always the star attractions for the girls.
Here they are cleaning hooves before taking them into the milking stalls.
This is the first time they actually saw the goats being milked.  Very interesting and loud process.
They had fun as always...samples galore.

 Turkeyfoot Creek Creamery ships also.  I highly recommend their products.  They are a great family and their product is top quality.  Their prices are also very reasonable.  I have had to resort to buying goat cheese at Whole Foods on recent trips (when I run out of what I pack from Turkeyfoot Creek) and it's expensive.  Most of the time double the price.  If you want great, quality product, check them out!!!

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Visiting the Duke Lemur Center - Durham, NC

Who doesn't love lemurs?  They are so cute and Fuzzy!!!  Those big eyes, and their dancing.

Turns out their "dancing" is because they have different hips joints than we do.  We watched the newest movie about the lemurs of Madagascar.  (I highly recommend this documentary about lemurs and the conservation efforts.)

Then we took advantage of our location that week, and visited the Duke Lemur Center in Durham, NC.

They are the largest home to lemurs outside of Madagascar.  In fact, they also have a location in Madagascar to help the locals in their conservation efforts.

Pictures were kind of hard, but this was an experience.  This guy right here is the son of the lemur from Zooboomafu.  Wonder where he is....yep, you guessed it.  He is now happily retired and living at the Duke Lemur Center.

We were even able to see an aye-aye, a gray mouse lemur, and a fat-tailed dwarf lemur.  They have a special nocturnal area set up, so we can see the lemurs behavior in what they consider night.  

We were able to see about 15 different species of lemurs that morning.

There is a cost to this activity.  But we felt it was worth it, it would've been cooler if we could've held a lemur.  But they don't allow that.  Apparently lemurs are not as friendly as you think they are.  They can hurt without meaning too.

There are some neat lemur facts at the Lemur World website.

Keep watching for our upcoming never know where we are going to end up :)

Friday, June 27, 2014

Our Week - Week 4

We had an exhausting week this week.  Homeschooling on the road is a challenge with special needs kiddos.  We have a certain amount of work we need to be completing, all while visiting the sites and taking in the new area.  Homeschooling while visiting New York City for 3 weeks has taken the exhaustion to a whole new level.  It takes about 1 1/2 to go a mere 6 miles in the traffic.  So commuting between places can take us 2-3 hours to go somewhere and come back to the hotel.  The sad part, we can see the areas we have been visiting for a few days from our hotel!  We are that close!

But we chugged through our work this week.  In Science we learned about plate tectonics and reviewed the layers of our planet.  I got the idea from here.

Lydia though took the cookies to a whole different level by attempting to build the models with Legos they got from the Lego store yesterday.  I thought she did fairly good!

Caty got some random LEGOs at the store in Rockefeller Center.  She built these today.

 A book I picked up for Lydia at American Girl...what better way to do Geography!
Our hotel room has a jacuzzi tub.  Caty loves it.
 We visited the Intrepid Aircraft Carrier.  One of the volunteers got our picture.
 This was Caty after walking the
 Caty is working on number recognition to 100.  She is putting them in order here.  (Yeah I know they are not in order
 Our trip to Rockefeller Center.  See the Jeff Koons sculpture in the background.  We turned that into an art project this week.
 The other books I got for Lydia.  They were on sale for $4.00.
 More LEGO fun.  She has never shown this much interest in Legos....shocks me.  But we'll take it.
Joey spent his own money to purchase a new set of Legos yesterday.
 Caty working on her Reading Eggs.  And Building words from word families.
 She got this book while we were in North Carolina.  It was at the Rainforest exhibit at the North Carolina Museum of Science.  She and I are going through it slowly and learning bits about the rainforest.  Normally what I do, is read the information to her, and we watch a video about that topic I find on Youtube.  We found a video on the plant she was coloring today.

 Their finished dresses for the 100 Dresses project their Scout troop is working on.  Lydia didn't want to paint, just colored pencils. She and I looked up pictures of dress patterns and then I helped her draw the styles and then she colored them.  I started out cutting Caty's patterns, and then today she finished making her own dresses on the left.  She loved this project, because she was getting to paint.  I don't think I packed enough paint.  I may have to find a Hobby Lobby around here.
Since we saw Jeff Koons display at Rockefeller Center yesterday, we did some art based on him today.
Caty did a version of this....
She called it her wild art....don't get it.  But that is art.

Lydia liked the bunny......

We also watched a video on Jeff Koons

I wish I would've taken the time to paint with the girls this time.  But I was working with the boys while they painted.  I would've painted these.  Can't wait to see more of his art at the art museums this next week.

 Joey thought this was cool!
 This is similar to the piece in Rockefeller Center.  But it's called Puppy.
More adventures to come.....14 more days in NYC.  And then back to the midwest and possibly Chicago!!  I have several posts scheduled from the last few weeks adventures.  Hope you enjoy seeing what we have been up too.

I have been inspired to start a new series of traveling in your own state.  I will be starting with our own state of Ohio next week.  I highlight great places to visit and historical places to see.

Hope everyone had a great week!!!  See you soon!!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Library and Educational Services - Go Science DVDs Review

We recently had the privilege to review two DVDs from the Go Science line of education movies (series 2).  These are available for purchase from Library and Educational Services.  

The Go Science DVD series was created for kids ages 4 - 12 by Ben Roy, a professor of science methods at the University of Tennessee.  He also was a director of a science program on television.  Go Science Series is creation based, Christian science DVD series that includes a reminder that God is the creator of all things.  He presents scientific topics in a fun and attention grabbing way, making it a great series for students that are having trouble enjoying science.

We had the opportunity to try out:


The list price for these DVDs is $14.95 per title, but each is priced at $8.97.  

Each DVD is roughly an hour long and is broken into short sections.  The Life Science DVD was a huge hit and I have watched it several times now.  Each little section is broken down in such a way to cover each topic on a child's level.  It worked out great for Caty's and Lydia's short attention spans.  

Each section usually has some sort of experiment.  Now some of the experiments we could do at home ourselves because they were everyday items.  The girls were doing the spider eyes experiment with a flashlight in our hotel room.  They thought that cool.

Other experiments though could not be done with everyday items and did require specialty items that only science labs or schools with large budgets would have.  That was a little disappointing to the girls, but he gives a full explanation and you can watch the experiments being performed.  I chalked that one up to less work for me....since I didn't have to chase down weird parts and clean up a mess.  I easily let the girls re-watch the episode repeatedly.

We used these as supplements for materials we were already learning.  You could easily use these to plan your entire science curriculum around though.  The one thing I wish there was is a teacher packet with extra resources available for download.  If you choose to plan your curriculum around each episode, you may have to look up extra materials depending on the level of your student.  This is not a DVD of just experiments.  Mr. Roy gives good explanations about each topic and includes experiments.

I really did like the Go Science DVDs that we have and I plan on purchasing the rest of them.  They make great supplement for the boys, who seem to be wanting to get away from their old favorite cartoon science show.  The length of the episodes are ideal for their attention spans.  I can choose how much we should watch each day.  They are just great to pop in and watch if you need a quiet afternoon watching educational programs for any reason.  The cost available to homeschoolers through Library and Educational Services is phenomenal.  

The only thing I will warn you about, they are very much Christian based.  If you are looking for Creation based science, these are definitely the science videos for your family.  Mr. Roy does refer in each segment about the glory of God and encourages families in their faith in God through science.  They are Creation-based Science.

There are many titles to choose from, so be sure to visit the Go Science Series page at Library and Educational Services.

The DVD Volumes include:
  • Volume 1: Sound, Gravity, Space
  • Volume 2: Life Science, Weather
  • Volume 3: Air
  • Volume 4: Motion, Friction, Electricity, Light
  • Volume 5: States of Matter, Water
  • Volume 6: Chemistry
  • Volume 7: Engineering, Design, Flight
Several members of the Schoolhouse Review Crew were given the opportunity to try out the various Go Science DVD series titles.  Please take some time to visit their blogs and see how they worked for their families.

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