I heart scavenger hunts


With summer quickly approaching (just six more weeks to go) and my head swirling with ideas about what we will be doing in the coming months, I thought I’d take a quick moment to share something fun. A strategy I use to help me kill time and get the kids outside.

Now for the most part my kids really do love being outdoors. However, there are moments when they’re either too unmotivated or too annoyed with one another to agree on anything and I’ve gotta get creative if I’m going to get them out the door.

So I’m going to let you in on a little game I like to employ.

Here it is:  Make a “scavenger hunt” for your kids. Nothing fancy here, nothing complicated. Just pull something out of your brain and have them head outside on a secret mission to hunt it down.

It works like this. Step 1: Get a colorful marker and piece of paper. Step 2: Write scavenger hunt on the top. Step 3: Just write down stuff to find. Anything. Step 4: Tell [insert names of children] how important it is to complete this mission. Step 5: Pat yourself on the back because you are awesome.

Report back to me whether it works. And then tell me what you do that works because we need all the parenting hacks we can get around here.

I heart scavenger hunts

Growing a little garden


There’s something awe-inspiring about growing a garden. The possibilities of what can be accomplished! The power to actually feed your family! The wonder of watching seeds turn into sprouts! It just seems like an actual miracle!

I wouldn’t say we’re phenomenal gardeners here, but we’ve planted a garden with various degrees of success for the last four years. Mike did a wonderful job building a raised bed after we moved in and I always do a wonderful job of planting seeds and spending too much money at the adorable local nursery. He’s very lucky he has me.

The tough part, of course, is staying true to the end. The watering and weeding and sticking to it when it’s 105 degrees and mosquitos are swarming. I’m hoping the kids are old enough to produce some quality labor this summer. Strong young eager workers… that’s what I’m raising around here!

Fortunately, the excitement of starting something new each spring is contagious. The kids are already off to a great start. Abe planted and watered our lettuce and kale starts this week. Anna planted some cute purple blooms. It had me wondering if this is a money-worthy chore. We have yet to start our kids on allowances, which is an entirely separate topic. But watering the garden every day? Now that might prompt me to dole out some cash.IMGP5191Do you plant each year? What are your favorite veggies to grow? I used to really pack them in by using the square foot gardening method. But this year we’re taking it a bit slower and easier. The summer may bring some home renovations and I want to be more measured in our yard work. There’s a good chance anything we plant may be neglected or tromped on during a renovation.

But there’s something magical about the first planting and the signs of spring. New growth, green beauty. I love it and the sight of it fills me with happiness… spring is truly here!

Growing a little garden