• Activities,  Opinions

    The other side of the story

    Let’s be real for a moment.  As much as we like to get outside and do stuff, there are times Emma just doesn’t want to.  So what is an outdoor parent to do? In our text-book, listen-to-the-experts parenting moments, we make our ideas to hit the trail, paddle the canoe or search for geocaches sound like irresistible adventures filled with scavenger hunts and the wonders of the world around us. In our luke-warm parenting moments, we bribe her to go just a little bit longer on a trail. Heck. We’ve bribed her just to get to the trail-head. In our less-than-stellar parenting moments, we just yell at her and “make”…

  • Opinions

    EVERY kid deserves a chance to go to camp (and why I support Tim Hortons Camp Day)

    Being a typical Canadian, it doesn’t take much convincing for me to stop in at Tim Hortons.  But on Camp Day, I make a special point to grab a double-double for myself and treat some friends, because supporting Tim Horton Camps is important to me.  Here’s why…. Did you go to summer camp? Do you remember how awesome it was?  I went to a sleep-away Brownie camp when I was around 8 or 9 years-old and it was my first taste of independence from my parents. I remember doing crafts with stuff we found in nature and I can still feel the frigid cold of the lake as though it was…

  • Opinions

    Every kid should go to camp

    Last year, I went to camp with Emma and her Grade 6 classmates for a year-end camp trip to Camp Brebeuf in Rockwood, Ontario. We spent almost 3 days and 2 nights outside, except for when we slept and ate our meals.  As a parent volunteer, it was pretty cool to experience (again) how powerful camp can be for kids. It has been a long, long time since I was a camp counsellor (BEST SUMMERS EVER!!!) but being at camp with the kids brought it all back and just reaffirmed what I have known since I led my own campers when I was a teenager…. Every kid should go to camp. I don’t…

  • Activities

    9 Camp Activities To Keep Kids Busy

    We started camping with Emma when she was 18 months old. We quickly learned that we didn’t have to bring a lot of toys to camp, but we did need to have some activities to keep her busy while we took care of “grown-up” chores around the site, or to keep her interested and engaged on hikes. Most of my ideas have come from my own memories of Girl Guide crafting, activities I did with kids when I was a camp counselor, and a nature-focus on activities Emma already enjoys at home. There are also lots of books, blogs and websites that can provide hours of fun ideas. With camping…