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Parenting Reflections

03 Sep
My National Park Story Is Up…How About Yours?

My National Park Story Is Up…How About Yours?

I stumbled across–by way of a tweet–this great project by the National Parks Conservation Association. You can submit your National Park story to www.myparkstory.org and they have a bunch published on the site. As I read through them, I was really encouraged by how many families have built lasting, beautiful memories by enjoying one of the best investments this country has made. So, of course, I submitted my own story. I could have chosen from many important moments I have experienced with my children in a National Park. In the... Read More
29 Aug
Mt. Tom, Vermont (or the day that the “Precipice Trail” seemed like a great option for kids and baby)

Mt. Tom, Vermont (or the day that the “Precipice Trail” seemed like a great option for kids and baby)

When I went to talk to the Ranger about climbing Mount Tom, he took one look at our merry band of pirates and decided that wide paths and gentle upgrades were the way to go. As he highlighted a route to the summit, he specifically told me to stay away from the Precipice Trail. That’s a real trail, he said. Real narrow and steep. You’re best off sticking to the carriage roads. Like a good mom, I listened to the advice of experts and we climbed the two-plus miles up to the summit, sticking to the wide carriage roads. The trail did... Read More
25 Aug
Camper Wesley: Rookie Stats Have Been Calculated!

Camper Wesley: Rookie Stats Have Been Calculated!

At a mere four months old, our little camper has racked up some serious traveling stats.  Outdoor enthusiasts, let’s play a game…Can you beat Wesley’s numbers? Total states visited: 6 Total National Parks Visited: 3 Total Hikes Completed (or slept through…six of one, etc.): 5 Total Summits Crested: 2 Total Nights Spent Camping: 27 Total Campgrounds: 7 Percentage of life spent in an RV: 20% (okay, 19.5..we rounded up) Hairs pulled out of his brothers’ head: countless * Of course, the year is not over yet. His... Read More
22 Aug
The Art of Hand Holding: Quechee Gorge, Vermont

The Art of Hand Holding: Quechee Gorge, Vermont

Our visit to the Quechee Gorge was one of my favorite moments of our whole Vermont trip. The mile hike down to the bottom of the Gorge was perfect for kids and full of quiet, easy beauty for the adults. * * * Down at the bottom, heaven presented itself in the form of water and rocks. Water and rocks…a magical pairing for our boys right up there with peanut butter and jelly. This is when it got a little tricky. Jeremy and I always push the limits a bit when we travel with the kids.  We want them to be wowed. We want them to have a blast.... Read More
13 Aug
A Rainy Day in Vermont and a Glass Factory: Our Family-Style Anniversary

A Rainy Day in Vermont and a Glass Factory: Our Family-Style Anniversary

It rained from dawn to dusk today on our 13th wedding anniversary, but I’m pretty sure we managed to make it as romantic as possible with my lovely mother and three kids in tow. The Simon Pearce Glass Factory in Quechee is just simply a beautiful place, and even though the price tags on their items are too rich for our blood, the views (and glass factory tour) are free. We got to watch from just a few feet away while the craftsmen created vases and bowls and glass pumpkins. Jeremy seems to have developed a bit of a man-crush, but I am... Read More
06 Aug
Theo’s Philosophy of Travel: Let’s Give It a Chance

Theo’s Philosophy of Travel: Let’s Give It a Chance

On day sixteen of our road trip through North Carolina and Virginia Theo informed me that he wanted to go home.  He was simple and direct. “Daddy, I want to go home.” Max disagreed. “Daddy I want to go to another campin’ ground.” I could have stayed on the road for the rest of the summer, but alas, for a variety of reasons, it really was time to go home.  However, I tried to keep both boys happy. “Well guys, we are going home tomorrow, but we are going to go camping again this summer!”  Max smiled.... Read More
30 Jul
Max the Lepidopterist and Theo the Fantasist

Max the Lepidopterist and Theo the Fantasist

On our way from Asheville to the Shenandoah National Park, we broke for lunch at your typical roadside fast food joint. We unloaded the kids and began to walk into the restaurant when Max stopped dead in his tracks. Then he broke free of my mommy-parking-lot-handgrip (no small feat) and went racing back to the car yelling and pointing.Before I could scream at him about parking lot safety, he was pulling a dead butterfly out of the grill of my husband’s truck. Awesome. Of course the adults wanted to toss the thing and head in to wash... Read More

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