Monday, October 17, 2016

Seth's Little Friend

We found this brown praying mantis on the sidewalk a few Saturdays ago while walking home from Seth's football game.  I noticed that it was struggling a little because it had a problem with one of its front legs.  We took it home, made a cozy little habitat for it, and fed it live flies which it caught and ate.  Eventually, though, it died and we were all sad (except Lydia who thought it was totally gross).  Seth was only consoled when I reminded him that it probably would have died sooner if we had not taken it in because of the problem with its front leg.  The cadets at church started an insect collection so this little guy will find his way onto the wall in the cadet room.

This is not the "cozy" habitat.  This is before we moved it to its new home.

Casual Co-op Zoo

Spooky hyenas

Always a favorite, the snow leopard

Prairie Dog enclosure

Anteaters have really cool tongues!

MAF Tour

Several years ago when Pieter and Anja van Dijk came to Nampa for MAF training, they worshiped at Cloverdale URC.  At that time the church made a decision to support them when they went out into the mission field.  The have been ministering in Nabire, Papua, Indonesia.  They came back the States this fall (first time in almost 10 years!) for Pieter to complete additional training at MAF.  We were privileged to hear him speak in our church regarding what it is like to be a MAF pilot and visited with him a little more over dinner at the Vander Stelts.  We were also grateful he was willing to assist in giving us a tour of MAF headquarters in Nampa while he was here.

We learned about some of the modifications that need to be made to the MAF planes prior to being sent into the field:  antennas, wheel flaps, cargo holds, and stripes on the propellers.  The stripes on the propellers makes them visible so people know to stay away from them. 

This is an engine that can be worked on for practice so pilots can maintain their planes.

Sitting in the cockpit.  Who knew the planes were so small!

The MAF building has the remains of Nate Saint's plane which was found in 1994.  

Casual Co-op Apple Picking

Beautiful Emmett, ID

The kids climbed that huge hill behind Lydia after we picked apples and while the moms visited. 

Photo-bombed by Levi

Lydia and her friend, Ella

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Bike Riding the Greenbelt--Co-op Activity

Last Thursday we met at Veteran's Park near downtown Boise and rode our bikes a few miles down the Greenbelt and back.  The kids enjoyed a few runs on a dirt bike hill/path and absolutely loved the "Terabithia" tree in the park.   Anna did not have school due to conferences so she joined our group for the afternoon.  It is truly a lovely place and time of year to bike and enjoy the river and color changes on the trees.

A few chain issues

Yellow Jackets

We may not have those pesky little black bugs that can totally ruin a beautiful fall day in the Midwest, but we do have a problem with yellow jackets.  After Russ and Nicolas were both stung in the backyard in late summer, Russ declared a full out war against these critters.  He found their nests, sprayed, and put up these traps.  I think it is finally safe to hang out in our backyard again.  Hope we still have a few more weeks of nice weather to enjoy it!

We have two of these, both having quite a few victims.

Bald Eagle

After reading the posted signs about watching your pets and not being too noisy due to a bald eagle nesting along the Boise River in Eagle, we've been looking all spring and summer.  We thought we spotted one once, but it came and disappeared so quickly we couldn't be sure.  Osprey also nest in the area so if you don't look closely, one big bird can look like another.  But finally, two weeks ago while I was walking the river with a friend early on a Friday morning, we spotted the bald eagle in the tree.  I only wish the kiddos were with me (and my good camera).