Summer, Glorious Summer!


Go barefoot, stand on tip toes and rich for the stars! Make mudpies, pick berries, take a nap on a blanket in the shade of a tree. Sandcastles and bubbles are the order of the day. Go outside! There is a world of memories waiting to be made out the back door.

Ask a Mama: Playground Manners

AS0000114FD07 Children, in park and adventure playground

I have a lively 2-year-old and a 4-year-old and my parenting style is pretty relaxed. I’ve noticed when we are at the park most of the parents are hovering close to their kids, helping them to take turns, managing the sharing of sandbox toys, and making sure things are fair between all the kids. I […]

Night of the Shooting Stars: Perseid Meteor Shower


It was a hot night in August. The weekend had drawn to a close on the heels of a long family hike in the Olympic mountains near our island home. I was tired. With boundless boy energy our son declared he was going to sleep out on the trampoline that night with his friend and […]

1 Easy and 1 Hard Way to Travel with Kids


One day many years ago I was listening to NPR when a fascinating piece came on about zebras. Even though their distinctive stripes make them stand out on the African plain individually, collectively their patterns merge, making it difficult for a predator to visually isolate just one and pick it from the herd. Alone they […]



I grew up in Idaho with four sisters and brothers, and a father and mother who wouldn’t take no for an answer. On summer days, after our chores, my siblings and I were herded out the back door. Play, my mother ordered. And we did. We had no choice. We played baseball and had lemonade […]

“The Best Parenting Advice I Can Give You…”


Last summer when my daughter was expecting her third baby she asked me to gather a group of wise and beloved women together for a Blessingway, an alternative to a shower that focuses less on gifts and more on the mother-to-be. Blessingways help the mother prepare emotionally and spiritually for birth with the female energy […]

Music, Stress, Play, Chores, Sleep: 5 Fascinating Studies


Did you know: Pregnant women respond more intensely to music? Your baby can share your stress? Kids with more play autonomy grow into more socially successful adults? One simple word change makes kids more helpful and willing to do chores? Interrupted sleep is as exhausting as no sleep at all? Read on! Here are 5 […]

Back to Basics: 10 Timeless Tools for Outdoor Fun

Hayley Cyrus

Some things never change, including the way kids love to play, generation after generation.  Open ended activities with no rules, the time to do them in, and a few basic tools or ingredients can change a cranky kid into a bright-eyed, breathless child.  This summer  go outside, where there are few NO’s, no physical movement […]

Pushing the “PAUSE” Button


Do you have “the list” at your house? That would be “the list” perhaps on paper, your iPad, your phone, perhaps tucked away in your mind- of all the things you have to do daily; New shoes for the oldest, snacks for the playdate, book reading for the book club, bills, and so on and […]

Alaska! Bugs, Bears, and Boo-Hoo


I spent the last month in Naknek, Alaska, home territory for our family for 24 salmon seasons, and it was the usual crazy, quirky time.  Bears got into the garbage, we had to flush the toilet with a plastic bucket of water, the weather ranged from a chill factor of 35 degrees to a balmy […]

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