Matthew and I felt sick of the usual routine today and found ourselves procrastinating the job of getting down to school work this morning. So shortly before noon, we packed up our h/schooling curriculum and pencils etc, and headed out to an environmental centre nearby. We spent the rest of the day varying school with walks, lunch and snacks! It was awesome. An additional treat was how quiet and peaceful it was there today; sometimes there can be a number of school groups visiting, as well as lots of other people. But today was a slow day there, and we loved it. After a bit of lunch and completion of Matthew's Math lesson, we went for a long walk. What a day - a little crisp, but refreshing and bright and sunny...vest weather. As we were walking on the boardwalks that cover the swampy waters, we heard little chirps and squeaks of some creature in the water. We stopped to take a look and were surprised to see a few creatures actively swimming around: muskrats; and a small beaver! We sat down on the boardwalk for a while, just to enjoy ten minutes of the ongoings. It was "a very special time," to quote Matthew. It was so quiet that we could every noise they made, along with the huge Canada goose that kept paddling by to watch what they, and we, were doing! We walked on paths, splashed in puddles, and stopped for almost a half hour at a teepee on the lake, where Matthew was convinced he could start a fire by dropping rocks onto firewood...and who am I to discourage the fun he had trying! When we finally went back to one of the buildings to watch the burrowing owls and prairie dogs, and to play Eye Spy with the fish in the tanks (matching them to the named fish pictures on the wall), we even met another h/schooling Mom I'd never met before (with four kids - how to people do this??!!) and we had a lovely chat.
Finally, back in the restaurant/cafeteria area, we settled down at a table again, this time with a mug of hot chocolate and a cookie, and we finished another school lesson. Let me tell you, there were no complaints coming from either of us as we sat there peacefully and worked at school. It was a fine way to work, and I think we might do this again in a few weeks' time...just to change things up a bit.