Great Ideas

An Easy and A 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 […]

The Rich World of Kinship: 10 Ways to Grow Human Connection

Look at the sweet faces of children in front of a screen—vacant-eyed, passive, disengaged. Okay, so the truth is we need that quiet passivity at times to get things done–to draw a breath or flip a pancake, or return an email, but there are greater things waiting to happen. Turn off the technology. It can […]

Fall Down 7 Times Stand Up 8: Raising Resilient Kids

 Albert Einstein once said I am not necessarily smarter, I just stick with the problem longer than anyone else.  It can be difficult to watch your child muddle through a problem on her own, particularly when we, as the adult, have the know-how and resources to solve it quickly.  We believe our help will ease […]

Back to Basics: 10 Timeless Tools for Outdoor Fun

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 […]

A Flower for Mama: An Easy Mother’s Day Card

Nothing says Happy Mother’s Day more than fresh flowers! And it’s not to early to create these beauties for next weekend.  This project takes minutes to make and is a personalized, one-of-a-kind offering that will warm the heart of any Mama. Take a photo of your child with her arm outstretched in a fist. Print […]

Grow Potatoes in a Tire

  Never gardened before? Potatoes were the first thing we ever planted. My then three year old son took a few from our cupboard and simply stuck them in the ground without telling anyone. They grew beautifully into a bumper crop of potatoes in the fall. Potatoes are one of the easiest and most satisfying […]

This Mama’s Take on Stranger Danger

We were on our way to a school celebration. The kids were excited even if they had to dress up and brush their hair and wear shoes instead of their customary rubber boots. It was the culmination of a 6-month study on the culture of Mexico and there was going to be a piñata! Tacos! […]

“Can I Play at the Dirt Pile House?”

  My friend Kate gazed out at the homes in her new neighborhood as her husband drove. Each yard was neat and perfectly landscaped, complete with swept walkways and expensive playground equipment, a kid’s heaven, she mused. Clean cars were parked in the driveways. Behind those big front doors Kate imagined tidy rooms and families […]

It’s the Process Not the Product

By Nancy Blakey One of my favorite Calvin & Hobbes cartoons shows Calvin shoveling dirt. Hobbes the tiger asks him why he is digging a hole. “I’m looking for buried treasure!” Calvin announces. “What have you found?” Hobbes asks. “A few dirty rocks, a weird root, and some disgusting grubs. There’s treasure everywhere!” Calvin announces […]

Camping with Kids: Make Your Reservations Now!

There is nothing like the great outdoors to make memories!  Car camping is easy and now is the time to make reservations for this summer.  Here are Mama Paul’s best camping places in Western Washington.  There are places all over the United States that may take a little research to find, but it is worth […]

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