Sturgeon, Slip-n’-Slides, and Sunburns

We’ve had an unusual amount of cooler weather and rain in Boise this June. By “cooler” I mean only about two or three days with temperatures near 100, and the rest a pretty even mix of mid-80’s with sunshine and 60’s to 70’s with rain. It has left all the foothills much greener than typical years, and made me a much happier person who is actually willing to go outside with her kids a lot of days. Which is good, because three out of four of my kids really want to play outside every day (and the fourth kid – Zoey – claims she doesn’t but then is always pretty happy once I force her out there).

A couple weeks ago, I took the kids to the M.K. Nature Center to meet up with their cousins and walk around. It was a sunny day, but one where the temperature maxed out around 75 in the afternoon, making it really pleasant for walking around outside midday. The kids always love seeing the enormous sturgeon in the ponds, walking the trails and seeing the crayfish and small fish in the windows along the paths. It was made even more exciting this time by getting to have their cousins along. Both of our families have been isolating during this whole pandemic, so we felt it safe to finally allow our kids to start seeing each other once our family finally got past all our symptoms.

Eleanor and Zoey owls
Dinah is almost three feet tall – less than half the length of the biggest sturgeon in the ponds at MKNC

On the hotter days, I get out the kiddie wading pool, or set up the slip and slide or sprinkler in the backyard. Then the kids basically run amok while I sit in the shade. This is a setup that leaves all of us quite happy.

Two weekends ago we went camping at Pine Flats and I took exactly one picture because I was too busy enjoying the peaceful solitude as I sat in a camp chair in the shade with my book and adult beverage while all the kids’ cousins kept them happy and entertained. It was delightful.

We arrived home from camping to two days of blissfully cooler temperatures and rain. I tried to take advantage of the overcast morning and damp soil the day after all the rains and got out in the yard to do some weeding. Unfortunately, the sun started peeking out while I was weeding and my t-shirt must have gotten hitched up a bit in the back. I know this because it has been three days and I’m still dealing with the painful results of the sunburn equivalent of a “tramp stamp” that is now across my lower back. That area of skin hasn’t seen the light of day since before my second child was born, so it was apparently extra sensitive to the sudden, unexpected, unfiltered UV exposure.

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