Screw the Rules, Sometimes

In our house, we’re pretty strict about certain rules. Our kids (four and seven years old), hear them all the time: no playing on the couch; it’s for sitting. No sliding on the banister; it’s a hundred years old. No jumping on the bed; it’s a fancy Sleep Number model and you’re likely to burst one of the air chambers. 

My kids handle the rules pretty well, abiding by most of them, and breaking others relentlessly (like the no-tipping-your-chair-back-at-the-table one, which all kids seem duty-bound to disobey). Continue Reading

A Few Treehouses

You know what sucks about treehouses? That’s right, absolutely
NOTHING! From tacked on shacks made of old pallets to grandiose castles
made of… money, and every Ewok-inspired leafy perch in between,
treehouses are brilliant. They are very essence of summer and childhood
distilled,  with winter on the way and a milestone birthday just passed
I could use some of both. So, here are a few particularly inspiring
examples of what happens when trees and architecture get together and
party… some of them considerably nicer than my apartment. Continue Reading

How to: Make DIY Shrinky Dinks

Easy DIY for making your own shrinky dinks and shrinky dink paper.

My parents are both science teachers: which means they always ruined the secrets to magic tricks, they forced me to identify every tree by leaf and bark type, and we always created our own versions of ‘science-y’ toys. We used to cook our Easy-Bake Oven meals with foil and a light bulb, and created our own slime with cornstarch and food coloring. Which brings me to our homemade shrinky dinks.

And, when we wanted our own shrinkable art, did we get the sweet pre-printed HeMan or Strawberry Shortcake shrinky dink Paper? Continue Reading