Balance

Okay, I’ll say it: When it comes to teaching my kids to ride a bike, I am a better parent than you are. You might have nailed down nutritious snack habits, taught your kids how to save their allowance, and had them prepped for the SATs by the time they were in first grade. But…

Living in the Trees

This post will overlap a small bit with my post on simplicity. If you haven’t read that one, you might give it a read. ******* These days it would be easy to think kids have changed. That all they want is video games and microwave food. Why aren’t they like we were as kids? Well,…

Road Map to the Stars

Seeing stars is no longer as easy as it once was. Light pollution is a pervasive bummer. It’s tragic to consider that my generation is likely the first in all of human history to grow up without a constant nighttime backdrop of stars. I was in my teens before I saw the Milky Way.(See the…

On the Hook with a Book Named Kook

I recently read a book about surfing by Peter Heller. Except that it wasn’t just about surfing. In fact, for me it was hardly about that sport at all. What it was about (that concerns us here) is love. Love of the ocean. Love of significant others. And love of surfing. And how these three…

The Slingshot: Taking Aim Outdoors

In preparing your children for the coming apocalypse, you must realize that your month-long stores of canned goods will eventually run out. At some point they will need to emerge from the bomb shelter and hunt radioactive chipmunks if they hope to survive. To that end, they will need some proficiency with the making and…

Beavers!

I’d like to think at this point in my life, that I’m some sort of amateur naturalist. After all, I started reading Ranger Rick magazine when I was about 7 years old, and have been aware of animals ever since. Add to that all the hours I’ve spent watching deer with my mother (“Be QUIET!!…

Rainy Day Swimmin’, Whether 12 or 35.

As we continue through March, you can sort of rest assured that theres a few rainy days ahead. ‘Cat-in-the-hat’ days. So whats an outdoors-oriented parent to do on a day like that? Well, one could make a case for being outdoors in all weathers with your kids (as I will, later). Or a person could…

Snow Day Montage

Winter is the time for montages. Time outside can be difficult, so our memories are summarized in mental snapshots. Flick. Flick. Flick. We tick through the best parts, ignoring the snow that sneaked under our gloves and froze our wrists. Wet socks? Frozen nose and ears? No way! We made a snowman. We made snow…

Ready to Try Geocaching?

We’re not experts at geocaching, so we asked Val Joiner if she would give us an intro to the sport. She obliged, and we are ever so glad she did. Val is a former geologist who now spends her time as a wandering homeschooling mom. She believes travel and exploring nature are vital to kids…

Five Reasons For Hope In 2012

Generally, I have contempt for these “end of the year” countdown posts. But in the spirit of the “season,” I’m going to set that aside and think positive. Lots of people have had a stinky 2011. Here are five reasons why 2012 is going to be better… 5. The rise of public bicycles. First, it…