Saving the Delaware

Following up on last month’s article, it looks as if public outcry, pressure, petitioning and action have paid off. The four-state Delaware River Basin Commision cancelled it’s November 21st scheduled vote on Hydraulic Fracturing for natural gas in the Delaware River watershed.

For those of us who love the river and feel the importance of preserving our clean water and land it was great news! Unfortunately, the doors to the gas companies are not yet closed, as each state has the right to make it’s own regulations.

Decisions are still being made in New York and New Jersey. In New York there is a movement to contact Governor Cuomo and urge him to prohibit fracking.

In New Jersey there is a push to encourage state representatives to override Governor Christie’s veto of a bill that the legislature already passed banning fracking.

riding the Delaware

The Delaware River is an integral part of The Nature Place Day Camp’s outdoor programming. If you would like to learn more about the issue in general visit savethedelaware.

Lots and lots

One of the things I like to find on outdoor excursions with both younger and older children is lots/a bunch of/a whole mess of just about anything. I usually mean nature things but other items will do. I get excited about finding lots of something because there are creative possibilities with all of these ‘things’.

We have found mounds of acorns, acres of dandelions, seeds of all kinds, leaves (of course), branches (especially after this last Halloween snow storm), dried mushrooms on the sides of dead logs, shadows, fallen stems, fallen petals, stones, loose bark, clay in the stream, snow, puddles, sawdust, cool litter and more.

many mushrooms

After discovering a whole lot of something, you can plan together with your child the kinds of creations you can make with these treasures. Simply asking “What can we make with all these acorns/twigs/pebbles?” can inspire an outdoor project. Some of our past creations have included:

acorn paths
bark spirals around a tree
stone towers
branch/twig buildings
clay-covered pebbles
a snowball garden

Ed’s Corner

I know that the sun has been setting earlier for the last 3 months or so, but at this time of year it seems to be getting dark by 2pm! Do you feel that too? Am I imagining this, are the shadows tricking me, do the bare trees have anything to do with this?

When I think of our ancestors (the very early ones, not those who came through Ellis Island) I can imagine their fear and trembling as darkness closes in keep reading…