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April 10, 2020

Summarizing a mountain’s worth of stories, current events,
creative ideas and stuff that makes us lol


My toddler shouted “I NEED A BREAK FROM ALL OF YOU” and then
locked himself in his bedroom. When we asked what happened he replied
“nothing I’m just being daddy”

--WTFDAD, @daddydoubts

weekly survival tip

There’s a new government recommendation to wear face masks when we’re out in public. But said masks are in serious short supply. What to do? Well, we’re making some, so check our homepage to get yours and donate a few, too. While you’re waiting for those to arrive, you can get creative and use your ski buff instead. Here’s how.

trail talk

The news coming out of New Zealand is, for a change, actually really good. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s decisive action to impose a strict month-long lockdown is already working . After less than two weeks, the daily number of new infections of covid-19 is dropping and, by April 7, was less than the total number of those who have recovered from the virus. The borders are closed to foreigners, swimming at the beaches is forbidden, as is hunting, people are lining up six-feet apart to enter grocery stores one at a time and, like most of the rest of the world, schools are closed. Biking, walking and outdoor recreation is limited to the neighborhood in which people live. The government’s message has been simple: “Stay home. Don’t have contact with anyone outside your household “bubble.” Be kind. We’re all in this together.” It’s not an effort to contain the virus, as is happening in much of the world. Rather, it’s an effort to eliminate it completely. Although the speedy results are leading to calls to loosen up restrictions, Ardern is adamant that the lockdown will remain throughout two full 14-day incubation periods. Not everyone is happy about the closures, but there’s only been one death so far. So, as they say, the proof seems to be in this Kiwi pudding.

trail matters

For those trying to live in an environmentally friendly way (you know, composting, choosing reusable grocery bags, going vegetarian, maybe even installing solar panels on your home), electric vehicles are an appealing addition to the toolkit. And while sales of electric vehicles continue to grow, most consumers are still choosing traditional gas-fed cars. Sure, there’s the price. Electric vehicles are, by and large, not cheap. But there are also concerns about the range and how well electric cars will work for owners who want to get out of urban centers. One Outside writer took that challenge on during a road trip from Los Angeles to Utah’s national parks . While he definitely had some anxious moments, he also had a great trip and managed to get his battery charged enough when he needed it most. It’s still true that the more remote destinations and parks will be hard to access with an electric car. But, the writer gamely concluded, “driving off the beaten path has always required a little risk, an adventurous spirit, and, occasionally, turning to a friend when you get yourself in trouble.”

trail mix from home – with children in the mix who need something from you every two minutes – is a serious struggle. And we’re all in it right now. While there have been tons of suggestions floating around the Internet for how to engage kids while working, we’ve been finding that not all of them seem to work. That may be because the activities we’re choosing are not well suited to our children’s current schema. Wait, what? What’s a schema? Yeah, we didn’t know either, until we checked out this post that explains it all . Basically, a schema is a current area of interest your child is exploring. The theory goes, if you can choose activities designed to engage these interests in particular – sorting objects, building forts, wrapping toys – your little will actually enjoy what they’re doing, by themselves , for more than 5 minutes. And you? You’ll finally get to write more than one paragraph on the report you’ve been trying to finish for the last week. Sound good to you? Us too.

Now, when they’re done (and therefore, you are too), reading this book together might be another useful way to pass the time. It’s a child-friendly explanation of what the novel coronavirus is and a guide to exploring your children’s feelings about it. Spoiler alert: coronavirus really likes to travel. 😬

yard sale

Yes, we brought you John Krasinski last week too, but , the surprise he put together for one little girl on this week’s show was just too good not to share. It starts at 8:28 in the video. But watch until the end, you won’t be disappointed. If this doesn’t put a smile on your face, literally nothing will.


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