Year of the Manatee

Hey, all!  So here we are, almost through the first week of March.  The good news is I got through Spendthrift February without going over budget.  More or less.  I think…

I did buy a little something for the boys; a purchase necessary to return peace to our home.  Awhile back, I told you how Beau acquired a stuffed manatee in Florida and his brothers were OBSESSED with it.  They each had the opportunity to choose a souvenir, but it soon became painfully apparent that Beau’s choice was just so cuddly and covetable.  Everyone loved Beau’s Manty and it was a source of constant contention.  I thought the novelty would wear off, and all too soon Manty would be forgotten about.  But after THREE MONTHS of breaking up daily Manatee battles???


So I found Ron Jon Surf Shop online and ordered two more “Mantys”.  Or Manty’s?  Manties?  I guess I don’t how to make made up words plural.  How about Martinis?  Now that’s an idea…


Meet Manty-Manty on the right and Manty-Manty-Manty on the left, who is just called Manty for short. Got it?

Trust me, it was money well spent.  Manty, Manty-Manty, and Manty-Manty-Manty have taken over the place.  They are the stuffed animals of the hour.  The IT Toy.  They’re EVERYWHERE.


If you take a picture, expect a Manty to photobomb it. Manty in a popcorn bag?  Like I said, they’re EVERYWHERE.

SO… since the Manty trio is indeed EVERYWHERE, we decided to seize the moment and learn a little about Manatees.  For example, our  National Geographic Animal Encyclopedia informed us that “Sea cows” (you know that’s another name for Manatees, right?) “eat a lot- up to a quarter of their body weight in plant material each day.  The gas produced by their digestive systems makes them very buoyant.”  As you can imagine, the fact that Manatees are gassy makes them an even bigger hit with little boys. @_@

We also downloaded this book from on Kindle for iPad:

Aren’t they just as cute in person???  Umm….

A Manty or two is bound to appear in our art projects as well.  My Mom has been organizing an art class for the boys once a week.  The last project was a crayon resist undersea picture.

manatee unit study, crayon resist

Note Manty on the cruise ship drinking lemonade.  Hey, can you spot Finn’s camouflaged whale?

manatee unit study, crayon resist

This is Beau’s fantasy world where his favorite animals (Manatee and Walrus) meet in the deep sea.

The goal was not to be scientific, okay? 😉  Speaking of goals, the goal when you’re doing a crayon resist is to do lots of bright colors and get a really thick layer of crayon.  Then you go over top of it with water color paint.  We used large sheets of watercolor paper, but in retrospect, smaller sheets would be better.  That way the kids don’t get too tired of coloring before the crayon layer is heavy enough to really resist the paint.  It was still a lot of fun and they turned out great.

Looks like the Manty’s, er… Manatees, aren’t going anywhere anytime soon.  In fact, I caught Finn making Manty graffiti in his Bible study book.  He wrote “2014” with a Manty face in the zero.  How did I know it was a Manty face?  Trust me, I’ve seen a few of them.

manatee unit study

If you’re doing an animal unit study, why not design a logo featuring your animal?  You don’t have to commit to a full year. 😉

You might be wondering if Beau was okay with Finn and Dash getting Manty-Manty and Manty-Manty-Manty, while he got nothing?  The answer is NO, he was NOT okay with that.  Turns out Beau got something too…

manatee unit study

You guessed it. Everybody wants a Tusky. Who knew a walrus could be so cuddly and covetable?

Well, I’ve gotta get going.  But the Manty and Tusky show will be back.  We’re making stick puppets today!  I’ll be sure and show you how they turn out.  Don’t forget to leave a comment and let Finn know if you saw his “camouflaged whale”.  Thanks for stopping by!

Linking Up with Happy and Blessed Home’s Family Fun Friday! Because what’s more fun than a Trio of Sea Cows? Pop on over there for more fun! Thanks for reading. 🙂


P.S.  If you are really coveting Tusky, you can get your own Wild Republic Cuddlekins 15″ Walrus at Amazon.  He is too stinkin’ cute for $11.80, but I’m NOT buying two more!  REALLY.  Not gonna do it.  (BTW, I’m an Amazon affiliate, so thanks if you decide to shop through my links!)


  1. Sherrrill says:

    Fun and educational too; can’t beat that. And everyone is so photogenic! Even the Walrus; who knew? The books are a great addition to the art project. Can’t wait to see the puppet post 🙂

  2. Yes in fact I think I did see the camouflaged whale! Under the shark biting the (manatee?)?

    Great pics, good job guys!


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