Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Ranger Rick's Travels: National Parks!

Ranger Rick's Travels: National Parks!
by Stacy Tornio and Ken Keffer
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Muddy Boots
Expected Publish Date: 7-22-16

Ahh...the National Parks, I love them!  Making it to all of the National Parks is on my bucket list, but I haven't gotten a passport.  I've been to several of the parks, and this book would have been mighty handy, especially with kids.  I will definitely have to purchase to keep with us on the next trip and recommend for our library to purchase.  Thank you to NetGalley and Rowman & Littlefield Muddy Boots for an advanced copy in exchange for a fair and honest review.

It is great that all of the United States National Parks are included.  I love the organized approach.  It will help anyone find the highlights and also encourages us to find the hidden treasures, my favorite thing to do.  Each park is broken down into sections for quick reference.  The photographs are truly amazing.  I appreciate that this book also encourages us to celebrate the fact that we have these glorious National Parks, respect them, and to think of all the people who help make them available for us (National Park Service).

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Slice #4 - Observing and Writing while Vacationing

I am enjoying the heck out of Teachers Write on Kate Messner's blog with the many wonderful guest authors, lessons, and musings!  I've been using my summer writer's notebook to keep up with the daily activities and readings, making notes, and trying to hone my observation skills.

As I sit here next to the wonderfully peaceful sound of the West Fork Bitterroot River, (our second cabin in Montana this week),  I observe the sun coming over the mountain slowly adding the sparkle to the riffle on the river, casting the needed light to show off the river's colorful rocks lining the bottom of the riverbed.  For my slice, I've decided to create a list of sentences about the wonder of nature and it's living creatures that I've run across this past week.  (I love lists!)

-Twenty-five dainty geese (3 lines, 3 families?) strutting their necks as they paddle through the water with Mom and Dad seemingly taking up the lead and the tail of their line watching for their safety.

-A robin's nest resting in the eave above me, probably nestling spring eggs awaiting the summer hatch while mom and dad are never far, guarding.

-A herd of bighorn sheep staying close to the mountainside where their babies safely rest, growing and gaining strength to join the journey down the mountain one day soon.

-Beautiful rainbow trout, green with their distinctive pink rainbow striping and black polkadots eagerly swim away from the release of their catch.

-White fish with their sharp angles, who seem to get the bad rap in the hierarchy of caught fish.

-Tiny birds dive-bombing the river, probably catching a freshly hatched fly of one kind or another.

-Lots of deer scattered peacefully munching and meandering their way, to where I don't know.

-The occasional boat with two fly fishermen/women and their guide paddling and casting their way down the river hoping for that bite on the dry fly.

-A large herd of buffalo roaming their way along a railroad track through the meadow, looking too hot for any kind of walk in their coat of fur on a hot summer day.

-A herd of huge, muscular elk crossing the country two lane road through the mountain, their majestic stance showing off their thick furry necks.

-A mountain goat family by the side of road looking a bit confused about the cars stopping to watch them.