Wednesday, March 1st, 2017
these are the days. the long, dark, wet days. the days we spend trying to distract ourselves waiting for the sun to return. so when it does, you better believe we run to it.
see the other contributors here: www.childhoodunplugged.com
Monday, April 4th, 2016
i’ve had a hard time putting this post together for a couple of reasons; one is that it was a whirlwind and i am struggling to summarize it in words. the other is that the first few days of images from our travels and the build were lost – my memory card was corrupted.
still, i wanted to share a little bit about what we chose to do with our spring break. at the end of last year, one of my goals was to serve more together as a family and to connect on a deeper level with other families in our small community. a couple of weeks later, i was approached by two moms who had kids the same age as ours about potentially going to mexico with an organization they were connected to. to do what, at the time, we didn’t know. i said we were interested right away as it meshed with the goals i mentioned, but as i thought about it more, i began to question whether it was a good fit. looking back, i’m so grateful that we decided to jump in with both feet as it ended up being such a positive time for all of us.
we found ourselves in a small town on a hill, just outside san quintin, mexico, building a three room house for a family of five who had previously been living in a shelter made of scraps of plastic, fibreglass and cardboard. our kids were on site with us all week, helping frame the walls, paint the trim, build bunkbeds and generally entertain the crew. we also had the opportunity to visit a local preschool to do crafts and use our poor spanish to make them laugh.
while there is so so much i could say from how proud i was of my kids to how encouraging it was to build a friendship with this sweet family who had never even dreamt of being able to have a home that was safe and dry, i will just say that this was so much more than a “good experience” – i want this to be our way of life. i want to be looking at ways to love and serve others, i want our kids to think beyond their own needs and try to figure out how to meet the needs of those around them. while i have zero notions about saving the world, i have also been reminded that the small ripples created by loving others in tangible ways can certainly change it for the better.
click here for more childhood unplugged stories!!
Tuesday, December 1st, 2015
no one ever believes me. they go up to the vine and say, “those look so much like kiwis!”
every year i struggle through the delicate dance of when to pick them and how long to leave them ripening off the vine, but i think i may have finally mastered it. the only way i can get the kids to help is by promising they can keep the ones that look like butts. you think i’m joking.
and if you were ever curious as to what i look like when i’m running a fever, balancing on a lawn chair trying to extend my weak little body to get the ones on the top branches…this is it. thanks to my darling husband for documenting that.
more childhood unplugged stories here!
Monday, August 3rd, 2015
it’s difficult to even know where to begin when describing the wonder that we experienced on our trip to yellowstone and back. every place was so uniquely beautiful. and the people were even better. when we were looking at our summer trying to plan a getaway, a strategically placed weekend off meant we could make our first trek to visit my sister and her family who live in mammoth on the northern edge of yellowstone park. our route was dictated by the desire to connect with dear friends in high river, so though we took the long way, it was well worth it.
one of the best things about this trip for me was how well our kids handled the inconsistency and the amount of time we spent in the car. we did our best to make fun stops for them and to give them lots of activity (and food) while we drove. books on tape, wildlife spotting, roadside rock skipping and the license plate game were our saviours.
so here it is, the journey from western british columbia to the shuswap to southern alberta to the united states border to northern montana and finally the edge of wyoming. some planned stops, some not, pictures taken from mountain tops and through car windows.
this doesn’t even include our trip back which brought us through idaho and eastern washington…but that will have to wait for now! check out all the other summer adventures of my childhood unplugged cohorts.
Thursday, January 1st, 2015
if there was ever a time for nostalgia, i suppose it’s now. in a season rife with tradition, i can’t help but adopt a few of my own. i come from a mennonite background; a people with rich history who love God, good food, sturdy women and pacifism. which is basically me in a box, in case you’re wondering (though i do love to dance, which is a bit of a problem for the more conservative among us ;).
this year i decided to teach allie how to make new year’s cookies (aka portzelky, aka fat balls of deliciously raisin filled dough fried in oil). as the name suggests, they are typically made around new years and are meant to draw one further into the food induced coma they are just starting to wake from after christmas. everything about making these in my home brings back memories; the crispy fried raisins that fall off and you can’t help but eat and immediately regret because they have a crispy burnt flavor to them, the look of the dough stretching from the edge of the bowl, the bubbles as you drop them into the oil, the smell of the fresh baked fitters that clings to your curtains for days to come…the essence of nostalgia for me. and even though i know that eating too many may very well cause me to poop my pants, i just can’t help but indulge. you didn’t think i was going to get too serious on y’all, did you?
please go take a look at the other new years posts from the amazing women of childhood unplugged!
Monday, September 1st, 2014
as much as i detest war, i’m super fascinated by history and how these conflicts shape a country and culture. so when the opportunity came to pass by a fort at the end of our family vacation, i was excited to explore it. and my kids like guns, so it’s a win win (much to the chagrin of my little pacifist heart). interestingly enough, this fort was really never used as the invention of the airplane rendered it nearly defenceless in the early 1900s. if you’re in the area, i would highly recommend checking it out…bring a flashlight and scare the poop out of your kids in the bunkers.
take some time to go check out the other family adventures of the childhood unplugged ladies too!
Friday, August 1st, 2014
with wedding season being in full swing, i rarely get to take a proper vacation in summer, but this year we decided to stay more local and head down to the seattle area to a house by the sea.this was the best decision we’ve made in awhile…it was so relaxed and beautiful and while we thought we would do more of exploring of the city, we were happy to just stay home and enjoy the view. my kids read books, collected crabs and played card games – so dreamy.
my sister lives down in portland with her husband and four children and we were so excited to host them for a few days. last fall, their family took a trip down to florida to meet the family of her two adopted boys. shortly after they came home, melissa asked if they would be open to coming to oregon to visit, so three of their siblings made the trek on their first plane ride across the country to live with them for 6 weeks. we are so grateful to their florida family for being willing to share them with us. please be sure to check out the other amazing women who are a part of the childhood unplugged project!
Thursday, May 1st, 2014
about three weeks ago, i posted this picture on instagram:my four year old had just learned how to ride a two wheeler and we wanted to go for a family bike ride, but…i didn’t have a bike. in stepped a gracious friend to lend me the bike she’s not using at the moment. while i was super excited about this new acquisition, i was also a little nervous after not having ridden a bike in a couple of years. i asked my kids for some tips and my (now) 8 year old said: “believe in yourself”. once i recovered from hearing that (tears), this little dude says, “i’m so proud of you for riding a bike mom”. more tears.i will be honest and say that this particular morning, i was tempted to go on autopilot, stick on a movie for simon and hunker down at my desk to get some work done. but after 4 games of uno and two books, i knew that wasn’t going to happen. solution? put together a couple of packages for clients and bike down to the post office together. two birds, one stone. extra bonus, our sweet little town has a skate park and playground, so we had a snack, biked around and played a little hide and go seek to top it all off. he’s a good hider. go check out all the other beautiful posts by the childhood unplugged babes here!
Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014
spring break: bringing shrieks of joy…or pain across the nation. i love my kids. i really really do. and i like the idea of spring break. the reality of spring break, though, can be less than ideal, especially with young kids. the ideal: let them stay up late for popcorn and a movie as a treat so that they will sleep in the next morning. the reality: they stay up late and whine when they have to go to bed, even when it’s an hour past their regular bedtime. the next morning they are up even earlier than usual, are grumpy, fight with each other nonstop and shoot you death glares when you suggest an afternoon “quiet time”.
so even though we didn’t have big plans to go away this year, we threw together a last minute one night “staycation”. i googled hotels within a 2 hour drive that had a waterslide. squamish, here.we.come.
another family showed up after we had been there a few minutes, so i put my camera away so that i didn’t look like a creepazoid. but i could have shot inside there all day.on our way home, following google maps, i looked for the road that cut closest to the water and we ended up here. thanks google! this post is a part of april’s edition of childhood unplugged…head over here to check out the other amazing women who are a part of this fun project!