My husband, who knows my great desire to get kids outside, showed me an article from Outside magazine, 50 great family adventures. While I applaud their desire to get families out into nature, these over-the-top $20,000 “dream” vacations, are way out of reach for the average American family. So, Jack and I got together and came up with our own 50 Great Family Adventures not far from our own back yard. Most can be done in a day or a weekend. All are located here in the Upper Midwest, which was (in my opinion) sorely underrepresented in the article. True, we don’t have mountains or an ocean coast line, but there are still plenty of learning opportunities and places to make lasting memories here.
We will be posting our suggestions on Jack’s blog site. Which I recently revived. Follow the link.
Jack’s Penguin Slide
My 3-tray, hand-crafted worm bin arrived yesterday (vermiculture, woot woot!) in a box just begging to be upcycled. When I unpacked it this morning, I left the empty box sitting in the middle of the kitchen floor, wondering if Jack was still of an age to be interested in an empty cardboard box. It’s been awhile since we’ve had a box of any significance in the house, and I thought maybe at 10, he had outgrown the obvious attractions. Does the child who snipes zombies online with friends, still have room in his heart for an empty box?
Imagine my joy then, when we came home from breakfast at Denny’s (pancakes, woot woot!) and the child asked “can I make something out of that box?”. After some deliberation, it was agreed that it was the perfect size for a Sarah Dog house, and then we spent a wonderful couple of hours crafting the dog her own bungalow. Now if we could just convince her to go inside it.
For the second year I met my self imposed reading challenge of 36 books. I read 38 books to be exact, although truthfully many of them were children’s books read with Jack. I was trying to get through as many Pulitzer prize winners as I could, but it turns out that they are mostly all the same book, they just change the name and sometimes the gender of the characters. What did I like about my 2012 reading list? Drum roll please…my top 5 favorite books in no particular order were:
1. The Adventures of Kavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon- an unusual Pulitzer prize winner that follows the lives of two Jewish comic book writers during WWII.
2. The Road by Cormac McCarthy-also a Pulitzer book, disturbing to say the least, and not a bad movie either.
3.The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins-an excellent young adult book even if it is widely popular.
4. Last Child in the Woods by Richard Louv- a nonfiction take on why children need nature and why their parents should be more concerned about giving it to them.
And 5. A Cricket In Times Square by George Selden- a sweet and pure children’s classic, made better by a visit to Times Square.