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Preserve Parent: Raising Kids at Silver Creek

Preserve Parent: Raising Kids at Silver Creek
Few people come to our birthday parties. We rarely go out to dinner. I am trying to put off organized sports for at least a couple more years. The over-scheduled child? I wonder if there is any concern about the rarely scheduled child. Nine years ago this week I moved into the house on The Nature Conservancy’s Silver Creek Preserve in south-central Idaho. I remember it being so quiet at night, with so much to do, see, and explore during the day. I was single then but I got married here, right on the preserve. But it was really not until the two kids I had here got older that I realized just how lucky we are. We live about a half an hour away from town. We drive enough during the week to and from school that any time we are able to stay home, we do. Our drives to school include games about who sees the first moose or, when it gets dark in winter, who sees the first owl. I can’t remember the last time I scheduled something for my kids to do and yet I also can’t remember a time recently that they needed or wanted something to do. Most days, we take a walk to the visitor center to see the volunteers and then wander to the creek, looking for critters along the way. They teach me all kinds of things. When my youngest son put a dead garter snake in one pocket and a big black beetle in the other, I realized that garters don’t smell bad when they are dead and that the big black beetles always smell bad. The boys have recently discovered fishing which to my mind…
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