Category Archives: Everglades

Jambalaya and Alligator Bread

We finished our week in the Everglades with a “kid friendly” meal, which isn’t my typical style (not that I don’t enjoy making “kid” foods, but I’d rather make a legitimate delicious dinner and “kid friendly” and delicious don’t necessarily go hand in hand, in my opinion), but it was super fun and enjoyed by all.

So, after a week learning about the difference between a swamp (wooded trees) and a marsh (grassy plants), watching graceful manatees dive down deep, and reading about the many plants and animals that make up what is known as the Everglades, we sat down to a meal representative of the area we studied.   Even though we already spent a week in Florida, we chose to dine that week like the astronauts.  This week, we ate like the Floridians do.

Everglades Dinner

Alligator Bread

Okay, maybe they don’t eat alligator bread, but that was our “kid friendly” part and a perfect conclusion to our week.  Don’t let this bread fool you into thinking it’s a crocodile, for, as we learned, crocodiles sport a long skinny snout, verses the wider front that graces the gator.  The kids LOVED this, of course and each chose a body part to enjoy.

Florida Jambalaya

Okay so this may not have been the most kid friendly as it was a teeny bit too spicey and I may have lost a little control with the cayenne pepper, but at least we could all breathe well for a few days.

Key Lime Pie

Just a tip, don’t send your spouse or significant other to a gourmet grocery store to buy key limes, turns out they are much more likely to be found at the typical run-of-the-mill store.  This key lime pie was simply delicious and will be stored away in my files of family favorites for sure!

Thank you Florida and thank you Jesus for the beautiful Everglades you made for us to enjoy.  Enjoy it we did!

My Bucket List

Okay, so let’s be honest, I haven’t really sat down and written a “bucket list”, but if I did swimming with manatees would be on it.  As a sixteen-year-old I had the amazing opportunity to swim with dolphins in Hawaii and again as an adult in Cancun (which was actually a bit better since it wasn’t as regulated and we even got to have the dolphins push us along by our toes as we stood in the water).

Having had such wonderful experiences, I am even more curious to discover what it would be like to swim with the massive, chubby, short-legged creatures known as manatees.

This week as we have been learning about the Everglades, we couldn’t resist viewing a little footage of what that experience would be like.


Entering the Everglades

We have left the depths of the canyon grand into the swamps and marshes of the Floridian Everglades, where crocodiles and alligators are identified by the widths of their snouts and mosquitoes are the most bloodthirsty predators.

This week our focus is on creative writing/art. We started with a little geography reminder as we were in Florida not long ago for our week in Cape Canaveral (which was actually more of a week in space) learned some new spelling words, hit the library for a stash of reading materials, then began our small “project”.

I had Tallinn design some sort of swamp creature, which ended up being an animal with the body of an alligator, legs of a manatee, head of a turtle and teeth of a crocodile.  Sadly, somewhere in the process of being nine months pregnant and having a baby, that beautiful drawing has been lost into the abyss of misplaced art projects.  It never was brushed with the intended paint colors and was lost naked, with only an outline of number 2 pencil. 

After he designed this swamp creature I had him write a little (very little in fact) story about his animal.  If you have a seven-year-old son, you might understand how difficult this type of task can be for an energetic boy. Writing isn’t quite as fun as science and math and just plain being outside, but it was a first step and we will do many more, just not for a while :).

Here is his simple story, using a few spelling words for extra motivation, copied exactly as he typed it on the computer.

Once there was a monster who was big bad and scary.  monster who lived in a marsh.  His mouth was as big as a garbage truck and it eats  people.he was a alligator mana tee turtle and a dolphin the dolphin was eaten by the alligator there were oranges by the swamp it was going southern there were palmtrees and the weather was                  very very very veryhothothothothot.


Everglades Spelling List

1. oranges

2. marsh

3. swamp

4. weather

5. palm

6. manatee

7. dolphin

8. southern

Bonus: alligator