My son had to stay home from school. Since the reason was a tummy ache he was required to rest for the day and not engage in his regular activities, all of which involve some kind of computerized device. After a long drawn discussion about being unfairly deprived of the activities he had been accustomed to guess what he rediscovered?

It is fun to roast marshmallows in the fireplace and roasted marshmallows taste very yummy. And at the age of nine you can do it all by yourself because you are so grown up and responsible.

So, about the marshmallow roast: soot is kind of ok, if there is not a lot of it, but if you keep the marshmallows in the fire too long they are going to burn and not be good to eat. They are hot and mushy, so you have to be careful as you eat them, and the embers under the ceramic fire logs are just glowing but there is no real combustion going on. The chimney flue is actually round, not square. You'd think it was round only at the top, and square all the way down, but it's not. The back of the fireplace won't burn down because it is made of fire brick. You still can't light the fireplace all by yourself, even if you are nine.

I am not at all surprised at the detailed analysis, we just forgot to touch upon stack effect and the optimal oxygen mix.

Earlier that day we worked on an empirical study about the symmetry of the angles of incidence and reflection by pointing a flashlight at the mirror, and then we went over a few vocabulary definitions for new words. Finally the end of the day came and lifted the computer ban to cheers of joy.

I'm just glad I can still answer his questions. I guess humankind owes five thousand years of progress to the word "why".

Author's Bio: 

Main Areas: Garden Writing; Sustainable Gardening; Homegrown Harvest
Published Books: “Terra Two”; “Generations”; "Letters to Lelia", "Door No. 8", "Fair"; "A Year and A Day"; "The Plant - A Steampunk Story"
Career Focus: Author; Consummate Gardener;
Affiliation: All Year Garden; The Weekly Gardener; Francis Rosenfeld's Blog

I started blogging in 2010, to share the joy of growing all things green and the beauty of the garden through the seasons. Two garden blogs were born this way: and, a periodical that followed it one year later. I wanted to assemble an informal compendium of the things I learned from my grandfather, wonderful books, educational websites, and my own experience, in the hope that other people might find it useful in their own gardening practice.