Tag Archives: geocaching

Buford Massacre of 1780


Today, as my last little bit of school, Emily and I went out geocaching. We didn’t find any caches, but we did stumble upon the Buford Massacre of 1780 Memorial, which neither of us had even heard of before. Apparently, it was a big battle with 350 American soldiers against an unknown amount of British troops. It’s said that the American soldiers surrendered, but were attacked anyway. The information said: 113 patriots died, 150 were wounded (but most died due to their injuries), and 53 were captured. Only a few escaped on horseback.

Also on the site was a small grave surrounded by rocks with a small tombstone. From what we could tell, it belonged to someone called Little A.F. Plyler. He/She only lived from 1891 to 189?. We couldn’t make out the last digit. We also weren’t sure why that grave was there.

There was also a Buford Battleground Memorial just a few feet away. That was all we saw, but it was really cool to find something like that without even trying.


The Massacre Memorial

The Massacre Memorial

The Buford Battle Memorial

The Buford Battle Memorial

A.F. Plyler's grave

A.F. Plyler’s grave



A Park Kind of Afternoon


It was a beautiful afternoon here, so we decided to go check out a new park.  We haven’t done much park exploring since we moved, so we figured the time had come. 🙂  The park we “discovered” is 100% fabulous, and I’m sure we’ll be returning frequently. 😀  Today was all about hopscotch, geocaching, hiking, exploring, and poking stuff.  Future  visits will include pedal boats, beach time, and mini-golf…woohoo!!!


Playing a little hopscotch.


A nifty bridge on one of the hiking trails.


Playing with the gunk at the edge of the water. 🙂


Fun with the swings!


Hanging out on the dock.


It’s pretty cool that the park gives you a trash bag when you enter. It’s not very cool that this is how much trash we picked up while meandering about.

A Personal Narrative Sample from Grace


We actually struggled to get this personal narrative sample completed.  Grace didn’t seem to be able to leave the fiction behind and write about something that happened to her.  Her first attempt was completely fictional, so we ditched that one right away.  Her second attempt was about her first day of homeschool, but it was filled with things that didn’t actually happen, so we threw that one away, too.  After having a chat about personal narratives (something that, in theory, she had no trouble understanding), Grace decided to write about the very scary time she was chased by a dog.  Isn’t it strange that someone who writes so well would struggle so much with one little sample about herself?

Anyway, I share all of this so you know that our writing samples aren’t always great on the first try.  In fact, they rarely are.  Grace proofreads her work and makes corrections.  I proofread her work for grammar and spelling, and she makes corrections.  Sometimes, we still find corrections that need to be made after a sample hits the blog.  Sometimes entire essays get thrown to the wayside.

I’m also oh-so-grateful that homeschool allows us the time to deal with the grimy, gross bits of writing.  I don’t feel like she’d have the opportunity to trash things, re-write things multiple times, and spend days developing characters and plots in other schooling situations.  Yay for homeschool! 🙂

Okay, without further ado, Grace’s personal narrative:

I pushed away a low hanging branch and inspected the tree’s base.  Pulling away the dead leaves, I dug around its base for small boxes or containers.  I sighed.

“Any luck?” I called. Emily looked up from the bush she had been prodding.  She shook her head. I got back on my knees.  “Why,” I whispered. “Do geocaches have to be so well hidden?” I looked around.  At least the area was pretty.  A small fountain bubbled in the center of a garden, filled with violets and lilies.

Suddenly, just as I had leaned down to search some more, Emily let out a loud, triumphant ha-ha! I jerked my head up, whacking it   against a low hanging branch.  Running my fingers over the not, I walked over to Emily.

“What was that for?” I asked. Emily smiled.

“I found it!” she said, holding up a small grey lunch box. I smiled.

“Great! Now all we need to do is sign in.” Emily pulled out a pen and started writing. When she was finished, she stuck the box in a nearby tree.  We turned and followed the worn path back to the parking lot of the church. I could see the car, so I decided to run to it. As soon as I got within twenty feet of it, a huge black dog emerged from the trees.

He stopped, and I got the feeling he either wanted to play or to have a snack, so I did the logical, calm thing: I ran for my life.  But there was a small flaw in my plan: the dog was faster than me. Way faster. Soon I could hear him panting beside me. Fear bubbled in my chest. My legs burned, but I forced them to go faster. I saw Emily waving her arms and shouting. Whatever she was saying, it slowed the dog down.  His panting grew faint. I slowed, and started panting myself.

Emily grabbed my hand. I heard a snap from behind me and a short man pushed his way through the trees.  He called out, and after a few seconds, the dog came to him.  Emily’s eyes hardened. Oh no. She marched up to the man.

“Excuse me, but your dog just chased her halfway across the parking lot? Why was he not on a leash?” she snapped.  The man stared.

‘We were just taking a walk,” he said tonelessly.  I glared. Even if you’re ‘just taking a walk,’ your dog needs to be on a leash!

Emily rushed over to the car and opened my door for me. I sat down without a word.  Emily started the car and pulled out her phone. Please not 911, please not 911, please not 911, I thought.

“Animal control, how may I help you?” a muffled voice said. I sighed. Better.

“Hi, my stepdaughter was just chased by three large black dogs. The dogs had and owner, but he had practically no control. What? Ok, his license number was…” I stopped listening and leaned against my door.  I didn’t even notice the other two dogs. Sighing, I closed my eyes, and for the first time, did not feel very fond of dogs.


Wildlife Detective Science Class


Today was just another average day…well, if you don’t include our awesome hike and my scatastic science class. ;P

Yes, you read correctly, I wrote scatastic.  That means I spent an hour and a half poking coyote dung with a stick.   I love science!  Seriously though, we did learn how to track animals, and we did actually find some trails.  First we set out some bait.  We sat a tray on the ground and poured a trail of honey on it leading to a bowl.  In the bowl are a few lumps of seedless raisins doused in honey.  We sprinkled powdered sugar over the tray (so we could see the animal tracks) and started out on a class hike.

After a while, we found some horse scat, but we were on a horse trail, so it wasn’t really unexpected.  We did find the tracks of a very exotic animal, an animal that only lives in very faraway places.  Tire tracks.

A short while later, we stopped in a small clearing to play a game.  It was called, “Track, Hide, and Seek.”  We were split into pairs and given a bag full of “tracks:” pinto beans, some sort of green beans, white rice, or powdered sugar.  I got the powdered sugar.

My partner was the first one to hide, and he left a false trail, leading in the opposite direction of where he was hiding.  Lucky for me, his blue hat really stood out against the tall golden grass he was hiding in.

After that, it was my turn to hide, and I left a trail leading in a big circle.  I ran behind a small bush (this is about where I spilled powdered sugar all over my pants and shoes) and hid, waiting to be found.

The guy looking for me did follow the trail for a while, practically walking in a big circle.  I actually stood up watching him, and it still took him a while to look up from the false trail he was following. J

That’s about when we found the coyote paw-print.  We followed the prints until we walked up to a big pile of coyote scat.  We poked it with a stick for what seemed like forever, and then went on our way.

We were only walking about a half-mile trail, (with quite a few breaks) so I was feeling good while walking.  I started moving at a slightly faster pace and counted the bird chirps I heard.  I was really energetic when I turned around, so the sight of half the class slugging far behind was surprising.  Everybody looked as if they had been running the whole trip, and like we didn’t take so many breaks.

Before we left the trail, we checked the bait we had set up.  We saw some squirrel tracks and a dent in the tray, but that was all.

As we walked up to the shelter, everybody (except me) ran up to the nearest bench and collapsed on it.  I said hello to Emily and we went on our own hike.

We stopped to get a geocache (which we failed to do) and I spent some time sitting on a really big rock.  After we got off the rock, we hiked a little bit faster, but we did find the second geocache we went after.  We talked, but I can’t remember half of it.  If I remembered everything Emily and I talked about, my brain would explode. 😉

We found some scat and talked some more.  It was really fun.  Happy hiking/geocaching/poking things with sticks!