Kids (92)

How Did We Used to Get So Many Vacations?

April means two things, to most adults who have kids: No more kidding around about your taxes, and the rugrats are loose for another week. But Portlanders are lucky, because local organizations have plenty of activities for their youngsters to get involved in, lest they go Lord of the Flies on us. To wit: What kid doesn’t love the story of Robin Hood? If your son or daughter goes straight to the dowels when you’re…

Easter Fun

The kids have already seen the Cadbury Bunny on TV. It’s too late to stop them on the candy track. That’s right, it’s Easter. In the old days, all it took was a couple dozen eggs and a pack of Paas. It was the policy of many families to have the children turn in their (real, hard-boiled) eggs for Mom and Dad to make egg salad with; that was lunch for the next few days.…

Talking Through the Unthinkable: Author Maria Padian's Wrecked

Don’t read this one with the kids unless they are educated about, and fortified against, the unthinkable.   April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. It has happened to some of us. A relationship of trust and confidence turns out to be nothing but the worst betrayal other than outright murder. Some bear their scars well, and others allow themselves to be more like their attackers than they would like, if they thought about at all.…

Lead Your Little Horses to Water

Did you know that the original storyline of the ballet Swan Lake included a disastrous ending for the dashing Prince Siegfried and his lovely Odette? Hint: That’s one secret you can share with your kids when you make one more attempt to interest them in the most beautiful form of dance. Go on and let them in on the secret: They’ve read about World War II, right? After that nightmare was over, the Bolshoi Ballet…

Was Your School Librarian a Real Character?

People that love books are a special breed. They can disappear into the pages of some volume for so long that you’re afraid they’ll never come back. But when they do, they always have something interesting to say.   The ones who are so in love with the magic of reading that they make a career out of sharing it with children, well, they’re even more special. And we as Portlanders are lucky. Our library…

They Won't Even Know It's Educational!

Kids are meant to play. And not just because it keeps them out of your hair for long enough to cook dinner. Cops and robbers, or pony boutique — it doesn’t matter. Very young minds are thirsty for experiences that allow them to exercise the judgment and confidence that they see in their adult role models, and play situations are just that. If your kids were pretending that the living room floor was a pool…

Look At All Those Stops!

Question: What’s the only musical instrument you can walk through? Answer: The mighty Kotzschmar organ. You know the one; you may have been subject to its booming resonations during Catholic Mass as a child, or even currently. Well, there is more to that melodic apparatus than meets the eye, and Portland’s own municipal Kotzschmar organist and attendant to the organ in Merrill Auditorium, Ray Cornils, is out to reveal exactly what the instrument is all…

Three Ways To Beat a Snow Day

All parents know that trying to get a stroller past a nasty pile of icy untended sidewalk, with precious cargo on board, can be a major hassle. And we all have cabin fever, young and old alike. So how do you get through the times when the snow is falling and there’s no hope at all for getting out this morning, or even this afternoon? Well, here are a few ideas that we have to…

That Time of Year Again...

It’s February vacation. The kids aren’t old enough to leave them at home alone. Their aunts and uncles work nine to five, like you, and they already have your nieces and nephews to worry about. Could we put them all in a room with a TV and a fridge and tell them to stay there while we’re at work? Why don’t they just have school year-round, maybe forty hours a week, like us? What if…

Should Your Kid Question What's Accepted?

Remember how the Red Hen was making a loaf of bread, and any animal that said, “Not I,” when she asked, “Who will help me?” didn’t get any of the fresh-baked bread? And remember how the ugly duckling, the one that all the other ducks picked on, ended up developing into a beautiful swan? Well, forget all that. It’s The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales. Jack’s giant snacks on the Red Hen,…
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