UPDATED: How to Dress for an Oregon Summer

Why? How do your kids dress for summer?

……….

UPDATED:

Hey, y’all! Since I posted this pic of Cai preparing for Oregon summer, I received this photo, How to Dress for an Alaska Summer, from my friend Carleta:

Carleta: “I can’t provide any explanation for what he is wearing.”

It made me laugh and laugh.

So, late at Facebook-night, I asked for your pictures because we may live far apart, but we are one in spirit and in strangely dressed kids. And, even though it was a holiday weekend, you sent ’em. ...  read more

Adoption and the Real Mom, Reprised

Sometimes when I write, I share the marital funny with you.

Sometimes when I write, I share the pee-laced mess.

Sometimes when I write, I ponder the thick, humid exhaustion we mamas breathe.

And sometimes when I write, I confess my guilt for not being at my mama best when we adopted our toddlers.

You and I just never know what’s gonna show up in a life full of kids, do we? ...  read more

If cleanliness is next to Godliness…

I handed my son a napkin.

You know, no reason.

He looked at it as though I’d handed him a Walkman. Or a Ming vase. Or brand-name cereal. Something so outside his experience as to be completely foreign.

Befuddled and with furrowed brow he said, “What’s this for?”

I think this sums up all I have taught my children about cleanliness. ...  read more

How to Make Friends and Messes and Fancy Sandwiches

A new family moved into our neighborhood this weekend. Like us, they have a 10-year-old daughter. Two minutes after their introduction, Aden invited the kid to our house to play, and the girls happily scampered away. Which makes me wonder why we worry so much about teaching kids social boundaries. Aden has none, and she’s clearly better at making friends than I am. Who am I to hold her back with my overrated, don’t-come-on-too-strong, give-them-some-space, clean-the-house-first, friend-making qualms? ...  read more

At-Home S’mores (aka Breaking the S’mores Commandment)

S’mores are only for campfires.

It’s a rule everyone knows.

After all, if we had s’mores every day, they wouldn’t be special, right?

Right.

God thinks so, too. That’s why “thou shalt not roast s’mores except around the campfire” is one of the ten (or so) commandments, somewhere after “dude, you gotta quit coveting your brother’s Pokemon cards or else do an extra job to earn the money to buy some for yourself.” (Psst… that last one is also known as the You Git What You Git and You Don’t Throw a Fit commandment, or, alternatively, the Get Off Your Whiny Hiney, Kiddo, and Fix Your Problem commandment. It’s almost like God was a parent, you guys.) ...  read more

Tent Erection Instructions

It was like the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade: Camping Edition as Greg and I gathered our family members to march our new tent from the wrong campsite, where we initially (and privately) erected it, to the correct site, where it should’ve been from the start.

You know what? We shouldn’t judge. Tent erection is a tricky business, and this is a relatively new tent, and stuff doesn’t always happen in the best, most appropriate places when we’re still learning. I think we should agree to give the tent a break and not embarrass him any further. OK? OK. ...  read more

We camp. I blame the Scots.

Beverly Beach, Oregon

We camp at the mercy of my extended family because, without the assisting army of grandparents and cousins, we simply don’t have the energy, expertise, vehicle space or motivation to move the Camping Mountain on our own.

And we camp because, using classic peer pressure techniques, my family makes us.

Yes, yes. I heard Nancy Reagan say it in the 1980’s: ...  read more