Friday, May 27, 2011

Our Rock & Mineral Collection

I am, by nature, quite a collector. I like to catalog my collections, and keep them for posterity. Rock and minerals were probably my first collection. I had a cardboard box with a nice flip open lid that was my nature collection as a child- it was very dear to me. I would add feathers, seashells, rocks, whatever little piece of nature I came upon that caught my eye. I would hope every young child has a box or drawer for their nature finds- both of my children have had one since they were very young. Bringing home a special rock, shell, leaf or feather from a family vacation or just a walk in the park is a great way to build memories.

This is a rock with a fossil in the shape of the letter A (for April), that I found on a walk with my friend as a young girl. I was so excited to find this!!

My nature collection took on more of a rock and mineral theme after I took my first class trip to our local science museum OMSI (Oregon Museum of Science and Industry). I was in love with OMSI from my first visit (I love science & nature), it was a wonderful trip. I was able to bring a small amount of money, to bring home a souvenir from the science gift shop. The shop was amazing, in particular, one wall of the shop was filled with individually packed rock and mineral specimens, at very reasonable prices. So that is what I chose to bring home. I believe my first rock was a piece of pink talc- a soft pink rock! Perfect. From then on, I would work very hard to earn school trips to OMSI, which were used as incentives for good academics/ attendance. I also would request of my Grandma Irene, every year when she would take me somewhere special for my birthday, that it would be to OMSI. Every trip I would bring home another rock or two.

Here are a few still in their packages from OMSI when I was a child.

Now as a family, we continue to build our rock collection, always on the lookout for that special new rock. Ebay has also been a source for special rocks & minerals to add to our home. They make wonderful gifts as well. I tuck our rocks into nooks in the book cases, we have a shelf of them in our office (see the top picture) which is nice to look at as a break from computer screens & paper clutter. The children have them in little spots throughout their rooms.

One wonderful tip for organizing a collection of rocks is a tool box with individual sections. Here is how I keep mine.

Bigger rocks find their way out to the garden as well. When we moved to this house, the backyard was not landscaped, and was a big pile of very rocky dirt. We had a good time finding all sorts of stones that we worked into our garden. I am very excited about a new rock addition to our garden- my husband is working with a friend to help them move, and they never finished a pond project, so we were gifted with a wonderful bunch of landscaping stones- can't wait to plan a project for them.

Some collected rocks out in our garden.

Rocks and minerals are such a beautiful part of nature. I am always amazed at the detail God puts into every one. I hope I have inspired everyone to start up a collection of their own- or pull out one you already have to share with the kids. I will leave you with some wonderful rock themed bible verses.

The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer, my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge. Psalm 18:2a

Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord, the Lord, is the Rock eternal.
Isaiah 26:4

Of course we mustn't forget the wonderful story of the Wise man building his house upon the rock in Matthew 7:24-28

Have a wonderful day!!

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