Learning to Fly: Kids, Caterpillars and Unfinished Homework

When our kids started kindergarten many moons ago, they were asked to bring in a Monarch caterpillar for their first day.  We searched and searched.  And searched.  And searched more, wandering through overgrown fields and frantically turning over the leaves of milkweed plants that the caterpillars eat. But no luck.  As a parent, I kind of felt like a failure. "Sorry kids, I know it's your first day of full-time school and all, but we can't hand … [Continue reading...]

A Sensory Carnival in Granada’s Albaicin Neighborhood

sacramonte, gypsy, music, grenada, spain, souk, magic

Buzzing mopeds, the exotic scent of incense and hookahs, fierce color, and leathered gypsies offering sprigs of rosemary... We've finally arrived in Granada.  And it's incrediblel!  Our family who is travel weary and coming off of a nasty stomach bug,  immediately snaps back to life. We're so grateful to enter this vibrant, boisterous place of mixed culture and wild history - both of which play leading roles in shaping the electrifying city known … [Continue reading...]

Pools… Beach style! #FriFotos

When I saw that today's #FriFotos segment was focusing on pools, I thought - TIDAL POOLS! Being raised in coastal New England and now living here again with my Texan husband and kids, this type of "pool" has become an integral part of our family's summer fun and a symbol for our lives.  They grow life, foster curiosity and change with every tide. When I was a kid we spent every summer soaking up the sun (harvesting our winter supply of Vitamin … [Continue reading...]

Climbing Inside a New England Lighthouse

If you've ever visited the New England coast, you know that lighthouses are a major part of the local charm.  One hour north of Boston in the historic village of New Castle, NH (just outside of Portsmouth, NH) at the mouth of the Piscataqua River, stand two of the areas beaming beacons: Portsmouth Harbor Lighthouse and Whaleback Lighthouse. Both are historically significant and breathtakingly beautiful.  A postcard shot for your … [Continue reading...]

Family Travel Planning & Reading Lists: The Spain Edition

For us, family vacation planning is like child development.  When your child is born you first confirm that all of the large, gross motor skills are functioning then move on to assess the more detailed, fine motor skills.  With trip planning it's generally same thing. We get the big heavies out of the way first... planes, trains, and automobiles.   When this stage of travel planning is complete  my husband & I heave a long, sigh of relief and … [Continue reading...]

Family Kayaking in Southern France

When I think of traveling to France, I envision long romantic dinners,  strolling hand in hand with my husband and savoring an afternoon espresso at an outdoor cafe.  This was how I experienced France in the past. Without kids. (Insert record scratch....) Not this time.  Enter baseball hat, bathing suit, copious amounts of sunblock and splash-happy  kids loaded in two orange kayaks while gliding below one of the most magnificent World … [Continue reading...]

Daily Photo – Flea Markets in Southern France

On a recent family trip to France, we visited the bustling flea market in Isle-Sur-La-Sorgue near Avignon.  This charming town, complete with fairy tale streams and antique water wheels is worth a visit any day of the week, but the Saturday flea market is exceptional.  The prices were a little high, but the kids haggled in French (thankfully, the people were very kind and adore kids!) and they found some reasonably priced treasures.  Here is a … [Continue reading...]

Bouncy Balls for Snow Balls

It's 2 March and we just had our first snow day (no school) of the year which is pretty unheard of, this late in the season, in our part of the world.  I've been waiting for this day all winter!  The first snow day is unique because you haven't been jaded by the wrath of snow and cold and you're still happy to see some of the white, fluffy stuff and snuggle by a fire.  However, this usually happens in November. Not March.  But I'll take … [Continue reading...]

Daily Photo – March 2, 2012

  In like a lion, out like a lamb!  March is here and that means summer vacation is just around the corner.  Here is a photo of our kids just before we entered Jackson, WY last summer.  We visited Grand Teton National Park and then headed south to Crested Butte, CO.  Idyllic summer break.  Fresh air, big sky and endless outdoor adventures.  We'll trek out west again this summer and we can't wait! … [Continue reading...]

Daily Photo – Idle boats

This is our local harbor on a misty, cool summer morning last week.  The skiffs were all at the dock - wasn't much of a boating day.  As much as I crave sunshine and heat in the summer, these cool days offer a quiet break and a welcome reminder of why we love living in Maine. … [Continue reading...]