20 August 2010

"No matter what happens, travel gives you a story to tell."

At the end of July we took our first family vacation to New Buffalo, Michigan.  We stayed in a hotel suite on the beach, it was the perfect family get-away with two young kids.  Everything was within walking distance....the beach, restaurants, shops etc..  We spent the first day on the beach and we discovered our little 2 year old, Mallory is NOT a beach girl!  She didn't like the sand and was afraid of the water.  After much encouragement I finally got her to feel the water and put her feet in it!  Jillian, being 4 months old, slept through most of the beach day.  We have higher hopes for sand and water days as they get older.  Another day we took a drive along the scenic Lake Michigan coast and discovered a beach/dunes that was beautiful!  We agreed if we come back we definitely need to make that a day trip!  My favorite night of our little vacation was our last night there.  We ate dinner at the hotel restaurant and sat outside on the patio facing the harbor.  It was a goregous night and we took our time with dinner as we watched the sunset.  After dinner we walked over to the beach, with the sun just having set and the summer breeze it was the perfect night!   It definitely was hard traveling with two young kids in diapers but undoubtedly worth it!  I hope to make our Michigan vacation a yearly occurance and I'm looking forward to the memories we'll continue to make there!

The few moments we got her to play in the sand!

Baby Jillian and Mommy
Quick shot while she finally touched the water!

Local ice cream shop stop

Dinner on the hotel patio...Mallory's expressing her dislike for the camera!  

Jillian and daddy at dinner

Our view from the patio at dinner

Evening walk along the beach

19 August 2010

"We don't remember days; we remember moments"

Just a few shots of Mallory taking a bath.  About 90% of the time Daddy gives her a bath and she loves it!!  They have their little routine and little games they play.  Usually I'm in the nearby room putting Jillian down and I love to "over hear" their conversations.  Lately Tony has been telling her to dream at night about puppy dogs, ice cream and rainbows! Sooo sweet....I know she won't remember these moments but I love documenting them to share with her someday!                                

03 August 2010

Last Child in the Woods

I recently read a summary/article about the book The Last Child in the Woods by Richard Louv.  In short the book is about how there's a need to save our children from the lack of disconnect to nature.  He calls it nature deficit disorder and believes many culturally current childhood issues such as ADHD, depression and obesity are a result of this major divide between our children and the great outdoors.  Although I've only read exerts from the book I think that Mr. Louv may be on to something here.  I see exactly what he references happening in our own neighborhood.  There's perfectly built fences and paved sidewalks, there's constant parent supervision, there's culd-e-sacs and isolated subdivisions, there's beautifully landscaped neighborhood pools and ipods, cell phones, and many other methods of being incessantly plugged in.  Where are the "woods" to explore, the creeks to catch crayfish, the open fields to pick dandelions, the kids playing outside until the street lights go on?  Where are the mud pies?  We used to sit at the edge of my drive way and find puddles, sticks, and rocks and make mud pies for what seemed like hours!  It's very sad to think my own children will be part of this "Last Child in the Woods" generation.  I've written about this a bit in previous posts but only recently came across this book.  So what did I do upon reading about it?  I took Mallory outside to make good old fashion mud pies.  I encouraged her to do it herself, feel the textures and most importantly get messy!!  I would love to report that she adored the event but she wasn't as delighted about feeling nature as I would have liked her to be.  After about 10 minutes she said "play bubbles now."  I was momentarily disappointed and then I realized how young she was and all I can do is continue to give her those experiences and hope that one day she seeks them out herself!
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