Welcome back to our Picnic Parade! I am excited to introduce Stacy Slone to you today. She traditionally blogs at Joie de Vivre, talking about the joy of living, but we are blessed to have her guest posting with us here today. She has a fantastic picnic idea for you. Enjoy!…
The Burgess Bird Book–Welcome Spring!
Here in Texas, spring came early but the chill is still staying around a bit. We have had gorgeous weather these past few days, so I have spent the better part of them outside – glory! Spring is my favorite season, as I hear more birds chattering and watch our dogwood trees come back to life. I take great joy in walking through our back yard in the morning with my coffee, as spring comes forth, checking out the bulbs and dogwoods for blooms; watching for new life from our perennials. I’m reminded of the scripture in Psalms.
The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they reveal knowledge. His Creation of living things declares HIS glory without words! Psalms 19:1-2 (NIV)
I’m delighted to share with you one of my favorite authors, Thornton Burgess, and his book, The Burgess Bird Book for Children. I fell in love with Burgess’s writing when I began homeschooling my oldest. This book was on his year 1 list. The good news was, he loved it, too! So did boy #2!
So, not knowing much about Burgess, I thought I’d see if he had other books – and he did! So my youngest son and I enjoyed Mother West Wind’s Children in his preschool days. My acquisition last year was two vintage books of his, The Burgess Flower Book for Children (which I’m currently reading) and The Burgess Seashore Book for Children,which we will be dabbling in again this year as we head to the beach in August. You could definitely say I’m a fan of his! The stories in the bird book have Peter Rabbit and Jenny Wren as the main characters. Peter learns from Jenny who is who in the air in North America, including their nesting habits, appearance, their relationship to other birds, and diets. These stories bring to life the life of birds! It is what spurred my boys and myself to become avid birdwatchers for the past five years and each year we learn a new bird or two, or their call. It’s been so fun!
So, on with the picnic! A great place to watch birds could be as close as your front or backyard, or nearest local park or lake. Take your pick! Gather a blanket,add some food, a book or MP3 player, maybe some binoculars, a bird identifying book – and let’s go!
For lunch I would go with cookie cutter sandwiches filled with your favorite filling, petite carrot sticks (reminds me of Peter’s favorite food!) with Laughing Cow Cheese, grapes (frozen the night before if you like). I would include a nice treat of punch or lemonade. Here, here, and here are some great cookie cutter options for sandwiches or cookies fromAmazon. I just had to include the Blue Jay – he is one of our favorites around here!
There are forty five stories in this book to choose from! Chapter’s 3-32 are for early spring. If you’d like to order the book,you can do that. But they are also in the public domain. You can find all the chapter links here.
Ahem….we’re not crafty here. However, I could see younger children enjoying this precious craft of three blue birds in a nest! There are also paper birds that are delightful and I plan to make a few of these! What we have done is make a bird feeder out of a gallon milk/tea jug or better yet, a gallon vinegar jug. We have a cyclone fence so we cut the handle of ours to fit over the pipe. However,you could also hang it in a tree or shepherd’s hook. I’ve found the gallon vinegar jug to hold up better than the milk/tea jug. I reinforce the bottom opening with duct tape. You can also have your kids decorate it with permanent markers and even special duct tape. Here is a basic video tutorial for creating the bird feeder (scroll to the bottom of the linked page for the video…and instead of a power tool, I use an exacto knife to start a place to cut an opening).
I mentioned this picnic idea to my son’s choir teacher and she joyfully offered some ideas. I have been listening for the past two days to these wonderful folks songs and my boys have loved them and started singing! Pete Seeger’s Birds, Beasts, Bugs and Fishes is absolutely wonderful and is on Amazon Prime. If you don’t have Prime,the first song “Fly Through My Window” would be a great song to go along with your picnic.
I hope you enjoy your picnic!
Stacy Stone is a wife to a great fisherman and mom to two fun and active boys! She is a Jesus-Lover and looks for Him in all His Creation. She enjoys sweet tea, reading, writing, music, and exploring nature. You can find her sometimes blogging at Joie de Vivre and on Twitter.
Are you a nature lover? What activities help you connect with nature?
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