On Saturday, July 15th, 2017, a powerful monsoon powered microburst hit downtown Phoenix, and severely damaged Phoenix’s Burton Barr library, resulting in an indefinite closure while repairs are underway. The MACH1 maker space took much of the damage, and will be closed for longer, possibly for months as repairs to the building and replenishing of hundreds of thousands of dollars in STEM and high tech maker space supplies are assessed and replaced. This has left the science community reeling, as parents and kids all around the valley were left with canceling of summer STEM programming (including our own Atomic Adventures!) and left without their home ofRead More →

Kat and I LOVE the Arizona Science Center. We’ve been members for over three years, and for much of that time, we’ve been making weekly trips to what we affectionately call our second home. Their planetarium shows are wonderful, the exhibits are spectacular (check out their physics room and Forces of Nature!) and the staff is friendly, fun, and exceptional at bringing the excitement of science to kids of all ages! What makes the science center extra special for us, is that they offer incredible science classes and labs for homeschooling families here in the Phoenix area!Read More →

“Rocks are records of events that took place at the time they formed. They are books. They have a different vocabulary, a different alphabet, but you learn how to read them.” -John McPhee A few weeks ago, Kat and I decided that we would take on a new project and learn about the geology of Arizona. We would learn about how the land was formed, the various changes it has gone through over the billions of years since its formation, and then visit various sites in the valley to look for geological evidence in the rocks. As we began planning the first part of ourRead More →

Last week I was reading “Surely, You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman!“, a wonderful autobiography of the curious and hilarious Nobel winning physicist Richard Feynman. I was struck by one of his curiosity kicks: he wanted to see how well the human nose could smell. Were our smelling powers stunted in comparison to those of other animals? Could we take a book off the bookshelf and be able to tell if someone has read it simply by smelling it? Could we tell if someone has merely held it in their hands? He found the answer to be YES! I however, was not so sure. Feynman, after all,Read More →

October is the month for all things related to Halloween and Kat and I have begun decorating our house in full festive fashion! While we were cutting out bat silhouettes to line our spooky hallway, we began talking about the animals themselves. We knew the basics: they are mammals, they fly, and they use sonar to find their food. Beyond that, we didn’t really know much about them. So, for the next two weeks, we learned a lot about bats, played batty games, and even went to a local bat colony! Bats are really quite fascinating. We’ve all heard the phrase “blind as a bat”,Read More →

“We embarked on our journey to the stars with a question first framed in the childhood of our species and in each generation asked anew with undiminished wonder: What are the stars?”  ~Carl Sagan I love to learn about space and space exploration. When I was a little girl, I would wake up early before school to watch the space shuttle launch, and dream about one day going to Space Camp. I loved going to the planetarium, and I would collect star books and try to find the constellations in the night sky. As my own daughter has grown up, we have begun to shareRead More →

As spring peaks and summer closes in on the Phoenix valley, Kat and I are taking stock of the flowers we have in our garden before the heat causes them to wither away. Spending time with our flowers and vegetables is a wonderful way to start our day. In fact, we’re still seeing new flowers on our tomato plants, and we’re watching some of our herbs flower as well (hopefully we’ll be able to collect some seeds this year!). As we spend as much time outside as possible before the heat sets in, Kat and I have had many discussions about our garden, how theRead More →

We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children. ~Native American Proverb  Kat and I love nature projects. Whether we’re gardening, composting, collecting insects, or watching birds, we love to sit and enjoy the wonderful diversity that our planet has to offer. For this reason, Earth Day is one of our favorite holidays. Last summer, we made some really great “Do Not Litter” signs and hung them up in our neighborhood. Not only was this a fun and creative project, but it actually got our community involved in taking care of our neighborhood! The manager of our local teachingRead More →

Last year, Kat and I enjoyed the fruits and vegetables that came from our first garden in our new home. We went through the trials and errors of proper watering schedules, organic pest control, and soil acidity. Some of our plants were very fruitful while others were not, and we ate and learned our way through our first big garden project. This year, I was struck by inspiration while reading a bedtime story to Kat. We had been reading “The Secret Garden” by Francis Hodgson Burnett, and Kat loved the idea of a special place the children could call their own while they played outsideRead More →

When Kat was four years old, I took her on a scavenger hunt for shapes. We took the bus to the light rail station, and then took the light rail to downtown Phoenix to embark on our quest. We found shapes in the most surprising places! It was an exciting way to explore a familiar concept of shapes with my preschooler, and have a different sort of adventure with her.Read More →