These are some pictures from a flight over Boston in March, 2021 with my mom and son in our Diamond DA40 NG – N920LA.
See more here: https://www.instagram.com/marco_bitran/
I am very proud to say that I was recently admitted as a Command Pilot for PALS https://palservices.org/.
Weekend trips can be the best choice for people who cannot find time to go for long vacations. Weekend trips will save your time, as well as free you from the stress and pressures of everyday life.
Following are some of the steps you need to follow to plan your weekend trip effectively:
1. Draft A Plan:
Firstly, you need to draft a plan. You will have to fix the day on which you are going, so that you can prepare beforehand for the trip. You also need to choose an appropriate destination, as you do not have much time. Do not choose a destination far away from your place as you will waste your time in traveling.
2. Plan a Weekend Trip as per your Requirements:
You need to plan a weekend trip as per your requirements. You might need to visit your relatives for a trip. Alternatively, you might want travel within the state. You need to select an appropriate plan that fits your requirements.
3. Select the Best Deal:
You need to perform a little research before you approach a local travel agent. Compare the rates of all travel agents in your city. Then, select a deal that offers relatively inexpensive rates. This way, you will save some money and get satisfaction from the trip.
4. Pack Correctly:
As you are not going for a long journey, you need to pack the luggage accordingly. First, you need to list down all the things that you wish to carry. Make sure that you do not over pack, as there will be difficulty in carrying them. You can stuff all your clothes by rolling them in your bag. This is the best method to protect your clothes from wrinkling.
5. Get Your Car Checked:
If you plan to drive in your car for the trip, then remember to check all components of your vehicle properly. Check the condition of the car and see whether it is suitable for a long trip.
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When I was a boy growing up in Baltimore City, I often wondered what it would be like to be a father. I always felt somehow, that I would be a good father, but I wasn’t sure how I would get there. For most of my childhood, I grew up in a single-family home with my mother. Our life during my childhood was good, but we often struggled as my mom worked really hard to make ends meet. I watched my mother work full-time while putting herself through college and taking care of me. As she continued to excel in her career, our quality of life became better. I truly admired her for that, but I was still missing something.
My father was around while I was growing up, but not on a daily basis. In fact, there were some long spans of time when I didn’t see my dad. When I had the opportunity to spend time with him, he taught me things, but they were usually most useful to me on the streets. I mean, he taught me how to be tough and defend myself. Those kinds of things were very helpful to me, but I also needed to be around some other positive males that could collectively teach me what being a man, and ultimately a great father, was really all about. I needed and wanted to learn how to do that.
As I grew into adulthood, I learned that it takes more than just reaching a certain age, or having the ability to reproduce that makes someone a good father. When I became a father, I realized that I was automatically inducted into an elite fraternity of brothers that easily surpasses any other fraternity that anyone could be a part of in terms of the level of importance. I came to understand that God charged me with the obligation of being a teacher to my children.
Over the years, I have made plenty mistakes while dealing with my children. Everything has not always gone the way I wanted, as nothing rarely ever does. I have learned that it takes a combination of several attributes that has helped me to become a better father. There are several characteristics that every father must incorporate within himself that can help him to be the best possible father that he can be. I have compiled a list of some of those characteristics.
1. Every father should be a role model for his children. So many young people tend to look up to celebrities to pattern themselves after. Some of those celebrities accept that role and handle it pretty well. On the other hand, I can’t count how many times athletes have rejected the responsibility of being a role model to kids. They don’t want that responsibility. There are others who seem to want the role, but are not fit to lead a five-year old to a kindergarten classroom. Above any other group, it is the father’s job to live the kind of life that any child would desire to emulate.
2. Every father should be a teacher. A father should instruct his children on all matters of life. That is not to say that a father should know everything. No one knows everything. The point is that the father should be involved in every aspect of his children’s lives. He should be there to provide advice and guidance to assist his children as they develop and progress through life. Fathers should certainly be able to share the lessons that he has learned during his lifetime with his children that may have profound effects on them as well. In my opinion, besides a school teacher, no other person should pour into a child more than their father.
3. Every father should be a disciplinarian as all children need discipline in their life. Fathers should be the catalysts of discipline for their children so that the judicial system does not have to become that catalyst. Being a disciplinarian is about teaching children to obey laws and to follow rules that are enforced by consequences. Developing a reverence for leadership should start with the father. If done correctly, children will most often grow into law-abiding citizens with a healthy amount of respect for authority in all areas of their lives.
4. Fathers are supposed to be the primary provider for their children. Financial situations are different for everyone, but the effort to provide should not solely be financial in nature, although it is very important. It is still just one aspect of providing. Other aspects of providing for children may include, but are not limited to friendship, love, security, emotional support, guidance, and life skills. This list of things could go on forever, but the point is that being an active father can have a positive and powerful influence on the development of our children.
5. Fathers can be empathizers for their children. We are a fountain of knowledge and information for our children. The experiences that we have gone through can help us to pass along wisdom that will be invaluable to them. We are the ones that can relate to our children the most. While there may be some variances to the situations that young people face today, we can still have some level of understanding and even compassion for what they go through. Sometimes our children may not even need us to fix all their problems. Just being there to listen to them could do wonders for their esteem and give them a sense of support.
Being a father is not easy for many reasons. There are so many things to deal with when it comes to raising children. It’s even more difficult when the father and mother are not in the same household. However, being a father is a great privilege that should not be taken lightly. Any man who is lucky enough to have children, is automatically inducted into the fraternity of fatherhood and should purpose in himself to live by the code of the fraternity. It is our responsibility to raise our children. If we relegate that responsibility to others, we are delinquent in our obligation to God, negligent to our communities, and ultimately accountable for the outcome of any of our children who become wayward.
Fathers, let’s work really hard together to make a positive change in the lives of our children. We have to step up our game. There are so many of our children who are going down the wrong path, but we can turn that around by increasing the level of activity that we have in the lives of these children. Whether a man is or is not a biological father, he can be a member of the fraternity of fatherhood by being a mentor to a young person in need. Understanding that fatherhood is difficult, we can also seek advice from each other when we encounter unfamiliar territory. We don’t have to try to do everything on our own. We are a band of brothers. We are the fraternity of fatherhood!
L. Wayne Smalls, Author of Called To Be A Soldier and President of L. Wayne Smalls & Associates, LLC. is a retired Army Officer who is now a motivational speaker and writer. See more at http://www.lwaynesmalls.org
While mothers have had their special day since 1914, fathers have only recently officially received the recognition they so richly deserve. After all, dad is the pillar of the family unit, the one who made us feel safe, loved to tickle and tease, and above all gave us a sense of security. While mom was the pillow to fall on, dad was the rock who held us up. Here are some thoughts and facts on Father’s Day, dedicated to every man out there who proudly wears the name DAD.
In 1909, listening to a sermon on Mother’s Day, Mrs. Sonora Smart Dodd felt inspired by Anna Jarvis’s efforts and felt there should also be a Father’s Day. Her father, Civil War veteran William Jackson Smart, had as a single parent raised his six children in Spokane, Washington after his wife’s death. She initially suggested June 5th, the anniversary of her father’s death, however, she did not provide the organizers with enough time to make arrangements, and the celebration was deferred to the third Sunday in June. Unofficial support from such figures as William Jennings Bryan was immediate and widespread. Calvin Coolidge recommended it as a national holiday in 1924 but the all-male U.S. Congress was mindful that passing a measure so favorable to males could be seen as a conflict of interest. In 1926, The National Father’s Day Committee met for the first time in New York City. Lyndon Johnson made Father’s Day a holiday in 1966, but the holiday was not officially recognized until the presidency of Richard Nixon in 1972 when he signed into law a permanent U.S. Father’s Day to be observed on the third Sunday of June.
When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years. – Mark Twain
I’m sure we all remember our teenage years and how true and insightful this statement by Mark Twain is. Here is another of my favorites:
It doesn’t matter who my father was; it matters who I remember he was. – Anne Sexton
What is a dad? I’m sure not everyone would answer exactly the same way but this poem by an unknown author seems to sum it up very well.
What Makes A Dad? -Unknown
God took the strength of a mountain,
The majesty of a tree,
The warmth of a summer sun,
The calm of a quiet sea,
The generous soul of nature,
The comforting arm of night,
The wisdom of the ages,
The power of the eagle’s flight,
The joy of a morning in spring,
The faith of a mustard seed,
The patience of eternity,
The depth of a family need,
Then God combined these qualities,
And then there was nothing more to add,
He knew His masterpiece was complete,
And so, He called it – Dad.
Perhaps the most important thing a father can give us is love. Hold on to your memories of youth. Those things that your father did that made you feel so special and loved. My favorite memory is of my father coming into my room one night when I was crying. He was so concerned even though to him, my problem must have seemed insignificant. By the time he left, I was happy, and the world was a brighter place. Many of us have these kinds of memories.
Excerpt from the song Dance With My Father
Artist: Luther Vandross
Back when I was a child, before life removed all the innocence
My father would lift me high and dance with my mother and me and then
Spin me around ’til I fell asleep
Then up the stairs he would carry me
And I knew for sure I was loved
If I could get another chance, another walk, another dance with him
I’d play a song that would never, ever end
How I’d love, love, love
To dance with my father again.
Be sure to let your father know how much he is loved and appreciated this Father’s Day.
sources – wikipedia.org, Compton’s Interactive Encyclopedia 1997
Summer vacations are perfect for hitting the road and having an adventure or staying closer to home and simply recharging. The slower pace and rest a vacation offers are priceless, but that doesn’t mean you should relax your financial vigilance. Here are some ideas to help you get the most for your money as you travel this summer.
Consider off-season tropical destinations
During the winter months, tropical hot spots command top dollar. But if you’re not averse to hot and humid weather, there are bargains to find south of the Equator during the summer months. Land a package deal to a Caribbean or South American destination and you can look forward to less crowded beaches and hotels in paradise.
Take advantage of the stronger dollar in Europe
For the first time in over a decade, the U.S. dollar is approaching a 1:1 ratio with the euro. That means American travelers can expect their vacation budgets to go further in the 19 countries operating on the euro currency. Airfare to Europe has also fallen, making this summer an ideal time to cross the Atlantic. If you plan to visit several countries, consider purchasing a Eurail pass to stretch your dollar across the continent. The pass allows you to travel between multiple countries by train within a 30-day window for one reasonable price.
Think outside the hotel room
There are more lodging choices than ever before if you’re willing to venture beyond hotels for your accommodations. Check out websites that coordinate home sharing in hundreds of countries around the world, typically at prices far below standard hotel rates. Also consider family-run pensions (short-stay boarding houses in Europe) and bed and breakfasts (B&Bs) for cheaper and more intimate stays. If you like having a full kitchen to make your own meals (also a money-saver), look into short-term vacation home and apartment rentals.
If you aren’t particular about where you travel or specifically when, you can often find last-minute deals online. These typically are package deals to specific cities or attractions that include airfare, hotel and other amenities like a rental car or some meals. Compare offers and determine which provides the best value. Also, when you’re booking airfare, be flexible with your travel dates to improve your odds of landing a better price. Consider a midweek departure and return to avoid paying higher weekend rates. Airlines also tend to start sales at the beginning of the week, so keep an eye out for promotions.
Traveling comes with expenses, but vacations memories are irreplaceable. If you need help planning your trip, consider working with a travel agent who can provide information and tips for saving money on specific locales. Also, consider working with a financial advisor who can help you budget and work toward both your short- and long-term financial goals including traveling, buying a home, saving for college and retiring.
Scott D. Serfass, CFP®, CRPC®, CDFA™, CLU®, ChFC® is a financial advisor and senior partner of Serfass, Phillips & Associates, a financial advisory practice of Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc. His team specializes in helping people retire confidently and develop plans to help families effectively share wealth across multiple generations. To contact him, visit http://www.ameripriseadvisors.com/scott.d.serfass
Approximately 925 million people across the world are hungry.
More than 9 million children under age 5 die every year and malnutrition accounts for more than one-third of these deaths.
I learned of these statistic while touring ECHO.
ECHO exists to reduce hunger and improve the lives of small-scale farmers worldwide.
Located in N. Ft. Myers Florida, ECHO is an information hub for developmental workers from all over the world.
Their purpose is to help those who are teaching farmers become more effective in producing enough food for their families and communities.
The International headquarters, in Florida, includes the Global Farm, Research Center, Seed Bank, Tropical Fruit Nursery, and bookstore.
Echo also operates Regional Impact Centers, providing resources to small-scale farmers, in strategic locations around the world.
These Centers are located in Chiang Mai, Thailand, Arusha Tanzania, and Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. In addition, they are working on a soil science project in South Africa.
I had the unique opportunity to tour the facility in N. ft Myers and see first hand the work being done.
The tour was educational and fascinating. Our guide, Vic, was entertaining and engaging. The tour, consisting of demonstrations, farming techniques, plants and animals; showcases innovative ways to help farmers in developing countries. We also observed some of the simple technologies being used in these countries.
One of the highlights was learning of the Moringa tree.
ECHO’s co-founder Dr. Martin Price first learned of the moringa while visiting an orphanage in Haiti. He wrote multiple articles sharing moringa’s amazing nutritional benefits including:
7 times more Vitamin C than oranges
3 times more iron than spinach
3 times more potassium than bananas
4 times more Vitamin A than carrots
4 times more calcium than milk
The crushed moringa seeds are used to clarify and purify water. The seed kernels kill 90% of the bacteria in contaminated water.
Moringa trees grow very quickly. The branches can be cut and placed in moist soil to root and grow into another tree.
This quick-growing, nutrient rich tree provides vital nutrition for those in developing countries.
Another interesting plant growing at ECHO is the Miracle fruit. The small red berry is used medicinally. When the fleshy pulp of the fruit coats the taste buds and inside of the mouth, something amazing happens. Even a sour lemon tastes sweet. The effect remains for 30 minutes or more.
I’m guessing the sugar industry would like this plant to remain a secret.
A couple more interesting discoveries:
Did you know that the mango belongs to the Poison Ivy family of plants?
I’m glad I’m not allergic.
ECHO also works to develop Appropriate Technology. Defined as “Technologies that fit well into a culture, environment, region, and way of life; as opposed to those facets forming around the technology.”
One of these technologies is the Biogas digester. It uses manure, food scraps and plant residue to create methane gas used for cooking. The high quality compost can be used for agriculture.
A portable hand washing sink, called a “tippy tap” can be used to reduce the spread of infection.
Gardening techniques are being developed for small spaces.
The Appropriate Technology used at ECHO serves as a teaching tool to prepare those working in development. These technologies use resources already found in developing countries to reduce workload, improve health and reduce fuel consumption.
The tour of ECHO was both interesting and inspirational. It left me with a renewed hope and a belief that those living in developing countries can be taught to help themselves overcome hunger. Run primarily by volunteers and interns, funded with donations, ECHO is making a difference!
Tours are as follow:
April through November: 10 a.m Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays
December through March: Tuesday-Friday at 10,12, and 2. Saturdays at 10 and 12.
Admission is $10 for adults (13+)
Child (6-12) $5
Children under 6 are free
Tours last approximately 90 min.
I would highly recommend this tour for anyone interested in world hunger, agriculture, gardening, simple technology or just wanting to see an amazing collection of tropical food plants.
It is a rare and unique opportunity to discover an organization making a difference around the world.
To learn more about ECHO and how to schedule a tour, visit http://www.thewaytowander.com
When discussing real estate, you often hear the term “curb appeal.” A home with curb appeal invites the prospective buyer to take a closer look, and it adds equity of thousands of dollars to the home’s value. Curb appeal can include flower beds, patios, driveways, or even swimming pools for homeowners who want to increase their property’s value. Finding the right materials to improve the exterior of your home can be somewhat daunting, but there is a great deal of help and information for the homeowner who knows where to shop. A good landscape supply company can guide you through the process. Whether you aim to create a low-maintenance look through a hardscape, design a thriving green space through a softscape, or protect your exterior from extreme weather with appropriate products, an expert can help.
Hardscapes, which are low-maintenance designs relying heavily on hard rocks, stones, and structures, often use rocks and stones underlain by sand or quarry dust. Many people choose hardscape materials when they have little time to spend caring for a garden or lawn. They’re ideal for people who have allergies and hay fever or people who have an allergy to the finely cut grass from mowed lawns. Swimming pools, stone patios or walkways, and fire pits are good examples of hardscapes. The hard materials can be used in a variety of ways, and they don’t need to be replaced or repaired as often as those used in softscapes.
Softscapes are areas that rely on living horticultural elements such as shrubs, flowerbeds, and trees. Softscape designs often use mulches and composting materials for planting beds and gardens, and the maintenance involved can be labor intensive. A landscape supply company should be able to provide the fertilizers, compost, and topsoil needed to enrich the area’s plants. Some companies may even be able to provide a range of suitable plants, as well as guidance for the overall design of the home’s exterior.
Winter can be rough on the exterior of any property, as ice can build up on the walkways and structures of hardscapes and damage the plants involved in softscapes. A landscape supply store should be able to provide a layer of mulch and plant coverings to protect your plant from some of the winter’s harsher weather. A good company should also be able to provide ice-melting materials for a hardscape. There are a few types of ice-dissolving products available, but only a handful are environmentally friendly and can be used around gardens. Calcium magnesium acetate is used more often than its counterparts because it is inexpensive and is effective at temperatures as low as 20 degrees, though it may damage asphalt or concrete. Carbonyl diamide, on the other hand, causes little to no damage to concrete, but it is not always as effective as other chemicals. A good landscape supply company will be able to direct you to the winter protection that best suits your purposes and budget.
Whether you need help designing your first hardscape or softscape, or you want to protect your home’s exterior from severe weather, an excellent landscape supply company will have the tools, products, and expertise to guide you in the right direction. Great curb appeal is never far away when you rely on the experts for help!
When it comes to landscape supply, NJ residents can learn more about their options by visiting http://www.brittonindustries.com/category-s/292.htm.
Planting trees on your property will ad value and equity to your home. Planting a new tree can be simple or complicated. It can involve landscapers designers heavy equipment and expense or you can buy a tree on sale for a few bucks, bring it home plant it in the lawn and walk away. Certainly, you’ll never be sorry for planting a tree especially after you see it grow large and strong.
One of the ways I have used to improve every property I have owned is to plant between 5 to 10 new trees every year. This works for me because I always live in the country on at least five acres but it can work for you even if you live in town on a small lot. Trees are an improvement to most any property and one of the cheapest improvements you can make. Look at 2 similar homes side by side. The one with nice large trees will sell quicker and for more money every single time.
The Right Location for your new Tree
Plant that tree in the right location and you really will have no regrets. Plant a tree that gets large a few feet from your house and you will sing the blues later as the tree rubs against your house and the roots damage your foundation. Plant a small tree or tree like shrub if you need to fill a location next to your house. Plant a medium tree in the back yard or side yard and larger trees if you have a large front or back yard. Follow these simple rules and you will have no regrets later when your tree reaches mature size
Planting the Tree
To plant a tree dig a hole shaped like a triangle. In the old days we would recommend you dig a round hole to plant your tree. Now we recommend a 3 point triangle shaped hole so the roots will not circle around the hole you dig. With a triangle shaped hole the roots will go out to the end of the triangle and penetrate the outer ground better. While this is not always a problem it can be so why not use the triangle hole and be sure. Do not amend the soil to much when you dig a hole to plant your tree. You want the tree’s roots to get into the regular soil right away and extend out to find water. I do recommend you dig a larger hole but only to break up the soil so the roots can penetrate it better.
The base of the tree where the roots flair out should be at or above the base of the ground, do not plant the tree so the base of the roots is below ground level. If the base of the tree is planted below ground level there is a danger that the planting hole will fill up with water allowing the roots to become water logged. This can be a problem if the soil is not well drained and the tree is planted in your lawn.
Watering your new Tree
Some people prefer to place a ring or berm of soil around the tree so it can be filled with water. A much better solution is to use a drip irrigation system and water enough so the soil becomes completely wetted down to the base of the roots and out a foot or so beyond the drip line of the tree. If you do not have an irrigation system and must water with a hose you can still use a drip irrigation setup and water longer but more slowly so the soil is wetted completely.
Buy a section of 1 inch pvc pipe and build a square section with an opening on one side large enough to go around your tree. This will look something like a U shape. Place drip emitters in the pvc every 6 to 8 inches. Use low output emitters, something such as 1 gallon per hour. This way you can connect the hose to this setup and leave it on low for 3 or 4 hours so it waters the tree slowly and the water does not run off but seeps into the soil completely. When you water your new tree this way you will be able to water more completely but less often.
If you do not have an irrigation system then you should add a note to your calendar to remind yourself to water the new tree you planted. Another thing I recommend is to purchase a moisture meter to check your tree. I purchased a moisture meter for my wife and she has turned into a house plant expert. Before I gave her the moisture meter she was killing our houseplants because she was over watering them. Now before watering she uses the moisture meter to check each one. She now finds that she does not need to water as often as was thought. The houseplants are doing much better now since they are not being over watered.
You can do the same with your new tree, use your new moisture meter and you will find sometimes your tree does not need as much water as you thought, while other times you may find your tree needs water more often. Check the ground down to about 6 inches deep, or as deep as the meter will allow. Check close to the base of the tree then graduate to farther out from the tree.
You should notice a difference in moisture level as you move out from the trunk. Later when the roots spread out into the surrounding soil the moisture should be more uniform as the tree dries out after each watering.
Should you stake that new tree or not?
While some say you should not stake new trees, I recommend you always stake the tree with at least one stake and maybe 2 if you are in a windy location. I advocate staking the tree very well for the first year. I have always lived in windy locations so I really have no choice when it comes to staking new trees. After the first year the roots will have penetrated the soil and should be able to hold the tree upright on their own even in a strong wind.
If you are in a very windy location then do not remove the stakes after six months but extend the ties or ropes between the stakes and the tree, this will allow the wend to move the tree more but still give the extra support needed in high wind. You can do this if you’re like me and you don’t want to take any chances with your new tree.
Fertilizer, should you add it now when planting?
I do not advocate adding fertilizer for the first six months to one year when planting a tree. Think of it like this, would you give a person who was weak from recent illness large doses of human growth hormone? Nitrogen is like human growth hormone to a tree. The tree grows fast and needs lots of water as a result of the new growth. If the tree has not had a chance to develop a good root system then the first time your forget to water all the new growth dies. Let your new tree develop a proper root system before you ask it to grow at full speed. Your tree should be able to grow fine on its own for the first six months.
You should try and time your fertilizer addition to the seasons of the year. If after six months you’re going into fall add some low nitrogen fertilizer. If after six months you find that spring is upon you add regular fertilizer. Obviously, you can adjust these time frames to suit your situation and fertilize sometime between six months and one year. Do not fertilize in the middle of the summer as this can cause leaf burn and even the whole top of your tree to die as did happen to me.
I have managed to kill the top on my potted Japanese maples on my patio a few times before I learned not to fertilize during mid summer. Learn from my mistakes and fertilize only in the spring and the fall using timed release fertilizer. I use a brand sold at the Home Depot called dynamite, I think it’s a stupid name but it’s a great fertilizer. It’s a time release fertilizer that last for 6 to 8 months. What makes it better then other types? Two features – one it is timed release and 2, it contains micro nutrients needed by plants and trees. I use this and ad it 2 times per year, spring and fall.
Watch out for pests
The last recommendation I will make is to check your new tree for insect damage in the spring and summer. Aphids beetles and earwigs love new growth and new tender leaves. Check the new growth on your tree for signs of insect damage. If you find possible insect damage to new growth or leaves do more investigating until you find out what is eating your new tree. Take a close up digital photo of the damage then seek advice locally from a good nursery, county ag agent or agriculture cooperative on what kind of pesticide will best protect your tree and kill the pests that are chewing on it.
With just a little attention and watering your new tree will grow and your pride, enjoyment and home equity will grow right along with it.
By Paige Mercer
We live in a world of convenience. We eat in restaurants, get our food from the store, and open a can to find vegetables. Is it any wonder that many children don’t understand how nature helps to provide us with the food we eat? But we can change that by teaching kids to grow a garden and at the same time help them to connect with nature. In addition to helping kids connect with nature, teaching them to care for growing things will help them appreciate the environment.
The first step in helping children grow a garden is to teach them the basics. Before the regular growing season begins, have the kids plant a bean seed in a paper cup filled with potting soil. Put the cup in a sunny window and show the children how to water and care for the little plant. As it sprouts and begins to grow, talk to the kids about how plants germinate and grow from that little seed. Once kids have experienced growing a plant inside, they are so excited to grow their own garden outside!
A child’s garden doesn’t need to be large or filled with a large variety of plants. Keep it simple and grow vegetables that kids like. Let your children participate in selecting the seeds, but encourage them to grow fun crops like pumpkins as well. Kids love to carve a Jack-o-Lantern out of a pumpkin they grew themselves! Just remember, pumpkins need room to spread out so leave plenty of space around the plant.
Help your children understand about natural fertilizers such as compost. Create a family compost pile for the plant waste and any kitchen scraps. Teaching kids about returning organic waste back to nature will help them understand the cycle of plant life. As the compost matures and is ready, let the kids help you work it back into the soil. Once they learn the basics of composting they will be more aware of what waste can be added to the compost pile.
Show the kids how to prepare the bed and sow the seeds. Teach them about proper watering, weeding and fertilization. As the plants mature and begin to crowd each other, explain the purpose of thinning the plants. Explain that for a bountiful harvest the plants need to have room to grow as large as possible. Some of the plants need to be removed to allow that to happen.
As you harvest your garden, teach your children how to preserve it by canning or freezing. This will help them understand how the food in the garden gets into the grocery store. If you have an abundant harvest, allow your children to take it to a local farmer’s market or food pantry. Sharing the harvest gives them a sense of service and compassion for those in need.
A family garden is a great way to grow close as a family while you teach about nature and the environment. Planting a garden can also create memories your children will carry with them forever.
Paige believes in teaching her children about nature and the environment. She loves to garden and finds ways to make it simpler. Like using a coiled garden hose [http://www.waterhosereel.org/coiled-garden-hose/] to keep her hose under control! She is happy when she finds the best garden hose storage [http://www.waterhosereel.org/garden-hose-storage] for her garden.