ornithology (ornəˈthäləjē)

The bird feeder is unusually quiet. We often see chirping birds during the day.

Ever since my dad placed a bird feeder outside of our dining room window, we have seen many different songbirds.  Every evening during dinner, we are entertained by cardinals, Carolina chickadees, titmouses, house finches, bluejays, and several kinds of sparrows. My favorite birds to watch are cardinals because they are so colorful. Ornithology is the study of birds.  It comes from the Greek roots, ornitho- meaning bird and –logy meaning study of. Do any of you have a bird feeder? If you do, what is your favorite bird to watch?

funambulist (fyu̇-ˈnam-byə-list)

A sketch of a funambulist drawn by my dad.

A funambulist is a tightrope walker. Funambulist contains the Latin roots fun– meaning rope and ambul– meaning walk. This word literally means “rope walker!” One of the most famous funambulists is Jean-Francois Gravelet, known as “The Great Blondin”. In 1859, he crossed the Niagara River on an 1100 foot rope. He crossed the river many times, each time doing something more dangerous. He ran and biked across, even in the dark! I think that his most amazing feat was when he rolled a wheelbarrow containing a stove, to the middle of the rope, stopped and cooked an omelet, then lowered the omelet to passengers in a boat below him! I don’t think that I could ever be a funambulist, because I would be too scared and probably end up falling!

Do you know your colors?

This week I decided to do a post on unusual colors. Everybody knows the basic colors (red, blue, etc.), but how about scarlet, cerise, saffron and verdigris? I’ve included pictures to show you what the colors look like. Vote for your favorite in my poll below!