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Welcome! Our blog focuses on environmental conservation, education, green living & wildlife rescue! We have put together links to resources, books and information to help you and your children learn more about these topics. Please feel free to comment on any items posted. Rate or review us on NetworkedBlogs (Facebook app) & Blogged. Tell your friends about us. Follow us on Twitter and other sites listed on this page. There's a banner & widget if you would like to include us on your webpage. All we ask is that you please keep any comments here G-rated for the kids!

NOTE: The birds & squirrel pictured at the top of this page and in the slideshow below are just a few that I have helped rehabilitate.
WARNING: Please do not touch a wild animal, especially the young ones. If you remove a baby from it's home, sometimes the mother is just off getting it's baby food and will be back.

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Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas!!

Those of us here at GreenSpot-On would like to wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

A few quotes for you to ponder this Christmas:

"Christmas is the season for kindling the fire of hospitality in the hall, the genial flame of charity in the heart." - Washington Irving

"Happy, happy Christmas, that can win us back to the delusions of our childhood days, recall to the old man the pleasures of his youth, and transport the traveler back to his own fireside and quiet home !" - Charles Dickens

"When we recall Christmas past, we usually find that the simplest things-not the great occasions-give off the greatest glow of happiness." - Bob Hope

Have a safe and happy holiday!

Sincerely,
GreenSpot-On

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Christmas Craftiness #2

Hello Everyone! I am listing a couple more ideas for Christmas Crafts! This time for adults only!!

Aluminum Can Luminaries: Do you have left over aluminum cans from you pumpkun pie filling or the canned baby formula that you haven't recycled yet, but want a fun craft to do for a gift? Why not make them into luminaries!

Materials:
Aluminum Can (Large Baby formula or Pumpkin Pie Filling Can)
Hammer
Nails
Sturdy Cardboard
Marker
Paint (Spray paint or acryllic)
Large Rubber Band
Saran Wrap
Water
Small Candle holder (Cheap from a dollar store)
Votive Candles (Again cheap from a dollar store)
Cat Litter or Sand

Instructions:
1. Make a template out of dots (Punch holes into a piece of cardboard with a nail). A prety simple one is a snowflake.

2. Useing a permanent marker; use your template to transfer the dots onto the can. Use it multiple times around the can with enough space between the individual designs.
3. Fill the can with water, put the top back on it. If there is no top, fill it with water, then take saran wrap and a sturdy cloth with a large rubber band. Wrap the end with the saran wrap with the cloth over it and secure it with the rubber band.
4. Freeze the can overnight.
5. When completely frozen take a small hammer and a nail and punch it on the dots you made on the can. You may have to refreeze the can in between individual designs so it doesn't start leaking on you badly. The reason you want the can completely frozen is so that the force of you hammering the nail into the dots doesn't dent your can. When you get all of your dots punched, you can empty the can and let it dry completely.
6. After it is done drying, take the can and either spray paint the outside or you can use acrylic paint and paint the outside with a design. With the snowflake design, I really liked using a dark blue, that was shimmery and silver on the dots I punched (so it would show up when it wasn't lit).
7. The last part to this is to get a cheap, short glass candleholder that you can put inside the can with a tealight candle or equivalent.
8. Put either a cup of fresh catlitter or sand in the can (To help keep the can from heating up). Then you can set your candleholder with candle inside.
9. You are now ready to light your luminary!

Christmas with Grapevine: I am lucky enough to have access to grapevine in my own yard. I have to cut it back each year. Instead of getting rid of it I use it for many things. Try a grapevine ornament ball! I'll write up instructions for it when I try it, hopefully with pictures. Stay tuned!

Sincerely,
Khrys @ GreenSpot-On
Link: http://unhub.com/GreenSpotOn/17979
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Saturday, December 5, 2009

Christmas Craftiness #1!

Happy Holidays Everyone! I wanted to give everyone an idea that would be fun for kids, plus give them a chance to reuse items for gifts that were from your own household that would otherwise be thrown out or just left unused.

Pine Cone Christmas Tree: My sons and I did this craft recently at a school family night and it turned out really nice, so I thought I would share it here. The great thing about this craft is you are using a natural item that you can talk to your child about.

Materials:
One large, open pine cone
Glitter - Any color
Cotton balls
White school glue (like Elmer's)
Dental floss and a needle
Small beads or small pom-poms

Scissors
Construction Paper
A small bow or star to top off your little tree


Instructions:

1. Glue a few cotton balls to the bottom of the pine cone. These will look like snow at the base of the tree and help the tree stand upright.

2. Put a little dab of glue at the tips of the pine cone and then sprinkle on glitter of any color (You can spread it a bit with your finger, but keep a washcloth or damp paper towel nearby for cleanup reasons).

3. String some small beads or pom-poms onto dental floss (usually about 1 - 1 1/2 ft or more, depending on the size of your pine cone). To string the beads easier, tie one bead securely to the string. Then give the floss to your child for stringing. An older child can use a needle to help with the stringing beads or pom-poms. When the garland is done, tie off the last bead with a knot. Wrap the beads around the pine cone like a Christmas garland and glue it to the tree. In the picture on the right we used mardi-grad or party beads. My children usually get these at different times of the year and they usually break pretty quickly, so why not recycle them!

4. Top off your tree with a small bow or other decorations (We used a scrap piece of construction paper to make a star), you could make an angel or even ornaments with it for your pine cone tree.

5. Let the glue dry completely and use it for a centerpiece on your dinner table or other place of honor in your home!

Crystal Snowflake: This project also doubles as a science project! Make your very own snowflake!

Materials:
Wide mouthed canning/mason jar
3 light colored pipe cleaners (white or light blue would be best)
String
Scissors
Pencil
Boiling water (Adults should boil & pour the water)
Spoon
Borax (20 Mule Team Borax Laundry Booster)
Optional: blue food coloring


Instructions:
1. Make a snowflake frame from 3 white pipe cleaners and a string. Twist the 3 pipe cleaners together in the center to make a asterick or star shaped figure.
The figure should be able to fit inside the wide-mouthed jar.


2. Tie the string around the pipe cleaners to look like a snowflake or spiderweb. Trim all excess string.

3. Tie a few inches of string to one of the pipe cleaners to make a loop for hanging. Take the pencil and put it through the loop, so that the snowflake will hang from the pencil and dangle inside the jar.
Take the snowflake back out of the jar.


4. Pour boiling water into the jar (An adult should do this part for safety reasons).
Add about 3 tablespoonfuls of the Borax to each cup of hot water in the jar.
You should have a supersaturated solution (you will see some undissolved Borax at the bottom of the jar).
Optional: Add a few drops of the blue food coloring to the solution for a bluish colored snowflake.


5. Using the pencil, hang the snowflake in the jar and wait at least 24 hours.
After this time has passed, your snowflake will be covered with crystals.
As the solution cools, the borax comes out of the solution (less of the borax will dissolve in the cooler water) and crystals form upon the pipe cleaners and string.

NOTE: If you do not have borax in your house but want to still do the project, you can do the same type of project using supersaturated sugar-water (but the crystals will take alot longer to form). The sugar water version will make an edible rock candy. The Borax version IS NOT edible, so please be careful if you try both versions with your children so they don't confuse the two.

Christmas Cards: As Daisy previously mentioned, old christmas cards can be reused to make new ones. However, you can also make a great picture frame out of them for your child's school pictures or even a holiday photo you took and send it as a Christmas Card! Let your child decorate it with old buttons, glue and other finds around the house that you would otherwise throw away. You can use paint on the buttons to give them a new look!

We here at GreenSpot-On have been pretty busy at our homes preparing for Christmas and the family parties that come around every year. You may not hear much from us until after the New Year, so please be patient with us during this time. We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Sincerely,
Khrys @ GreenSpot-On
Link: http://unhub.com/GreenSpotOn/17979
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Twitter: @GreenSpotOn
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Monday, November 23, 2009

Being green when the ground is - brown

My herbs moved inside. The basil died, the rosemary is fading, and the oregano is stretching toward its sole source of light, the bay windows on the south side of the house. Meanwhile, I'm planting another type of idea: reusing holiday cards.

Armed with last year's cards and a few pairs of craft scissors, I attacked. Scraps to the recycling, potential tags to the tag box, and we're set for another year. This is the kind of repurposing that both feels good and looks good. I haven't spent money on tags since we were married 25 years ago, and the packages always look great.



Now it's on to the presents - I wonder if anyone in my family will get me the Aerogarden I've suggested?

Monday, November 9, 2009

Rake, rake, rake.

What to do with the leaves after raking? Well, we could have raked them into the street like the rest of the city does. The crews pick them up, drag dump truck upon dump truck full of leaves to the brush dump, and pile them up to become mulch. City residents can then bring their buckets and trash cans and fill them with mulch for free. I've done it in the past, and I'll do it again I'm sure.

But me? Daisy? The author of the family blog Compost Happens? I choose to keep my leaves in my own yard, giving my garden a warm blanket for the winter. The snow will arrive, sooner or later, and insulate the leaf pile. Eventually, the entire thing will either get tilled into the plot or decompose - or both.


The rest went on top of the new tomato plot - the one featured last week. We made it a little bigger, spread leaves and mulch on top, and settled the picnic table on top to help hold the leaves and newspaper/ cardboard barrier down until snowfall.
The trees, by the way, the silver maples that drop hundreds of leaves on my yard, do not even belong to me. They're in the yard behind ours, dropping helicopters in the spring and leaves in the fall. Some day maybe I'll plant a tree of my own -- or not. I get plenty of the benefits and the workload right now.
I'm participating in National Blog Posting Month - NaBloPoMo - on Compost Happens. Stop by any day; I'm posting daily for the month of November!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Autumn: time to plan for spring

We're planning to move the tomatoes next year. They need a location with direct sun, enough space to grow, and far enough from the peppers and other plants that the tomatoes don't steal their thunder, or sun, either. Our solution: a new plot, just for tomatoes. I'm trying something new, or new to me: the lasagna style preparation.
The first layer goes over the grass; layered newspaper or boxes. I chose boxes. Flattened out, held down by boards from an old deck, they'll make a fine base for the new tomato home.

The next layer: glass clippings, mulch. If I'd spread these a few weeks ago, they'd have been the last grass clippings of the season. Between parent-teacher conference preparation and a nasty chest cold, I didn't get outside for a while. That's fine; the mulch that was grass a few weeks ago will do a fine job.



I had to stop there. Due to the still lingering cough (see above), I had to stop after spreading mulch. My next layer, when I get the time and energy, will be leaves, raked over to cover the mulch. The new plot will winter that way, the layers killing the lawn beneath and insulating the future garden soil at the same time.
Come spring, I'll have a decision to make. To till or not to till? I'm tempted to say not, and build up a raised bed instead by piling soil and compost on top of what's already prepped.
Check with me in April. I'll have a decision by then!

Monday, October 26, 2009

It's not H1N1, but...

You can tell I've been ill. Not H1N1, despite having almost half my class of fourth graders ill with flu-like symptoms, but I'm definitely not my usual Daisy-like self. A few giveaways:
A beautiful October day, and I didn't even open a window.

  • I didn't know that the bunny's litter box was due for a change until after my late shower cleared my sinuses enough to smell its, er, condition.
  • I haven't been online in three days.
  • I napped on and off all day, ignoring the lovely autumn weather.
  • I found Mythbusters hilarious, but hoped they composted the banana peels from their experiment involving slipperiness.
The biggest clue that I've been under the weather? I didn't take out the kitchen compost until after supper. It was near overflowing with three coffee filters, a stale PBJ, and more. A lovely day, the kind of day I'd like to be setting up the garden for winter by covering it with a blanket of leaves, pulling the mint or cutting back the mums, and all I did was rest on the couch.

Maybe the saying is all wrong - it would have been better if it were raining!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

About the National Green Pages



I just found this wonderful resource! Very exciting:


The National Green Pages™ is a directory listing nearly 3,000 businesses that have made firm commitments to sustainable, socially just principles, including the support of sweatshop-free labor, organic farms, fair trade, and cruelty-free products.


For every category of conventional consumer goods and services, there are green businesses that can meet your needs. The National Green Pages™ lists baby care products, organic, fair trade, flavored teas, and fuel-efficient cars for rent among the thousands of products. With each purchase you make through the National Green Pages™, you know you’re supporting truly green businesses.

So, What's a Green Business?


Green businesses operate in ways that solve, rather than cause, both environmental and social problems. These businesses adopt principles, policies, and practices that improve the quality of life for their customers, their employees, communities, and the environment. Green businesses listed in Green America’s National Green Pages™ have passed a screening process that qualifies them for membership in our Green Business Network.

Ok, so this is all I have to offer this week. I'm growing EXTREMELY busy with my coursework and other responsiblities. Here's a quote that will serve to foreshadow next week's entry (which everyone, kids and adults alike, will be happy to read I'm sure):

I’m enthusiastic about the idea of adding to the Halloween traditional sense of sustainability and responsibility to our children."

-Mark Cross, Mayor of the City of Sammamish, WA

Happy Wednesday! -BA

Monday, October 12, 2009

Top Ten Ways to Enjoy a Backyard Kitchen Garden

As I'm putting my garden to bed for the winter, I always reminisce a little. It's a bittersweet time, watching the plants turn brown and brittle after the first killing frost but realizing the freezer is full of delicious produce that will carry the nutrition and taste into winter. Here are my top ten ways to enjoy a backyard kitchen garden.

10. Watch the bean vines grow higher and higher.
9. Sneak a fresh raspberry before the rest of the family sees them.
8. Harvest lettuce and tomato for your BLT while the bacon is cooking.
7. Clip fresh herbs for a sauce or salad, making the kitchen smell great.
6. Freeze spinach and add it to everything.
5. Admire the cute little cauliflower head alongside the blooming broccoli.
4. Have a zucchini give-away contest: the most creative idea wins (Just don't announce that the winner gets all the zucchini).
3. Make a garden vegetable soup in the crockpot; take the leftovers to work and gloat that you grew your own soup.
2. Bake rhubarb muffins - in January, from your frozen stash of rhubarb.
1. Serve fresh food to the family, nutritious and delicious.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Great Green Fall Activities

It's always sad to say goodbye to the relaxing warmth of summer. I love being able to head to the beach for the weekend, going canoeing with friends, the joy of spending the evening on the patio, and the freedom to grill out or go camping. Luckily, here in the MidWest summer flows rather smoothly into Fall... lots of produce to harvest, the autumn leaves, warm clothes, turning off the A/C, and of course, all of my favorite Fall activities.

Here are some ideas of how to welcome the gorgeous autumn weather by heading outside and enjoying the season the "green" way:

Build a greener tailgate. Enjoy football season (or the end of baseball season) by celebrating with organic beers, recycling all the waste, composting, and eating locally. In 2007 the College of Arts & Sciences at Michigan State University took the initiative to host/advocate for green tailgating featuring locally grown food, limiting packaging waste, and reducing energy consumption:





Go apple picking. Take kids and friends to a local orchard and enjoy the best apples the area has to offer. Enjoy local cider, caramel apples, and the fresh local pies that support your local farmers. In Michigan my favorite is Uncle John's Cider Mill on US-127 North of St. John's. Everything is SO yummy and organic:





Go hiking at the peak of autumn color. Find out when the autumn leaves will be at their peak of color and head out on an awesome hike to enjoy it firsthand. Here in Ohio the leaves are just beginning to change, so I hope that I'll get a chance to scope out a few places like the Cuyahoga River Valley (pictured below) and the National Park. The Ohio DNR also offers a navigational site that highlights Ohio's Fall foliage and peak color season.




Visit a pumpkin patch. Instead of getting your pumpkin at the grocery store, head straight to the source. Take the kids to a local pumpkin patch so they can learn where pumpkins come from and how they grow. Uncle John's (that I mentioned above) is also a great place to go:





I hope these ideas will pique your interests in seeking out an environmental-friendly autumn!

Happy Wednesday! -BA

Monday, October 5, 2009

Rain has its own beauty.

Rain. The flowers are gone, the vegetables are (mostly) canned and frozen, but the rain still comes. It'll soak into the garden soil, help decompose the brush pile and compost bin, and still do the ground some good.


I'm mourning the summer farm markets already. I'll pick up as much as I can in these last few weeks. After that, all garden vegetables will come from the freezer. In the meantime, I'll start browsing the seed catalogs and setting up the new area for tomatoes. I love autumn, but the end of the garden season makes me a little sad.
Photos by La Petite, who loves flowers after a storm.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Houseplants Help to Heal

Living plants add natural beauty to our homes and workplaces. Among the wide variety of leaf shapes and growth habits, there are plants to enhance almost any decor. But in addition to their beauty, houseplants are also a valuable weapon against indoor air pollution. They can absorb harmful chemicals and improve air quality, making your home or office a more pleasant place to live or work. Even NASA has found this to be true! Above is one of my own indoor plants that is kept in a self-watering window box that I've placed on the top counter next to my kitchen sink (If you carefully count, you'll see that my peace lily has SEVEN blossoms right now! Maybe that is some type of karma!)

The most common harmful airborne chemicals found in the average home or office are formaldehyde, benzene, trichloroethylene, and carbon monoxide. Even in low concentrations, these chemicals can cause a variety of health problems. Formaldehyde is found in virtually all indoor environments. It is used in particle board or pressed wood products to make office or household furniture, in many consumer paper products, in carpets, permanent-pressed clothes, water repellents, and fire retardants. Other sources of formaldehyde include natural gas, kerosene, and cigarette smoke. Formaldehyde irritates the membranes of the eyes, nose, and throat and can cause headaches and allergic dermatitis. It is suspected of causing a rare type of lung cancer in cases of long-term exposure. Benzene is present in inks, oils, paints, plastics, and rubber. It is also used in the manufacturing of detergents, dyes, and some pharmaceuticals. In addition to irritation of the eyes and skin, chronic exposure to even low levels of benzene causes headaches, loss of appetite, drowsiness, psychological disturbances, and disease of the blood system, including anemia. Trichloroethylene is used by the dry cleaning industry and in printing inks, paints, varnishes, and adhesives. This chemical is considered to be a potent liver carcinogen. Carbon monoxide is found in cigarette smoke and is produced by the incomplete combustion of fuel. Exposure to low levels can cause drowsiness and headaches.

Researchers have identified several varieties of houseplants that excel in removing these chemical pollutants from the air. The most effective in removing formaldehyde were philodendron, spider plant, and golden pothos. Since all plants utilize carbon in the process of producing new growth, all these varieties are effective in removing low levels of carbon monoxide. Other varieties found to be especially effective in cleaning the air were English ivy, Chinese evergreen, bamboo palm, snake plant (mother-in-law’s tongue), and several other types.

All plants produce oxygen through the process of photosynthesis. Thus any plants you choose, in addition to the varieties named here, will increase the concentration of oxygen in their immediate surroundings. In general, one large plant per 100 square feet of space is sufficient to clean the air in an average home or office. A more heavily polluted environment would require a greater concentration of plants.

Most of these houseplants are relatively easy to grow in moderate to bright indirect sunlight or under florescent lighting. Avoid windows or glass doors where sunlight shines directly on the plants, except for flowering mums and gerbera daisy, which thrive in sunlight. Ivy, palm, philodendron, spider plant, and dracaena are all susceptible to spider mites. To prevent infestations, mist often and avoid hot, dry air. The pots may be set in trays of pebbles in water to provide moisture around the plants. Make sure the bottoms of the pots are above the level of the water. Beware of overwatering any plant, the most common cause of houseplant deaths. Golden pothos, Chinese evergreen, and snake plant should not be misted and should be allowed to dry out between watering to keep the roots healthy.

How often you feed your plants depends on the type of food you use. Follow directions on the plant food container. Always water your plants with tepid water. If you use chlorinated water, allow it to sit for at least 24 hours so the chlorine can evaporate. If possible use rainwater or bottled (not demineralized) water.

To beautify your surroundings, and breathe a little easier, add several of these living air cleaners to your home and work spaces. You will feel better and make your indoor environments more pleasant for living and working... which is what I found with my planter over the sink in my kitchen =)

Happy Wednesday! -BA

Monday, September 28, 2009

The remains after the pruning

It happens in the fall. Our schools are still on the old-fashioned agrarian calendar, so I start teaching in September. My garden gets neglected during the week. Somehow, it survives - some days, barely survives. I had some powder mildew in the squash plants, so I trimmed the infected leaves and set them aside to dry. They won't be composted, for fear of the mildew not getting fully destroyed. But thanks to my teaching schedule and evening workload, I didn't get to the pruning until a large number of leaves and stems were infected. After I finished, this was all that was left.
Not to worry, though. That meager collection of vines has at least four of these still growing. In fact, after I put away the clippers and cleaned up the icky leaves, I harvested a zucchini to cook with supper.



Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Enjoy the Classroom Outdoors

As I sit here in a classroom, festering away in a concrete block encased sarcophagus, listening to a boring lecture, I long to be outdoors. That said, maybe this is an alternative learning style that many of our kids, students, peers (and ourselves!) might also enjoy for many reasons. Here's a few tips of how we can do this courtesy of Outdoor Biology Instructional Strategies (OBIS):

1. Establish ground rules and outdoor routines- Make sure to prep students days before to be dressed for staying outside. Have a routine for gathering equipment, line up, exit and return
Go out a different door than you use for recess. Establish outdoor boundaries, and remind students to stay in first circle. Circle up with class at beginning and end of time outside. Identify an outdoor gathering cue (whistle, countdown to circle up.) Save the time for a closing circle before heading back inside.

2. Plan a “sacrificial” lesson- Just like starting the school year indoors, spend the time to practicing how to work outdoors as a class. At first this can seem a bit out of control, but trust that they will become focused and productive with time. Be prepared to take the privilege of learning away from the class if they misbehave. (They won't next time.) For younger students, be prepared to sacrifice the first lesson and take the class back inside if you have behavior problems. For older students, plan an option (asst principal is best) so you can send poorly behaved students back inside or an alternative for them the next time you go outside. You will find that it takes very little example for even your most challenging students (indoors) to become angels outside.

3. Get to know your schoolyard- Take several sessions outside to explore your site before diving into an activity. Note: Mapping a Study Site is a great activity for middle school students, and needs scaffolding for younger children. Let younger students poke around, have unstructured exploration time, “play” with the outdoor materials before focused study.

4. Be clear about the purpose of going outside-Clear expectations and conveying your intent of the activity is powerful when teaching science anywhere. It is particularly important to determine which experiences enhance learning occurring in the classroom, stimulate a child’s personal connection to nature, and allow children to reflect and be inspired by their connection. Give students concrete tasks to help focus their observations and thinking. With older students you can allow these tasks to become more open and abstract over time.

5. Every student should have something to carry- A notebook or tool in-hand helps students remember why they’re outside. Clipboards, measuring instruments, journals can be crucial in keeping younger students on-task. Always bring extra pencils and writing materials. Even older students can be forgetful or careless (sometimes conveniently if they are less inclined to write!)


These were useful in many ways for classes at every eductional level (e.g. like the one that I guest lecture in (which is a public speaking class.)) I also found a great handout here that can be passed along to others with a few tips/strategies for taking any type/age level of students outdoors to experience a different type of learning environment.

So these are my thoughts. I'll leave you all with a little tidbit from a piece that I wrote concerning eco-literacy and nature writing that will hopefully resonate for everyone out there that might be also enduring the pain of sitting in a tiny little desk inside a dark classroom:

"There are many things to be learned when considering nature writing. We begin to look outside ourselves, focusing on more complex notions rather than money or our own success. And if we actually do the learning for ourselves, immersing our minds into ecocriticism and the contemplation of our surroundings, we won’t hinge our knowledge on what others tell us or what they’ve seen. Emerson wrote, 'Stay at home in your mind. Don’t recite other people’s opinions. I hate quotations. Tell me what you know.' So by putting all of these authors’ citations aside, don’t we truly know what we know because of what we survey? I realize that I’m more knowledgeable when presented with information from the outside. Regardless of what was written decades ago about the environment by already mindful authors, what I know is that writing this essay would be more educational for me if I was outdoors observing the subject matter by which I am centering this argument. This is perfect evidence of how ecocriticism can influence one’s outlook on the world-- I long to be outside right now."


On a cheerful note I'd like to say: Happy Wednesday! - BA

Monday, September 21, 2009

What does it mean when broccoli flowers?

I couldn't find broccoli seedlings anywhere, so I planted it from seed - much too late. A few plants are doing well -- at least I think they're doing well. What does it mean when broccoli develops flowers? Is it overripe? Is it ripening? I haven't had much success with broccoli (or cauliflower, either) in the past, so this is all new.

It's a lovely sunny day, and it was hard to isolate the broccoli in a decent picture. Later tonight I'll get at the squash plants (powder mildew, must prune), and I'll stare at the broccoli and wonder what on earth happened here - or if perhaps it's just growing the way it's supposed to grow. Gardening, after all, is a learning process.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Happy Wheatland!

The 36th annual Wheatland Music Festival took place this weekend in Remus, MI from 9/11-9/13. Man, did we have a great time! I was very happy to attend with one of my best friends Joy (whom also happens to be one of the originators of this blog) because she has been going for around 20 years now with family and has a lot of memories to share with someone like me. Compared to my measly two visits, I can say that Joy is well-versed in the art of a wonderful Wheatland experience.

So what is this all about? Wheatland Music Organization, Inc., founded in 1974, is a charitable and educational organization that has grown from offering a single event, to offering activities year-round, to meet its mission of preserving and presenting the traditional arts. Traditional arts are considered those learned person to person, passed from generation to the next, and influenced by culture, family, ethnicity, and era. Over 200 traditional artists from across the nation are contracted each year to present at the annual festival, traditional arts weekend and many community education outreach programs. Their yearly highlight is is the Wheatland Music Festival.

The annual Wheatland Music Festival is held the first weekend after Labor day in September. Each year at the festival thousands of people converge on a 160-acre festival site to enjoy a wide variety of activities, as well as the star-studded lineup on the main stage. There is a juried arts and crafts show, a raffle, children’s activities, teen and young adult activities, instrument and dance workshops, music, food, fellowship, and fun. Impromptu jam sessions can be found throughout the campgrounds all weekend long.

After arriving to the festival grounds on Friday, Joy and I set up our campsite and began enjoying ourselves. We learned a lot about the music, experienced the social aspects, ate some great food, and witnessed some very interesting prospects for the blog, the community, involving children, and green-living in general. A list of the performers can be found here. Also, here are a few of the photos that I shot (the others can be found in my FB album entitled Wheatland 2009):






On a side note, we would also like to showcase some of the information that we garnered from a booth at Wheatland that was dedicated to the Mount Pleasant Discovery Museum (there is a photo of their Wheatland Returnables Initiative in the slideshow above.) Suprisingly, this is a new opportunity in the Central Michigan area that is dedicated to developing a children's museum for the greater Mt Pleasant, Michigan community. Joy and I were extremely excited about this for many reasons... the main one being that there is no such environment like this in the area. It would be wonderful to establish a museum of this type for the community.

The mission of the Mount Pleasant Discovery Museum is to spark creativity, nourish learning, and inspire the curiosity of children through self-directed discovery in an engaging, hands-on environment. Core values include the following:

• All children deserve respect.

• Families are important as children’s first teachers.
• Learning occurs in different ways.
• Stewardship of the Earth is everyone’s responsibility.

• Communities are diverse and connected.

Below is a good taste of what they're all about. If you're in the area and are an advocate for developing a learning environment for the area's kids, we suggest at least checking out the website.








So as you can see, we had a great weekend and hope that our readers can also check out these green gatherings.

Happy Wednesday! Cheers- BA

Monday, September 14, 2009

Let the kids in the garden, too!



When my daughter was young, she would help me pick tomatoes. She made it harder than it needed to be; she'd come out with a tiny basket and a stuffed animal to keep her company. One tomato would fit in the basket, and then the stuffed dog would go into it, too. I didn't mind; she enjoyed the process and actually ate the tomatoes later. She learned to love fresh green beans, too, but to this day prefers them fresh off the vine and uncooked.

At age three she described a tiny bug to me and asked if I knew what it was. I thought it was a slug and said so. She came in a few minutes later with it cupped in her hands: "Look, Mommy, isn't it cute?" Well, in her eyes, it was. She cared enough to bring it back outside and into its habitat, and then washed her hands well before supper (I reminded her, believe me).

Now she's in college, age 22, and still enjoys being outside and seeing the garden grow. She's more skilled in choosing and growing flowers than she is vegetables, so I let her take over the deck and the south side of the house. Occasionally she chases a slug away from the leaves, but she won't kill it; she still thinks slugs are cute.

She also has an eye for beauty that goes beyond cute crawling creatures. The photo at the top is one of hers. I encourage parents to keep bringing their children outside and let them explore - even the creatures we might think aren't so cute. It can expand their views and stretch their horizons in ways we can't fully predict.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Stuff, Stuff, Stuff, Buy, Buy, Buy

Welcome Wednesday! For everyone that is interested and/or concerned with the rate at which we are purchasing new things, please watch this mini-movie by Annie Leonard:


The Story of Stuff is a 20-minute, fast-paced, fact-filled look at the underside of our production and consumption patterns, with a special focus on the United States. All the stuff in our lives, beginning from the extraction of the resources to make it, through its production, sale, use and disposal, affects communities at home and abroad, yet most of this is hidden from view. The Story of Stuff exposes the connections between a huge number of environmental and social issues and calls for all of us to create a more sustainable and just world. It'll teach you something. It'll make you laugh, and it just may change the way you look at all the stuff in your life forever. Written by Leonard, the film was produced by Free Range Studios the makers of other socially-minded, web-based films such as “The Meatrix” and “Grocery Store Wars.” Funding for the project came from The Sustainability Funders and Tides Foundation.

I found this to be a very informative and influential look at US culture and capitalism in general. It might be a good teaching tool and great resource to pass on to our kids concerning how we can begin to conceptualize other alternatives besides buying, buying, and more buying.

Stay tuned for next week's entry when we return from Wheatland!

Until Next Week! Cheers- BA

Monday, September 7, 2009

Mystery Squash: the sequel

After the first week of teaching, a week in which I was too busy to water, pick, or weed, I found these monster zucchini hiding under the large leaves of their lovely vines.

On the other end of the size spectrum, I saw these tiny yellow babies. This is not a problem. However, it is a surprise: I haven't planted yellow squash in two years or more. Where did these come from?

Remember the mystery plants that resemble white pumpkins? They've invited a cousin to come and stay for a while. Under the banana pepper plants lies this little beauty.


I almost don't dare say it, but I have to wonder what's next. I don't know how these other seeds got here, but they're growing and thriving. What else came in on the wind or with a stray woodchuck or rabbit or bird?

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

How Can We Love Our Indoor Pets and Our Environments?

Sticking with the established theme on Wednesdays, today I'd like to address another issue that I've been pondering that relates to my own experiences with striving to live a "greener" life. I recently lost one of my cats (RIP Bruce (that's a picture of him sunning himself to the left)) and have been spending a lot of extra time with my remaining domestic long-hair Gremlin (below.) She's been very needy lately... I'm actually sitting with her right now as she sleeps =)



It's been hard while I'm traveling to leave her home alone due to my own fear of what may happen to her while I'm gone and also because it is difficult to acclimate her to my reappearance after a few days. Needless to say, it's a good couple of hours of "Meow, meow, meow, meow, meow" from little Gremmers (and chasing me all over the apartment) when I get back. I've been considering getting another little friend for her, but haven't made a concrete decision yet if that's the best idea.


One thing that has also been weighing on my mind concerns our pets' impact on the environment. Our feline friends use a lot of products that can harm the planet. How can we be more eco-conscious with our pet purchases? For instance, Gremlin may be unaware about her impact on the environment, but I definitely am! Our cats leave more of a footprint behind than many of their owners know. Just think of all the plastics – cat food bowls, litter boxes, toys, etc. that we purchase and eventually throw away. Even the containers kitty products come in are typically plastic. And where does all that clay cat litter go? It doesn’t just go away!

With most families having more than one cat and the litter box rule being “have one litter box for every cat plus one,” creates a lot of kitty litter. Unfortunately, clay litters are the least expensive and the hardest on our environment. There are, however, a wide variety of environmentally friendly kitty litters on the market. Check out Feline Pine, Swheat Scoop, the World’s Best Cat Litter, and Yesterday’s News. Not only are they organic, but several of these litters can also be reused as mulch in your garden. Talk about a bargain! Most of these litters come in a bag rather than the big, plastic tubs, too. If you do use the plastic tub, simply recycle.

Lately I've also been considering buying a CatGenie even though they're quite expensive. This automatic self-washing litter box is the best in terms of green litter alternatives. It uses permanent washable granules that never need changing which are clean/dry (and also satisfy your cat’s need to dig and cover), it takes cat litter out of your life for good, and is tested/recommended by veterinarians.

Consequently, this may be an issue that most people don't enjoy addressing, but I thought this was the perfect medium for it. How can we love our indoor pets and love our environments at the same time?

Until next week! Cheers- BA

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Outcome of Rehabbing

So, the 4 squirrels I had are doing well ;) One of my friends has taken in 2 of them to divide up the work between the two of us. This is really late in the year to have as many squirrel calls, as we have been getting. Normally, spring time is squirrel time for us. We are working on figuring out a way to be able to do more rehabbing since there are limited amount of rehabbers in Isabella County.


Hopefully, over time, my two friends and I will be able to open our own rehab facility. It will take some time, some grant writing, and money.
But, with luck we will be able to eventually get something going more full-time.

One issue that we have had is, people who call us for rehab, seem to think that it is a paid position and that we should be able to transport and do anything at a drop of a hat.


Unfortunately, rehabbing has to come 2nd. We have jobs and families, so the rehabbing is done more on a volunteer basis. We put our own personal time into it as well as resources (funds, supplies, etc.)

So, if you ever find an animal and call a rehabber - remember they are doing it for the animals, not the money!

Sincerely,
JRouse @ GreenSpot-On
Link: http://unhub.com/GreenSpotOn/
Click Here for GreenSpot-On on YouTube

Monday, August 31, 2009

A second compost bin - don't wait for Christmas, honey

I'm a garden geek. My son calls me a green freak. My daughter? You'll see.


My husband, while he doesn't actively seek out green behaviors, supports my green proclivities. In fact, he brought home my first composter and later bought me a small city-girl sized pitchfork to go with it. Lately I've been hinting that I need a second compost bin. "What's wrong with this one?" he asked. I answered him, "Nothing's wrong with it; it's full."






That was in May. Luckily, compost shrinks (compacts) as it decomposes, making room for more. Now it's August, and the bin is filled to the brim with organic matter. It needs stirring, and then I'd really like to leave it alone for a full year - a full twelve months or more. That means next spring I would not empty the bin and till it into the garden soil; I'd let nature take its course until spring 2011 instead, giving everything a better chance to decompose completely. But meanwhile, where would my kitchen scraps and yard waste go? Enter the new composter.


My new composter is smaller and cuter than my big beautiful bin. It has some nice features, too. This composter has a base and an insert to keep the solids off the bottom and let the liquids, the "compost tea," drain off, and a spigot in front for collection. Compost tea makes a great fertilizer, I've been told.


When I want to empty the compost, I simply open the back. It stays open nicely, which will make it simple to shovel the rich soil enhancer into my wheelbarrow.


The holes in the sides have purpose: they allow air to circulate and speed up the process, and the holes are big enough that I can poke a broom handle or stick inside to aerate the compost itself. And last, I mentioned it's somewhat smaller than my old one. It's still a hefty size - big enough to fit a college senior inside. Yes, that's La Petite, modeling the new composter for all of my lovely readers.








This great new composter is from Algreen Products. It's available at GardenSuperMart.com. As soon as I decide where to place it, I'll post more pictures! Then I'll fill it with kitchen scraps and weeds and other organic goodies, and let the compost happen - naturally.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

The Right Way to Rescue

Make sure if you ever help take in an orphan animal that you understand what you are doing and if you don't, inquire and find someone that can help you!

This weekend was "squirrel rescue weekend," and I can't emphasize it enough: Make sure that you keep the animal warm and hydrated! 1st of course is getting the animal warm, then hydrating. Another issue is what you feed that animal that you take in.

The squirrels that I got today and last night had been fed kitten replacer milk, while puppy milk (Esbilac) is actually the closest thing to a squirrels milk. So if you, or someone you know takes in a squirrel (or other animal), please get it to an appropriately licensed rehabber who knows how to properly care for them right away. Often what happens, is a person will take in one of these orphaned animals with good intentions and plans to raise them on their own. Then a few days or maybe a week later we will get a call stating that they found a squirrel and that they have had it for a given number of days, and the squirrel seems ill. By the time they they actually seek help for it, it can often be too late!

So, please let anyone that you may know that takes in an animal to properly research and inquire on the care of the animal. In these times we are blessed with the availability of technology and being able to pretty much google any topic that we want to learn about. Here is one link that may help if someone ever gets into this situation:

http://www.squirrelstore.com - Has information for the care of orphaned squirrels and supplies (if needed)

REMEMBER *NEVER TRY AND FEED A COLD/DEHYDRATED ANIMAL*
FOLLOW THE APPROPRIATE PROTOCOL!!!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Recycling For One

If you thought cooking for one was difficult, just imagine how hard it can be recycling for one person! Yes, you're thinking: What?! There's so much less waste to account for! Sorting it and rinsing it would take so much less time!

You're right about those few things, but there are also several other elements to consider when living alone while trying to maintain a green initiative. I know it’s tough to look in the mirror and think that you, just one individual on a planet of billions, can do much that makes a difference. So I’ve been pondering what the value is — or is not — to my vigilance in recycling. Can I make a difference? Is my effort worth anything to the planet, especially in the face of so many non-believers who assume apathy to be the only medicine?

The first issue to consider is whether or not your apartment building or complex actually allows and participates in a recycling program. In single family homes, no more than 70 percent have access to curbside recycling. You may be passionate about separating your recyclables, but that doesn’t guarantee that your apartment manager feels the same way. Where I live, it seems that not many of my neighbors recycle, but starting the process in my townhouse was very doable.

Most cities offer various resources to help apartment complexes start recycling, and so did Bowling Green. All I had to do was take a quick trip to City Hall and request a recycling bin (which I didn't necessarily have to do, but I wanted it so that my neighbors could also visibly see that it was an option instead of using the dumpster.) Because I live alone, I am able to conveniently sort the contents of the bin when I arrive at the Recycling Center (which is paid for by the city and only about a mile from where I live.) The only unfortunate aspect about it's location is that it might be difficult for individuals to access if they do not drive (it's on the outskirts of town.)

What are some of the hurdles you must overcome so that you are able to recycle?

Does anyone find it as difficult as I do to commit to recycling when living alone?


To allow myself the peace of mind about cutting down on waste, I always try to consider that every last item that we don't throw away can be considered one small step towards a greener planet:




And remember, without you, it's all just trash!

Until next Wednesday! Cheers! -BA

Monday, August 24, 2009

Ten Places to Hide Zucchini


Two years ago I posted Ten Ways to Leave your Zucchini.
Last year the garden hardly produced any zucchini at all.
This year, we again have a bumper crop. Since you can simply click to find 10 Ways to Leave (and you don't have to slip out the back, Jack), I'll take another angle this time.

Beyond the Muffins: Ten Places to Hide Zucchini
1. Spaghetti sauce; the chunkier the better

2. Soup

3. Salads

4. Meatballs or Meatloaf

5. Lasagna

6. Scrambled eggs or omelets

7. Noodles/ Rice/ Orzo

8. Tacos, burritos, or quesadillas

9. Fruit cobbler or crisp



I have five, count 'em, FIVE (5!) large zucchini squash in the kitchen right now. I've already frozen quite a bit; these must be cooked or baked soon. Would you believe, I just baked chocolate zucchini bread muffins, too?

Friday, August 21, 2009

Grand Rapids, MI - Response to "The Answer is Blowing on the Wind"

This is a response to my fellow author BA’s post “The Answer is Blowing in the Wind” issued on August, 19, 2009. I could not put this in the comment section with her as there was too much to talk about when it comes to Grand Rapids, Michigan! Please see the links listed for more information.

An initiative by the City of Grand Rapids has been in place since 2005. Since than many things have occurred!

The newly renovated Grand Rapids Public School buildings or newly built schools have went greener (Some getting LEED certification)- Click HERE for more info. Businesses have been doing the same.
We have the nations first LEED Certified:
YMCA - Link
Art Museum - Link
Multi-modal transit center - The Rapid Link
Other Firsts - Click Here
We also has more LEED-certified buildings per capita than any other city in the U.S. and we are third overall. Grand Rapids currently has 1 Platinum, 8 Gold, 11 Silver LEED Certified buildings (49 total) and with a total Registered Project list of 101 Buildings/projects. LEED Certified Projects (Type in Grand Rapids, Michigan)



Grand Rapids ranked 20th on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) list of cities with the most ENERGY STAR qualified buildings in 2008. At last count had 42 ENERGY STAR qualified buildings within it's greater metropolitan area. More Info

Our public transit has also went green with hybrid-electric buses. HERE you can read about the Green Grand Rapids initiative.

The City of Grand Rapids, MI has also reached its goal of having a 20 percent renewable energy supply - Read More

The City of Grand Rapids is among the first municipalities in the United States to begin using a new trash can liner made with 70 percent post-consumer recycled (PCR) material. The PCR content in the Greencore Can Liners™ far exceeds plastics industry goals, reducing the carbon footprint by as much as 40 percent. Link to story

Grand Rapids, MI Renewable Energy - More Info

The City of Grand Rapids Waste Water Treatment Plant (GRWWTP) is one of only 15 platinum level members nationwide of the National Biosolids Partnership in Environmental Management Systems and is currently finalizing the new dewatering system for biosolids. More

Grand Rapids is a Member EPA's Green Power Partnership The Top Rankings-Local Government

There is a lot more to Grand Rapids’ commitment to the environment, but it is time to let others shine as well! They deserve kudos for the work they have done and plan on doing!

As a side note here is a link to a Popular Science article on the 50 greenest cities in the United States. Unfortunately, Grand Rapids did not make this list.

I am proud of this city and I hope more cities will follow suit or at least set a good example for others! Again, I ask our dear readers the question that BA asked: To what extent is your own state addressing alternative energy sources such as wind energy?


Websites where this information was located:
City of Grand Rapids
Sustainable GR
Grand Rapids Public Schools
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
State of Michigan
Integrated Architecture
U.S. Green Building Council – West Michigan Chapter
My Midwest Magazine (Article was written in January of 2008)
U.S. Green Building Council – Build Green Schools
Popular Science

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The Answer is Blowing in the Wind

I happen to live in an area that has a good amount of "green living" potential. Bowling Green has made a financial commitment to reducing its impact on global climate change and is home to Ohio’s first utility-sized wind farm. There are four turbines that are 391 feet tall, which can generate up to 7.2 megawatts of power (enough to supply electricity for some 3,000 residents.) Located about six miles from the city, the turbines can be seen for miles and have become somewhat of a local attraction... I've visited the area and couldn't believe how surreal they seemed. They were very futuristic, without any noise, and with a very slow-moving rotation. Way cool.

At the site, a solar-powered kiosk provides information for visitors including current information on wind speeds and the amount of energy being produced by the turbines... and get this: through the city of Bowling Green Municipal Utilities, residents can request that their power come from green energy! I'm going to have to look into this! The current "power cost adjustment" is $.009 per KWH.







Over the past 15 years, Bowling Green, has gone somewhat greener, installing solar panels on schools, building the wind farm, investing in hydroelectric projects and even generating power off landfill gases.Today, the city of 29,000 residents gets somewhere between 16 percent and 20 percent of its electricity from renewable resources (which could be augmented even further.) Yet, I find it interesting that it does not necessarily stack up to the intiatives of other MidWestern states, nor does it compare to other regions within the US. Take a look at a graph that displays the varying degrees of current installed wind power facilities across the country here.

To what extent is your own state addressing alternative energy sources such as wind energy?




Until next Wednesday! -BA

Monday, August 17, 2009

Mistakes, again. Can I fix this one?


My goal this year: rather than increase the size of my garden , I planned to do more with the existing space. Most of the plants did well -- the tomatoes didn't.
Last year the tomatoes grew much larger than their cages, breaking on the wire and flopping on the ground, where tomatoes (still growing!) would begin to rot. The poor pepper plants behind them were struggling to get any sunshine at all.
This year I moved the peppers in front of the tomatoes and planted the tomatoes around a taller coated trellis so I could tie them up with cloth as needed. Unfortunately, I planted too many and put them too close together. They're fighting for water and nutrition out of a relatively small piece of soil. Even the drainage and the extra calcium I provided (shredded paper and eggshells) couldn't make up for the crowding.
I pulled out three plants that were really struggling and transplanted them into a large planter near my deck. They get more sun here, and despite the limited space, they're doing much, much better now that they don't have to fight the other taller and larger plants. Will they flower and produce tomatoes? I don't know. If I'd left these in the back with the others, they were dying. They would not have survived to make fruit.
Next year we have plans for a smaller separate plot -- just for tomatoes. We'll see what happens then! But for now, I'll wait and see what kind of tomatoes I can enjoy on my BLTs in a few weeks - or hopefully, sooner.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

"Dirt Is Alive and It Eats Poop"

This is probably one of the first funny environmental idioms that I can remember my Dad saying. When my sisters and I would help him in the family garden as kids, he would always interject some type of long-standing knowledge concerning the task at hand. Picking rocks and weeding were never that fulfilling for us, but at least Dad was funny.





Thinking back to his phrase, I realize there was a lot to learn from that. Without the microorganisms in the dirt, things would not decompose, which would mean other things would not grow, which, consequently, means none of us would be living. Dirt, soil, and sand are pretty amazing in that they can be molded into the shapes we or nature desires; and there is nothing like sinking your hands into rich, loose soil, and feeling it slip between your fingers. I have always enjoyed walking around barefoot for this specific reason. I like to feel the ground under my feet and in between my toes.



There are a lot of health benefits and psychological advantages to being more engaged with the earth as well. Scientists are finding that playing in the dirt, with it’s friendly bacteria, can boost the immune system as well as help to increase the brain’s “happiness” chemical, serotonin. The results so far suggest that simply inhaling these bacteria could help elicit a positive state of mind. One is able to get a dose of feeling good just by taking a walk on the beach or by rooting around in a flower pot.





Anyway, it seems almost sad that we might need a book to give us ideas on how to engage kids with nature and the environment, but we welcome I Love Dirt nonetheless. It can be purchased here.




"To forget how to dig the earth and to tend the soil is to forget ourselves." -Mohandas Gandhi










Until next Wednesday, Cheers! -BA


Monday, August 10, 2009

Vegetarian Diet

Summer time is the best for those who are vegetarians - more fresh food for us to eat. For me, I am actually what you would call a Octo-Lacto Vegetarian because I still eat eggs and cheese (although I do not like milk.) I have a garden that consists of many plants, but due to my neighbors tree it has not been getting as much sun as I would have hoped. Therefore, my lettuce and my tomatoes are striving, but the rest are not. Luckily for me though I have my mom and her boyfriends garden that I can raid! Today, I was able to get an abundance of yellow and green beans. Most of which have been blanched and put in the freezer for storage. I love harvesting the veggies and being able to store them. That way I know I will be able to eat some cheaper - organic food during the winter months.

My favorite to store I would have to say is probably zucchini, because I love to make bread and other dishes with them ;) I thought that I would share one of my favorite recipes that I like to make that I experimented with until I got the exact flavor consistency that I love (It's quick and easy) :



2 small zucchini's - diced
2 medium sized tomatoes - diced
1 yellow pepper - diced
1 red pepper - diced
1 green pepper - diced
1/2 red onion - diced
3 sweet basil leaves - finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic - minced
1/2 cup of lite Italian dressing
1/4 cup Feta cheese



1st I just cut all the veggies and throw them in a bowl, then the garlic and Basil. I add mix in the dressing, then throw it in the fridge for an hour, then add the Feta. Then you have a quick and easy dish on the side or for me a meal!!!

I have many salads that I make up in the summer, but this one is my fav! ENJOY!!!

'Tis the season for Zucchini!!

They start looking like this.
Then they get a little bigger, like this.


And finally, they look like this!

Mmm, zucchini.
The first two ended up sliced thin and sauted. Next? Maybe a zucchini bread or cake.
After that? Time to look for a few creative recipes and start filling the freezer!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

GreenSpot-On Wildlife Q & A #6

Welcome to the Sixth Issue of the GreenSpot-On Wildlife Q & A! Here are questions I received from a students from the University of Oregon, C.A. Frost Environmental Science Academy in Grand Rapids, MI and others along with my answers! Please keep the questions coming as I am running out!

Question: Can you come to my school and show us some animals?
Name: Iain Age: 6
Grade: 1 School: C.A. Frost Environmental Science Academy, Grand Rapids, MI

Answer: I would love to, unfortunately, in order for me to be able to come to your school I would have to have an educational permit that would allow me to do that. At this time, I do not hold that type of permit. But, when I do, I would love to come and show your school some animals!!!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~




Question: Could you explain what a person should do if they find a baby animal with no mother or father around?
Name: Chi Age: 32
Location: Grand Rapids, MI

Answer: It depends really on the situation. If the animal is injured then you would want to contact a rehabber or the local DNR. In the case of an uninjured animal that is not an orphan, you would want to leave it so that it's mommy and daddy can continue to care for it. Often with fawn's (as well as other baby animals) people think that they have been abandoned by their parents, when actually the mom and dad are just off getting food.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Question: If i can post a question, what is the most exotic animal you've ever taken care of?
Name: Sam Age: 20
Grade: College School: University of Oregon State


Answer: Being in Michigan, there aren't many animals that are considered to be "exotic" here in the wild. We have taken in foxes and bobcats before. Bobcats are actually more rare for us to see that the foxes.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Most of these animals are pictured in the slideshow on the main page.

If you have children, are a student/adult or wildlife lover and you would like to ask a question about any of these animals, please send an e-mail to JRouse. Include the following information in your e-mail:

Question: (Question for JRouse)
Name: (First Name) Age: (Age)
Grade: (Grade Level of Student) School-City/State: (School Name - Location: City/State)

Up to 3 questions will be answered during each issue of the GreenSpot-On Wildlife Q & A, so it may take time for your question to be answered. Subscribe to GreenSpot-On's feed by Email to get the Issues & other posts straight to your inbox!New to GreenSpot-On: Videos! You can get to them by scrolling down on our main page and click on the videos or you can go to the following page to see our videos: Click here

Sincerely,
JRouse @ GreenSpot-On
Link:
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