November 26, 2021
The holidays are upon us and there’s a lot of eating this time of year. Yeah, still full from yesterday? Us too… But if you have children who are picky eaters, all the focus on food can be tough. So, how to manage? Well, maybe by getting them to cook with you! Not only is it super fun (and, yes, super messy, true story), but it’s a great way to expose children to foods they might otherwise snub.
For the first time in Disney’s history, there are several Black Santas appearing at both Disneyland in California and Disney World in Florida. Because, as it turns out, there’s no good reason Santa has always and exclusively been depicted as white. And, representation really matters. It’s key not only for children to see characters like Santa who look like them, but it’s also key for children to see a Santa who may not. Why? Because by the time children are tweens, “racial biases and beliefs are effectively ‘set,’” which also means there’s not a lot of time to teach children about diversity. So, shout out to Disney, because time is of the essence.
And, then for your holiday weekend reading pleasure, how about one good long story to really dig in? Here’s one about a new kind of luxury travel where the customer is purposely abandoned in the middle of nowhere and left to find his or her way out alone. There’s a little more to it than that, but not a lot, truth be told. In this case, the writer is dropped off somewhere in Morocco and left to walk about 18 miles through the Atlas Mountains, spending two nights alone before reaching his final rendezvous point. The result is a mix of adventure, beauty and discovery. And also the knowledge that the whole affair was, admittedly, a bit contrived while still offering excitement and fulfillment, too. The writing here is a journey in and of itself.
Last week, Charles “Chuck” F Sams III, became the first-ever Native American confirmed to lead the National Park Service. His history-making appointment came via a unanimous vote by the Senate. It’s a noteworthy development given that the establishment of this country’s national parks came at a significant cost to the native people who used to call them home but lost them when the government took the land, often violently. Now, Indigenous leaders across the U.S. are hoping Sams, who is a tribal member of the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, can begin the long, difficult process of healing from that past trauma.
Spring may be peak mud season, but until the snow and ice reliably cover the ground, fall and early winter can be pretty muddy, too. But no matter the weather, you still need to get outside with your littles, so how to handle the mud? Sure, in certain spots, you can just let the little ones jump right in and enjoy. But muddy trails are a slightly different story. If you hit mud on the trail, it’s actually best to walk right through it, not around it. Surprising, right? And if the trail is a washed-out mess of goop, you should probably turn around entirely. Read more tips here from our friends over at Wildkind. They’ve also got inspiration for some great muddy games you can play with your kids.