Monday Marin Tender Tracks Feb. 27, 2012

Waxing Crescent Moon
Lake Lagunitas

What a sweet day that started out soft and quiet and ended up alive and unified.  When the children arrived they were more in their own spaces.  They have not played with each other in a couple of weeks, at least not at Tender Tracks.  They got their stuffed animals and we sang a welcoming song and a rain song, in hopes of calling the rain forth some more.  We began our adventure to the Lakes and with the intention to go to the Left, instead of the usual forward and/or to the right.

When we got there we looked for all the Metal Monsters that might be crossing the Concrete River. When it was safe we rushed across to the “forest” with which we traversed bravely through!!! Oh dear, we needed to cross another concrete river and then runnnn all the way over to view how the Waterfalls were doing. Well, they were less then before yet still running and we took in the sight and sounds of this Earthly masterpiece.    Aero then led the way to the Left and I carried on up the side of the hill.  What did we see  but Huge “CONE HATS!” ( orange worker cones) Well, all right, they weren’t really hats but it sure made us all laugh.  Bodhi said they were like funnels and the children put sticks and stones in to see if anything  would come out the hole in the bottom. Only some slight dust so we moved on and played with all the ones that were in front of us and up the hill.  We then found ourselves right in front of the lake where all the logs are in the water. On the logs were over a dozen Cormorants, a Great Blue Heron, some White Egrets and lot’s of Mallard ducks swimming about. We just sat there starring at them all and taking in the sights and sounds.  The Cormorants have such a funny sound it was great to listen to.  Sound Byte: Double-crested Cormorant, National Park Service Aero really wanted to pick the Cattail down but we can not at the Lakes, only at Peggy and Johns.  Purnat said, “let’s go there!!! ” Next time we get together we shall I think.
After spending some beautiful, soaking in our world, time, we headed on up the trail in search of Frogs that I have heard Bodhi speak of.  We didn’t hear frogs but we heard a lot of Woodpeckers so we went to take a glimpse  of these marvels.  What we saw were small Woodpeckers chasing away Crows!!! Purnat was REALLY intrigued with this aerial amusement yet Bodhi and Aero were far more interested in going closer to the Lake where Cattails were.  We sat down near them which had a bench and they all wanted to eat and  hear a story. We also were able to view the Woodpecker/Crow world from here.  After story, after food, after birds in flight and chasing, Bodhi just hid, Aero just hid,and…. where did they go???   Purnat just laughed!  ( well, they really were in plain sight under the bench but you know, it’s all about the excitement).  I went up the hill behind a tree and slowly, slowly creeped down, creeped down, creeped down until SURPRISE!!!!! AHHHH and OHHHH and laughing went on.  We then packed up and continued down the trail.  Throughout the day we just kept moving along, stopping, finding treasures, exploring and then moving on.

Our next stop was inside a bunch of bushes next to the Lake.  Bodhi led us here and was so excited about where he was.  Purnat thought we were in a very wonderful hut type of place and Aero was happy sitting next to the water.   Bodhi had some paper with him and he pulled it out to draw with and shared with Aero.  While they were doing that Purnat and I were up above and Purnat was singing many, many nature songs that he was making up right there. The hard part was that he wanted me to sing them after he sung them but alas, they were REALLY long and I was not able to do it!  We then came down to Bodhi and Aero and Bodhi so graciously had everyone take turns in order to use his pen so we could draw our own pictures.  I found some sticks that worked really well for a pen as well and showed them what I drew with that.

When we moved on from here we found some incredible sand that was so soft to touch and made “dust babies” out of it.  We then found these great  Mushrooms that Bodhi called Pancake mushrooms. They were the same color and shape. Underneath they did not have gills but were spongy.  Aero loved these and when they got broken open they looked so beautiful inside. I copied below something from the internet, this is what the underside looked like.  I thought you might like the info too!

Species With Pores


Another structure used for spore dispersal instead of a gill is known as a pore. Mushroom pores appear as small holes on the underside of the cap.

identify mushrooms - poresThese holes are actually the ends of a series of tubes within the mushroom cap. Spores are produced on the sides of these tubes and eventually they are released where they fall down the tube, out the pore, and into the air. Wind, animals, and insects will further carry them from there.

When trying to identify mushrooms, be sure to note the pore surface. Traits such as color, pore size, and pore pattern may help indicate the species. A key or guidebook will help you narrow it down, although remember that certain features may change as a mushroom ages. (Don’t worry though, gills will never change into pores!)

Two common groups of mushrooms with pores are boletes (the Boletus genus) and polypores. Some quick characteristics of each:

  • Boletes are mycorrhizal, meaning they form symbiotic relationships with the roots of trees. Thus they are mainly found growing on the ground near trees, usually in the summer.
  • Most boletes have a stalk, an umbrella-shaped top, and disperse spores through the small pores underneath the cap. This pore-laden area beneath the cap is often quite spongy.
  • Some boletes, such as the porcini mushroom (Boletus edulis), are considered choice edibles. Others may produce gastric distress, particularly certain red-pored boletes. Don’t assume any bolete that you find is edible! Take the time to make a positive identification.
  • Unlike boletes, polypores almost always grow on wood and never on the ground. They’re found on rotting trees, stumps, and logs.
  • Polypores are normally shaped like shelves, hence the term “bracket fungi”. They don’t have caps or a distinct stem.
  • Polypores contain no poisonous species, making them a good group to examine when learning to identify mushrooms. Some are also known to have medicinal value. Examples of these would be the reishi mushroom(Ganoderma lucidum) and the turkey tail (Trametes versicolor)

Towards the end of our time before we had to turn back around we found a little pool of water and a little hole in the earth.  There was great fun throwing different sized rocks, pebbles and dirt in the water and watch what happend and what sound each different piece made.  Bodhi wanted to fill up the hole, Purnat kept a stick inside and Aero just played with it all.   When we had to go back we decided not to take the EXACT way back because we went so much off trail our first time around but we found a lot of the same things and enjoyed them just as much.  Oh and we were tracking a lot of tracks and started the day with looking at the new track pictures up in the bus and guessing what they were.

The cones they thought, on the way back, were so fun to knock over and then they tried their best at crawling across a gate.
In the bus on the way home I told two stories which were about what to do when you have big loud sounds that want to come out and are not so very welcome in places like, the bus!

When we got back they did their most enjoyable hiding from you parents.  They think this is soooooo fun!!!


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