Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Snow Day

We have had a rare snowstorm this week, and are enjoying being home in the snow. Our area will often get a bit of snow each winter, but we usually only get an inch or two before it melts and goes away. In our yard we have over 7 inches, and it is supposed to stick around for another day or two. We continue with some of our book work, but we also took some time out to learn about snow and have some fun.

5 1/2 inches above the 2 we had from earlier

We've really been enjoying watching the birds at our feeders. We enjoy them from inside the warmth of our home but also sitting quietly outside in the snow and watching them fly over and around us. We can hear the whoosh of feathers and the calls and chirps they make.

We've had a Townsend's Warbler around, which we don't see very often. We like their bright yellow colors and their black masks.

Lots of little footprints in the snow on the porch.

Snow science

We found a neat website that explains how snowflakes form, and all kinds of information about their shapes. We read about how they are usually 6-sided, because of the bonds of hydrogen and oxygen in water. We tried to interpret the chart explaining which snowflakes form at which concentrations of moisture and temperature. Then we took our printed snowflake chart outside to catch snowflakes on black card stock, to try to see what we were getting. Our snow was tiny needles.

Tiny needles of snow on black paper

The kids pulled Daddy on the sled

Finally, we made maple syrup candy, just like they did in the pioneer days (such as in the Little House series). We boiled the maple syrup to the soft ball stage, then poured it into waiting pans of snow. It hardened into candy! Not that great for fillings or braces, but oh, so yummy. I used for the recipe, since it seemed to be the most basic.

Boiling maple syrup

Poured onto cake pans full of snow

Our finished candy, on paper towels to soak up the snow bits

We've had a great day! Now I need to stoke the wood stove again, and get some warm stew cooking for dinner.


Unknown said...

What a wonderful day for you all. The candy sounds scrumptious. Did you save some?

Anonymous said...

I can't believe how much snow we've gotten here. It's still snowing at our house.

That maple candy sounds delicious. I may have to try it out.