Two years ago, the monarch butterflies came by the dozens. The hundreds. Here on Long Island, we sat on the beach in September and watched them flutter west all day long. They were following the edge of the ocean on the way to their wintering grounds thousands of miles away in central Mexico. The next fall, we saw none.
We want our children to have good manners, not only to say, "please" and "thank you," but to learn social graces as well, such as the ability to say, "hello," when greeted by another person-relatives, teachers, our next-door neighbors. But we also tell our kids not to talk to strangers. So where does that leave us with the supermarket cashier, the bank teller and the mailman?
April showers might bring May flowers, but they can also bring antsy, cooped-up kids who are eager to break free from the house after a long snowy winter. Although outdoor puddle jumping is always fun, a drier option is an indoor scavenger hunt, which allows your little ones to follow clues throughout the house to find something fun.
Here's a true confession: I hate compact fluorescent light bulbs. They're like the awkward cousin your conscientious mother makes you invite to your birthday party--the right thing to do, but a serious buzz kill. That said, I'll also say that I love what's lighting up my life instead.