Sunday, August 23, 2015

Camping Hacks: The Results are In

I hate packing.  I'll do pretty much anything to avoid it.
No matter how much I'm looking forward to the trip.

Procrastination: check
House cleaning: check
Highly organized master checklists creation: check



Fire starters - Highly recommend
Easy for kids to make, low prep (save the tubes & lint), easy to pack, effective

Stuff dryer lint into empty cardboard tubes, insert birthday candle.

Spice straws - Highly recommend
Easy to prep (not so much for kids), great size for packing

Use striker/match to melt one end of a straw, pour in spice, melt the other end.

Teeccino bags - Highly recommend
Easy to make, low prep, easy to pack, fast & tidy use, effective -- use two filters next time.
Even mint dental floss wasn't a problem!

Scoop teeccino, coffee substitute, coffee, loose leaf tea, what have you, into doubled coffee filters, tie with dental floss.

Toothpaste dots (not pictured) - interesting to try, but not worth the effort.  To be fair, they were recommended for backpacking, with, I think, the intention being to chew & swallow them.  Easier to pack a tiny tube of toothpaste.

In case you'd like to try them for yourself: squeeze dots of toothpaste onto tray, sprinkle with baking soda, and let dry.

How will I procrastinate next time?!  Please share your camping hacks.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Amigo Summer

Some summers what we really, really need is a break.  I'm sure I've written about this before.  It's a high ranking need.  Quiet repose in our comfy cocoon.  Time to putter and dip into things we don't get to during the rest of the year.  More time to sit.  More time to be still.  More time to notice more.

This was our June.  And it was lovely.

I knew that July would be an uptick in the rhythm.  And then August we would downshift again.

We finished July -- my heart racing a bit at the pace.  Not that I'm unaccustomed to this, though I am changing, changing my ways all the time.  But what I realized in taking stock of summer (as I always do), is that we'd lose the fast pacing, but keep all the extra time we've had with friends this go-round.

It's been the right summer to soak up friends.  Friends we see all year, friends we don't see often, friends we've never met in person!  Fun with friends.  Friends in the back yard with chickens.  Friends in the front yard with the sprinkler and ice cream cones.  Road trip friends.  Picnicking friends.  Friends in living rooms in elaborate games of make-believe.  Friends at dining room tables and craft stores.  Friends downtown.  Friends around campfires and with banana slugs.  Friends on hikes.  Friends on boats, in lakes, and in pools.  Friends in sleeping bags.  Friends with popcorn and movies.

A pretty fine set of arrangements I've finagled, I'd say.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Shel & Poetry Teatime: Perfect!


How many slams in an old screen door?
     Depends how loud you shut it.
How many slices in a bread?
     Depends how thin you cut it.
How much good inside a day?
     Depends how good you live 'em.
How much love inside a friend?
     Depends how much you give 'em.


I've made me a moon-catchin' net,
And I'm goin' huntin' tonight,
I'll run along swingin' it over my head,
And grab for that big ball of light.

So tomorrow just look at the sky,
And if there's no moon you can bet
I've found what I sought and I finally caught
The moon in my moon-catchin' net.

But if the moon's still shinin' there,
Look close underneath and you'll get
A clear look at me in the sky swingin' free
With a star in my moon-catchin' net.

And for the learnin' bit...

If we meet and I say, "Hi,"
That's a salutation.
If you ask me how I feel,
That's consideration.
If we stop and talk awhile,
That's a conversation.
If we understand each other,
That's communication.
If we argue, scream, and fight,
That's an altercation.
If later we apologize,
That's reconciliation.
If we help each other home,
That's cooperation.
And all these ations added up 
Make civilization.

(And if I say this is a wonderful poem,
Is that exaggeration?)

This one's going up on the kitchen chalkboard...


Draw a crazy picture,
Write a nutty poem,
Sing a mumble-grumble song,
Whistle through your comb.
Do a loony-goony dance
'Cross the kitchen floor,
Put something silly in the world
That ain't been there before.

Aaaaand, this:


Here comes summer,
Here comes summer,
Chirping robin, budding rose.
Here comes summer,
Here comes summer,
Gentle showers, summer clothes,
Here comes summer,
Here comes summer --
Whoosh--shiver--there is goes.