Discover Summer: Reading to Combat Learning Loss

If you are a parent of a school aged kid, you’ve probably heard about how students lose around two months of reading, writing, and math skills over their summer break and have lower test scores after the break then before.  Because of this summer learning loss, the first two months of a new school year is often […]

Celebrating the Summer Solstice

Today is the summer solstice. That means that those of us in the northern hemisphere will experience the longest day and the shortest night of the year with more than 15 hours of daylight to use for whatever activities makes us happy. My family is looking forward to a bike ride around the local lake […]

Earth Day Lessons: A Trashion Show

Earlier this year, my daughter participated in her school’s fourth annual Trashion show, where students were invited to create some sort of wearable ensemble made from reclaimed and/or recyclable materials to promote recycling and sustainable lifestyles.  Students who participated in the school’s annual event were not only able to showcase their creative talents, but were […]

Family Time: Leaf It Up To Us

Let’s face it. Youth is wasted on the young. It took me… let’s say 29 years… to fully appreciate the splendor of autumn. My mom used to love to take us on family fall foliage drives or walks, and I just didn’t get it. It’s a bunch of leaves. They’ve turned lots of different colors. […]

Fail, uh, Fall Traditions

We’re all familiar with the traditions that Fall brings, including the end of white shoes, the disappearance of productive work days due to fantasy football, and the first Christmas trees in the mall.   Autumn always makes me think of Aesop’s fable “The Ant and the Grasshopper,” where the lazy grasshopper plays all summer, while […]

Road Trip! Ideas for Trips Your Family Should Take Now

Labor Day snuck up on us, school has started, and the peak travel season is over. What does that mean? To me, it means road trip! As soon as the summer crowds start to dwindle and the temperatures moderate, I’m ready to hit some of the best tourist spots in my local area. Whether your […]

When Fall Hands You Apples, Make Applesauce

An apple a day keeps the doctor away. If that were actually true, we would have a much easier time with universal health care! But we shouldn’t let that untruth diminish the benefits of juicy, delicious apples.   The motivation for this post was a super-cute story called “Apple Day” by Kimberly Long Cockroft in […]

Helping Your Child Build a Volunteering Habit

With all the extra daylight hours, plus the nice weather that comes with summer, this could be a great time for your family to think about getting out into the world and making a difference. Children as young as 3 can pick up trash in the neighborhood, older kids can make sandwiches for a local […]

A Different Kind of Treasure Hunter

My eight-year old daughter is an expert butterfly egg hunter. Our backyard is filled with plants that are hosts—food plants—for the caterpillars that ultimately turn into butterflies and every summer, various butterfly species travel to our tiny urban backyard and lay their eggs on these plants, connecting their babies to the tasty treats that the […]