- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - Stephen Lyn Bales, editor

Monday, January 25, 2016

Junior Girl Scouts @ Ijams complete Animal Habitat workshop

Recently, the Junior Girl Scouts of the Southern Appalachians completed an Animal Habitat Badge workshop at Ijams. 

Senior naturalist Peg Beute served as the host on a guided trail hike and for the nest building activity inside.  

Suffice it to say, nests are not east to build. So, how do birds do it using only their feet and bills? 

For a list of upcoming Girl Scout events click: GS Events

Two of the finished nests

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Ijams' Big Kid Coloring Club: a low stress way to feel creative

Sarah Brobst invites you to join our Big Kid Coloring Club

“In a 2012 survey sponsored by Adobe,” writes Jordan Gaines Lewis neuroscience Ph.D. student,  “Only one in four respondents reported feeling that they were ‘living up to their creative potential,’ while 52 percent of Americans surveyed described themselves as creative—more than any other nationality.

For most of us, our days are much too busy to feel creative in the evening. That’s where Ijams’ Big Kids Coloring Club can help. Adult coloring—an avocation that's sweeping the nation—is a way to relax, de-stress and gently flex your creative muscle. No big deal, you're just coloring. Whether you use crayons, colored pencils or markers, it's your choice. You can even get reckless and use all three.   

Lewis adds, “Our prefrontal cortex is responsible for coordinating thousands of decisions each day, from which socks we should wear to life-altering relationship and career choices. As an unconscious response to this so-called daily ‘decision fatigue,’ making a series of small, inconsequential decisions (teal or mahogany for this squiggly line?) may give us a refreshing sense of self-control after a long day of big, important ones.”

Ijams’ Big Kid Coloring Club has met three times, once a month. It’s a great way to unwind with other like-minded people. 

Ijams' own Sarah Brobst is the hostess. The next colorful club meeting will be Tuesday evening, February 9.

Watch our Facebook page for more details.  

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Art. The lesson of the day for Junior Girl Scouts @ Ijams

Educator Sammi Stoklosa discusses different painting movements

Last month, Ijams held a Drawing & Painting workshop for local Junior Girl Scouts. AmeriCorps educator and artist, Sammi Stoklosa served as the host.

Ijams will be hosting one workshop a month. For a listing of all local workshops go to: Girl Scouts of the Southern Appalachians.

- Stephen Lyn Bales. Additional photos by Sammi Stoklosa.

 Here's a look at the action...

Friday, January 8, 2016

December Owl-ology 101 class was a hootie hoot

Photo by Jason Dykes

Our second Owl-ology 101 class of the season was held just before the holiday break. It was a quick look at the owl species that can be found in East Tennessee, plus a little information about their life history. 

Local wildlife rehabilitator Lynne McCoy joined us again with owl pellets to dissect, some had wonderfully intact skulls, in addition to the numerous small tibias, fibulas, femurs and vertebrae that rodentia tend to have. She also brought the star-of-the-show Sugar, the rescued albino barred owl that is now under her care. 

The whimsical owl-themed munchies were prepared by our own naturalist/educator Sammi Stoklosa. (Who knew she could make an owl out of crudités.)

Photo by Rex McDaniel
The class proved to be so popular—56 people attended—that we scheduled a third for this Sunday, January 10. But now that one is completely booked, so we scheduled one more for Sunday, February 7 at 2 p.m. It will be the last Owl-ology 101 of the seasonFee: Ijams' members $5, non-members $8. To register call (865) 577-4717, ext. 110. 

In the future look for Woody-ology 101, Hawk-ology 101 and Frog-ology 101.

And don't forget Ijams' Quack-ology 101, our informative and fun look at local duck species scheduled for Sunday, January 31. (I'll bet we serve cheese and quackers.) Register for it at the same number as above.

- Stephen Lyn Bales. Photos by Rex McDaniel, Jason Dykes and moi. 

Here is a look at the fun we had:

Photo by Rex McDaniel

Photo by Rex McDaniel
Photo by Rex McDaniel
Photo by Rex McDaniel
Photo by Rex McDaniel
Photo by Rex McDaniel

Photo by Rex McDaniel
Photo by Rex McDaniel
Photo by Rex McDaniel
Food too pretty to eat, but darn, we ate it anyway. Thanks, Sammi!

And finally, outside for a walk in the woods. Photo by Rex McDaniel

Saturday, January 2, 2016

It's time to let go of that beloved Christmas tree...at Ijams

Breaking up is hard to do!

Yet, sooner or later, you have to part with that festive Christmas tree. It's been the centerpiece of your home all throughout the holidays. Your family has cherished it but you know that beloved member of the family will soon be a fire hazard.

What to do?

Bring it to Ijams (parking lot across from the Quarry Lake) to be recycled into nature. Your tree will thank you and you can always visit.

Here's a WBIR report. Click: Live@5@4