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Sunscreen – What This Mom of Four Chooses – Katie Kimball of Kitchen Stewardship :066

Finding a sunscreen that is non-toxic and effective is so important to this mom of four, she tested 80 brands to set her – and hopefully your – mind at ease.

Katie Kimball, founder and creator of the Kitchen Stewardship blog and Kids Cook Real Food e-course, teaches listeners how to choose between chemical and mineral sunscreens, which sunscreen ingredients to choose, versus which sunscreen ingredients to avoid.  Katie dives into the dangers of chemical sunscreens, the efficacy of chemical sunscreens, and if there are any safe chemical sunscreens we can use.  She goes over the different types of zinc, which forms are safe versus unsafe, and if sunscreen is safe for infants.  She then tells listeners about her amazing resources to help moms get healthy, whole foods back into the kitchen, and how her e-course teaches kids the essential life skill of cooking using her own kids as teachers.

In this podcast, Katie discusses:

  • The difference between chemical and mineral sunscreen
  • The difference between active and inactive ingredients
  • “I can’t even stomach thinking about petrochemical sunscreen on my kids’ skin.” – Katie Kimball – Kitchen Stewardship
  • The difference between titanium dioxide and zinc oxide
  • What makes a sunscreen safe versus unsafe
  • The problem with the high amounts of estrogen mimics found in chemical-based products and why it’s problematic – “one application of conventional sunscreen on a bikini-clad woman is equal to daily hormonal therapy for menopause.”
  • Red flag words to look out for on a sunscreen bottle
  • Ingredients to avoid
  • Ingredients to choose
  • The trouble with Avobenzone – staining clothes
  • Why to choose non-nano zinc in sunscreen.
  • Changes that the FDA has made to regulations for sunscreen
  • If higher SPF is better, and which SPF range is optimal
  • How this mom of 4 balances healthy sun exposure for her kids
  • The importance of Vitamin D, and how to use sunscreen in a way the allows sun exposure and sun protection
  • Her inspiring and helpful work and resources available at Kitchen Stewardship and why getting kids into the kitchen is important the mind-body-and-soul of the kids and the family
  • The skills each age level, from 2 years old and up, will gain from her Kids Cook Real Food e-course


Contributing Podcaster, Lori Rose, PhD’s teaches

“Everything You Need to Know About Sun Health” 

Demo, e-booklet + 3 Recipes!

How much sun is ok?

What about kids?


Free for a limited time – Join us!

Learn more here.


Katie Kimball Kitchen Stewardship - Weight Free WellnessKatie Kimball is a Catholic mom from Michigan who has shared her journey to real food and natural living for 8 years at Kitchen Stewardship, a blog that helps families stay healthy without going crazy. Along with her 4 children, she created the Kids Cook Real Food eCourse to help other parents teach their kids to cook, so that they too can get a little break (and raise healthy children who can eat their vegetables). The course serves 4,000 families from 6 continents and over 10,000 kids are learning to cook!

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Follow Your Dreams – Author and Illustrator Michelle Nelson-Schmidt :065

Children’s author Michelle Nelson-Schmidt shares how facing our fears is crucial to the true wellness that comes from following our dreams.

Michelle Nelson-Schmidt is a children’s book author and illustrator who travels the nation teaching children how to face their fears, listen to their inner voices, be themselves despite what the world tells them, and to follow their dreams.  Her story is liberating and inspiring, and shows us that while the road to your dreams may be rocky, scary, hard, and full of failures and mistakes, it’s worth it.  Her books are meant for children, but her message is equally important to all adults because we have been hurt, squashed, and bruised from the negative messages of the world.  Michelle’s wisdom through her stories teaches us how to listen to our hearts underneath the loud voice of our fears, embrace our true authentic selves, believe in the magic of giving, and tune in to our interconnectivity to each other for true wellness.


“When you start to trust in who you are in this world and listen to your heart amazing things begin happening [sic].” – Michelle Nelson-Schmidt


Michelle Nelson-Schmidt - WhatifMonsters.com - Follow Your Dreams


“A bad test grade does not make you a bad person.” – Michelle Nelson-Schmidt

Listen to the podcast to hear:

  • How Michelle’s message changed the entire course of my wellness path and career
  • Michelle’s winding path to following her dreams
  • How Michelle felt watching everyone else following their dreams while she wasn’t
  • How just because you are good at something doesn’t mean it’s your true calling
  • How it felt to choose the safe version of her passion instead of going all in
  • The difference between hard work and heart work, and how following your dreams requires both
  • Why the freedom to fail and embracing mistakes is crucial to following your dreams
  • What Jonathan James and the What If Monster teaches us about facing our fears and anxiety
  • What Bob is a Unicorn teaches us about being ourselves and find our tribe
  • What Cordelia teaches us about taking accountability for your choices, owning your passion, and making the world better because of it
  • How Michelle’s very successful marketing strategy is very different from what we are taught, and how to embrace giving
  • The difference between giving to get, vs. giving for joy
  • The difference between expectations vs. faith
  • The importance of interconnectivity for maintaining joy

Michelle Nelson-Schmidt - Cordelia


“Just because some people don’t ‘get you’ or understand you does not mean you’re wrong and you gotta’ stay true to yourself because eventually what happens is your people find you. People that think like you, act like you – we’re magnets in this world. ” – Michelle Nelson-Schmidt


“When you shine your light you give permission for others – you shine that light on others and you give permission to everybody else (to shine).” – Michelle Nelson-Schmidt

Contributing Podcaster, Lori Rose, PhD’s teaches

“Everything You Need to Know About Sun Health” 

Demo, e-booklet + 3 Recipes!

How much sun is ok?

What about kids?


Free for a limited time – Join us!

Learn more here.


About Michelle Nelson-Schmidt

Michelle Nelson-Schmidt - WhatifMonsters.com - Follow Your DreamsI am Michelle Nelson-Schmidt, I live in Lilburn, Georgia and I have the great privilege of getting to be an author and illustrator for EDC Publishing. After about 10 years eeking my way towards that goal while working full-time as a mother and graphic designer, I am finally doing it full time. Sometimes I need to pinch myself when I realize that this is actually my life. I still sometimes look behind me to see the ‘author’ that a person next to me is talking about. I write and illustrate books for kids. Wow! THIS IS MY LIFE! I travel to schools all over the United States reading them my books, talking about my journey and encouraging them to follow their dreams – with everything they’ve got – no matter what! Because my life is magical, it truly is and every minute, even the doubting, painful ones were so worth it to get to here, I want every person I know and meet to understand that this life is meant to be magical – and we all can have a magical life. You just have to have the courage to look for it and work for it.

I love that I get to show my children and all the children I meet (over 400,000 now) that life is what you make it. That persistence and hard work will overcome almost any obstacle – and I of course have to make sure that they know reading is pretty much the key it all, no matter what your dream.

When I am not traveling I am busy being silly and having fun with the loves of my life – my husband Kevin, my son Noah, my daughter Sophia and our two crazy dogs, Piggy Pie and Otto Von Schmidt. They are all my everything and I love them more than bees love flowers!


Enter Michelle’s wonderful world full of freebies, inspiration and and books at here.

To join her each Wednesday on her Story Time Live, follow her on Facebook here.

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Dina Amsterdam Founder of InnerYoga on “Embodied Presence,” Montessori and Leadership :051

Dina Amsterdam, founder of InnerYoga and so much more!

“InnerYoga – How you meet life’s challenges and opportunities, on and off the mat.

Awareness. Kindness. Breath. Ease. Courage.”

Despite being involved in several projects, Dina teaches regular yoga classes in the San Francisco Bay Area, conducts InnerYoga teacher trainings, and is working on a couple of books. She admits enthusiastically that what is taking up a great deal of her time is her role which began at the MIT Media Lab.

Dina is the National Director of Leadership Development Coaching and Wholeness (creating a culture of wholeness) for the The Wildflower Foundation Schools.


“In order to be deeply healthy and empowered it’s important to be connected to the physical body, the emotional body, the mental body, the spiritual body and the energy body.”

– Dina Amsterdam, InnerYoga


Here are some of the intriguing topics we discussed:

  • Do you have to meditate in a crossed legged position on the floor to benefit? Dina shares about “Embodied Presence”
  • How the market crash in 2008 prompted her to expand her yoga teaching for her students who had increasing need
  • Perspective
  • InnerYoga is about Self-observation without Judgement, Cultivating Kindness
  • Dina emphasizes that one thing that makes her yoga teacher training unique is that about half of the training is how to take yoga into your life. Living your yoga!
  • Inspiration
  • Dina coaches leadership capacity with Montessori teacher and C-level clients (Well-being in the Workplace). She shares some key coaching insights she gives her clients.
  • “It’s really about helping a person identify what their biggest challenges are and then helping them see how they can utilize that challenge as an opportunity.” – Dina Amsterdam, InnerYoga
  • Courage
  • What is “acceptance”?
  • Fierce Compassion
  • Eating Disorder – Binge Eating
  • Her role as National Director of Leadership Development Coaching and Wholeness (creating a culture of wholeness) with MIT Media Lab and the Cambridge-based Wildflower Montessori School pilot Lab School
  • How she coaches Montessori teachers to set up their “inner environment”.
  • Wildflower Montessori: shop-front concept, the role of nature, artist in residence, community, etc.
  • “We believe that the environment deeply impacts the children.” – Dina Amsterdam, InnerYoga
  • “The parents are just as important to us as the children.” – Dina Amsterdam, InnerYoga
  • Inner Landscape Cards – Tools that she has created to help children (and adults) navigate their “inner landscape”: faces, landscapes and color washes to help children express how they are feeling.
  • Dina shares her InnerYoga wisdom of how to navigate emotions in challenging times.
  • Vulnerability
  • Anger
  • To Facebook or not to Facebook?


About Dina Amsterdam

Dina Amsterdam has been leading mindfulness-based offerings for over 20 years. She is currently a visiting scholar at the MIT Media Lab in Cambridge, MA, and works privately with a variety of organizations as an executive coach and head of leadership training and development through her company Leadership Within.

Dina’s Leadership Within mission is to transform workplace and educational environments into cultures of evolutionary self-awareness, embodied presence, and inspired collaborative creative purpose. For the last several years, she has been honored to do this work in support of the Wildflower Montessori network of schools, an open-source approach to Montessori learning developed at the MIT Media Lab. Additional current and previous clients have hailed from Google, Founders Fund, Expedia, the New Yorker, and Innovation Endeavors—to name a few.

A yogi and meditator of over 20 years, Dina is the founder of InnerYoga, a therapeutic approach to yoga that invites deep inner listening and awakens the 4 foundations of awareness, kindness, breath, and ease within those who practice it.

The philosophy and methodology of InnerYoga is deeply rooted in a variety of ancient wisdom practices as well as psychoneuroimmunology—the scientific understanding of the body-mind as the interaction between psychological processes and the nervous and immune systems.

To date, through both Leadership Within and InnerYoga, Dina has supported well over 100,000 people, in person, on their path to embodied mindful well-being and evolutionary living.

Check out Dina’s website.

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How to Live Free of Medication: ADHD, Autism, Apraxia and Anxiety with Jennifer Kozek :049

ADHD, autism, and anxiety were familiar subjects to Jennifer Kozek, a board-certified psychotherapist.

When her four year old son was diagnosed with severe anxiety, apraxia, ADD/ADHD and a Pervasive Developmental Disability (PDD), she became much more interested in how to treat him naturally, despite her medical training.

In this podcast Jennifer shares her experience as a psychotherapist and mom. Most of all she shares her wealth of knowledge including insights from her book: Healing Without Hurting: Treating ADHD and Autism Spectrum Disorders Naturally and Effectively Without Harmful Medication.


“Autism is an autoimmune, metabolic and digestive disorder.” – Jennifer Kozek


Here are some of the points of what we discussed:

  • What’s the difference between a counselor, psychologist, psychotherapist and psychiatrist?
  • The story of her son: born at 32 weeks and in NICU for 6 weeks because of undeveloped digestive system… Jennifer later learned this meant he had an underdeveloped immune system
  • Hepatitis B vaccine
  • Hypotonia
  • The many symptoms that in hindsight were due to his diagnosis: delayed cognitive development, overly sensitive to tactile stimulation, speech apraxia, delayed to walk, “spacing out”, troubled sleep, social interaction, energy
  • “We had to reduce inflammation.” – Jennifer Kozek
  • Delays in development blamed on premature birth
  • Brain-gut Connection
  • Epigenetics
  • Allergy testing – how to test for accurate results
  • The truth about infant formula
  • Factors that a person can take for prevention
  • Managing necessary diet changes while keeping eating disorder prevention in mind
  • How still “live life” with diet restrictions with school activities, birthday parties, etc.
  • Nutritional deficiency
  • “Some of these kids don’t produce neurotransmitters well.” – Jennifer Kozek
  • Where to begin with elimination diet
  • Food sensitivities
  • Therapies: Neuro-feedback, Brain Balance Therapy, Brain Gym, Cranial-Sacral Therapy, Shaman, Chiropractic, Naturopathy
  • What to do if insurance does not cover therapies
  • Blood types A and O
  • Prenatal care
  • MTHFR gene mutation
  • Why to take folate rather than folic acid
  • Whole food vs. synthetic vitamins
  • How babies get the beneficial bacteria into their bodies
  • Cord blood banking – beneficial or not?
  • Other benefits: Jenn is now off Zoloft and lost 20 pounds!



“What’s interesting about with these kids [ADHD and Autism Spectrum] is they either crave these foods that they are most sensitive to or they push it away.” – Jennifer Kozek


“Don’t give up and trust your gut!” – Jennifer Kozek


Helpful Resources Mentioned in Podcast

Healing the New Childhood Epidemics  – Dr. Bock, M.D., and Cameron Stauth – Book

The Feingold Diet

Vaccine Revealed- Documentary

Vaxxed – Documentary


“Nutritional deficiencies are really at the root of all these disorders [ADHD and Autism Spectrum].” – Jennifer Kozek


About Jennifer Kozek

I’m Jennifer Kozek, a board-certified psychotherapist and the author of “Healing Without Hurting: Treating ADHD, Apraxia, and Autism Spectrum Disorders Naturally and Effectively without Harmful Medications.” I specialize in working with the families of children with Autism, ADHD, and their co-morbidities. I’ve seen firsthand the havoc these diagnoses can wreak, and was driven to explore alternative treatments. Thankfully I discovered natural solutions to address the underlying causes of these conditions without the need for harmful or intrusive medications.

For me this is not simply professional, but personal. At age four, my son was diagnosed with severe anxiety, apraxia, ADD/ADHD and a Pervasive Developmental Disability (PDD). Through extensive research and implementation, I began to see how much my sons mood and behavior improved with lifestyle changes and alternative treatments. These changes included a reduction of hyperactivity, depression, and anxiety symptoms. In addition, he was focusing better, his executive functioning improved and he began sleeping soundly. I discovered far better solutions than any of the conventional practitioners had to offer, made it my mission to support other children and families.

As a national speaker, I’ve toured the country conducting workshops, and sharing my expertise with parents, teachers, and healthcare professionals. Now I’m here to help you personalize and implement these strategies for healing. The time for struggle is over – healing without hurting is here.

Visit her website at HealingWithoutHurting.com



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Parents Recover Daughter from Autism Naturally :046

Autism can be Overcome Naturally

Michael and Holly Larsen are parents to twin daughters. Their daughter Tula, Holly says, was born with three strikes against her – which they suspect were factors in their daughter’s autism:

  • She was born via c-section which did not allow her to receive the beneficial flora from the birth canal
  • Tula received antibiotics the first two days of her life (killing much of the beneficial flora she had)
  • She also was not able to consume breastmilk (she only had formula)


Michael and Holly realized that something was “off” with Tula compared to her sister; when her sister Thea would get a cold, Tula would get the flu or pneumonia for example. They had Tula’s stool and urine samples sent in and discovered that she had essentially no beneficial gut flora and the yeast was “off the charts”.

This means that Tula’s body was not able to absorb nutrients which was confirmed in tests – despite taking high amounts of supplements.

Tula craved breads, pastas and yoghurt, which Michael and Holly admit as young parents they thought were healthy foods for their family.

With myriad symptoms on the Autism Spectrum Tula was diagnosed at the age of 3. Determined to find solutions for their daughter, Holly began researching online and through a lot of trial and error finally discovered that a change of diet was necessary.


“I thought… I never want to look back and say that we didn’t try everything that we could.” – Holly Larsen, Mom who helped her daughter recover from Autism


First they took away the gluten and dairy, but the real changes happened when they eliminated high-glycemic foods (high sugar) from Tula’s diet – which fed the yeast in Tula’s gut.


“…yeast acts like a parasite. You are the host and the parasite is controlling the host. It does it in the form of cravings, changing your mood …your tastes change too.” – Michael Larsen, Dad who helped his daughter recover from Autism


Within a couple of weeks of using the coconut kefir they noticed a dramatic improvement in Tula, i.e. in speech, eye contact. Within that year her autism diagnosis was dropped.


“As her gut healed her tastes for food changed for the better. Now one of her favorite foods is broccoli. That was one of the toughest things on the list initially.” – Michael Larsen, Dad who helped his daughter recover from Autism



Not only did Tula Recover from Autism

Thea, Tula’s twin sister no longer has eczema or chronic yeast infections.

Michael lost 40 pounds. He used to be anxious, stressed and depressed which he thought was due to work. He no longer has brain fog and can do more and think faster with a smile on his face.

Holly no longer takes Prilosec, which she took for over 10 years for acid reflux.


“We really do attribute the crux of her recovery (from autism) to diet.” – Michael Larsen, Dad who helped his daughter recover from Autism


Tips for Helping your Child Overcome Autism

“Kids eat with their eyes first.” – Michael

  • Make food/eating fun. Michael would make pirate ships from food.
  • Find likeminded people; support. You’re not alone.
  • Join groups on Facebook.


“The only advice I have is that we really stuck to it. We never gave in.” – Holly Larsen, Mom who helped her daughter recover from Autism


Helpful Links

D.A.N. – Defeat Autism Now

Body Ecology Diet

GAPS Diets

ABA – Applied Behavior Analysis

BEDROCK Community



About Michael and Holly Larsen

(Left to right) Michael, Thea, Tula, Holly

Michael Larsen and his wife, Holly, are parents to twin daughters. One of their daughters, Tula, was diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder at age three. By focusing on their daughter’s gut health, they were able to recover Tula from autism. Today Tula enjoys a happy, healthy, normal life and Michael and Holly put their efforts into sharing their story so other parents may consider similar approaches to helping their children. In 2009, Michael and Holly founded a company that produces coconut kefir and strive to make healthy fermented foods readily available to people who are serious about their gut health. Holly is currently authoring a book that details their story. Learn more at Tulasstorry.wordpress.com


Tuning in With Kids’ Digestive Health: Stress, Food & Pathogens :009

Your Kids’ Digestive Health…

Is it related to the Environment, Food, Emotions or Pathogens?


Dealing with digestive issues can be challenging for anyone, but especially for and with kids.


In this episode Dr. Rory, a Chiropractor and Functional Medicine practitioner in the Minneapolis area, shares how he works with kids and what he looks for when dealing with them and their digestive issues.


When it comes to tracking down the causes of digestive issues the path is sometimes linear and sometimes more circuitous. When working with adults there are simply patterns in our society that lead a Functional Medicine practitioner to go down a list of likely culprits to digestive upset- but this is not so much the case with kids.


For example, a typical check-list might look like this:

  1. Exercise
  2. Stress
  3. Food intolerance: milk, cheese and/or gluten
  4. Pathogens/infection


When it comes to kids, because they are more “pure” so-to-speak, their bodies may react much more purely and readily to an environmental or emotional stressor. This means that this category may actually be at the top of the list of their primary cause of symptoms.


A Holistic Health Practitioner can help to take an overall perspective and help your family find solutions.



Tuning-in with Kids' Digestive Health with Dr. Rory


I asked Dr. Rory: How does Functional Medicine training help you help kids more with Gastro-Intestinal issues?

He said that the Functional Medicine training helps him be more aware of many facets:

  • To use/see the above mention factors: exercise, stress, food, pathogens
  • To use history and lab tests- especially for GI issues



Dr. Rory also illustrates that Gastro-intestinal and digestive issues are specific to each person: for some it may be stress-related and other food-related, even if two people are expressing the same symptoms.


This leads us to talk about archetypes, how we are each different and have intrinsic rhythms to our bodies that vary from one to another. He relates this to kids with metaphors of animals like the rabbit and turtle. do you tend to get exhausted easily or are you more of a sleepy person?


This is a great way to introduce Body-typing, which if you have followed my earlier material you know, I love and it’s the foundation of my book You-niversal Self-care: Improving Health Through Self-Understanding



It’s helpful to know “your type” and “your story” to help understand how to manage your health- at any age!



9 Ways to Alleviate Digestive Issues

In closing we put together a list of things that can easily help digestive issues. Note that not all these recommendations may be suitable for children. Consult your trusted health practitioner before implementing anything new, especially if symptoms are acute (sudden and highly reactive) or persistent i.e. chronic.

Tara offers:

  • Therapeutic grade peppermint oil rubbed on tummy
  • Exercise- a simple walk can help greatly! Or, with small children gently move legs in a cycling motion bringing legs close to belly each time.
  • Simple, gentle twisting of the torso

Dr. Rory offers:

  • Get plenty of clean water
  • Magnesium – Helps draw water into the gut. Consult a knowledgeable practitioner to know which type of supplementation is right for you.
  • Enzymes – help digest, absorb, assimilate and move food easier. Can really make a difference! Most often, take after eating.
  • Adaptogens – Rhodiola, valerian … help calm the body (and helps GI issues when they are stress related) and aids sleep
  • Amino-acids for gut and sleep can really help
  • Pro-biotics and pre-biotics can help with specific conditions such as Autism. Parents have seen positive changes in mood by simply supplementing with probiotics that were specifically recommended by their health practitioner.


The show notes are just a summary for your convenience.

The podcasts, are much more interesting… Listen and subscribe!  Enjoy!


About Rory Faherty, D.C.

Dr. Rory is a chiropractor, and functional medicine physician with two decades of experience connecting with patients, and helping them find their journey to health.    Rory grew up on a small island off the west coast of Ireland in a large family.  Life on the Aran Islands is simple and about connection with people.  He brings the values and lifestyle he learned in Ireland to his practice and approaches to treating patients.
Dr. Rory earned a Doctor of Chiropractic at Northwestern Health Sciences University and will complete The Institute for Functional Medicine’s (IFM) Certification program in 2016 to join the less than 20 IFM Certified Practitioners in the state of Minnesota.  Dr. Rory takes the complex world of medicine and creates simplistic plans for healing.
To contact Dr. Rory call  his office: 952-474-2395
Specialties include:
* GI Health with a focus on
     * diagnostics
     * gluten sensitivity 
     * treating infection
     * improving microbiome, 
     * customized food plans
* Detoxification
* Chronic Inflammation
* Nervous system & sleep disregulation 
* Applied Kinesiology
* Spinal Adjustment and body work

Rory Faherty, D.C.

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Connecting Kids with Nature: 006

Connecting Kids with Nature Takes a Concerted Effort These Days.

A steward and guide to nature who can help make the connection between kids and nature are needed than ever these days. If you don’t have such a person in your area, our local Naturalist, Larry Wade, has created a wonderful guidebook for elementary aged students (and I must attest, as a big kid I enjoyed it very much too!) to connect with nature. Parents, teachers, fellow guides for the next generation… this is a wonderful tool!


The making of a Naturalist

Larry Wade is a Naturalist in the Minneapolis area and has taught for many years at local parks and in school programs.

In the beginning of our talk Larry described how he grew up in a rural area of Southern California in the 1950’s. Nature was his playground since, in those days, there was not much else to occupy a child. During his middle and high school years Larry admits he grew away from nature, but when it came time to go to college he found himself back at nature’s doorstep.

At around age 30 he found himself at a cross-roads; his marine biology career was taking off, but he knew this would conflict with raising a family. So, he made the decision to leave the marine biology, start a family, and moved to Minnesota.


Connecting Kids with Nature:006


Outdoor Activities for Autumn

Larry describes an activity he does with 2nd and 3rd grade students during the fall (which is also clearly outlined in his workbook) called “Grasshopper Studies”.

He describes how this activity helps kids learn a number of things from grasshopper species diversity, grasshopper care and even empathy for such critters. The grasshoppers are collected and released within a week’s time.


“Writing creates empathy.” – Larry Wade, The Old Naturalist  

(See “My Life as an Oak” exercise in the Nature Seeker Workbook)

More Nature Activity Ideas for Kids

Animal homes activity gets kids out on a full-day event to identify…. that’s right… animal homes! Exercises include a nature hike (which doubles as Physical Education activity), a pond study, tree aging identification (math activity) and an art activity using the pigments found in nature. Larry says that the kids (and he) are so full of the expansiveness of nature at the end of the day that the school walls can barely contain the group upon their return.

Whale Day is a special day dedicated to Larry’s early passion of marine life. It includes art activities with his friend and workbook illustrator Jeannette Dickinson (and Amelia Ladd), his shell lab activities and respectful squid dissection.

The workbook is full of many other activities all centered around helping children learn about nature…

Many exercises involve other learning skills such as math, writing and more. There are activities for each season. Even if you do not live in the Upper Midwest region where much of the exercise are geared towards, this workbook can be an excellent guide to adapt the lessons for your region.

Other topics covered:

Larry’s adventures in snorkeling in local Minnehaha Creek – and his encounter with a Pike and a four-foot Muskie – it’s quite a “Fish Story”!

Hear him recount poetic experiences snorkeling among lily pads.

Kids are not the only ones affected by nature. Larry has also taken senior groups with Alzheimers Disease  into nature, he says, “You can feel their hearts remembering!”

“It’s about connection.” – Larry Wade, The Old Naturalist



In closing I ask guests to share 2 things that can help listeners improve their health with their subject material.

Larry and I agreed that connecting with nature plays a vital role in helping us improve our health. He suggests:

  • When you are out walking your dog (if you have one, of course!), Take time to be present. Don’t bring the phone, don’t think about work. Try to listen – with your whole body. Listen to the trees. Slow down.
  • For the kids, it depends on what age they are… Go to a park and let them run through the forrest- that’s great exercise! Then guide them, even if it’s just for ten minutes, to take some quiet time to draw or say, “Let’s try to write some poetry.” Of course, this all depends on the age of the child.



Other Links and Resources

If any part of this material interests you I highly recommend you check out Larry’s website. There he posts about his adventures underwater, recent activities he’s done with kids and some truly special audio clips of animal and nature sounds!

Larry’s website – The Old Naturalist: A voice for the earth- honoring life and seeking beauty

You can find his Nature Seeker Workbook here and at Amazon.com

Finding Balance in Nature – A gift from Larry… a PDF of great ideas!

About Larry

My name is Larry Wade, and I’ve had a passionate affair with the Planet Earth for most of my life. I have a deep and abiding respect for this amazing rock-and-water covered sphere where life expresses itself in millions of different forms, and in a set of interconnected systems.

I also have deep concerns about how we are treating our home. We have a lot of work to do to preserve the beauty and and living things on our planet.

One of the reasons why I continue this blog is my desire to help readers develop a relationship with the Earth. My personal mission can be summed up:


A Voice for the Earth.
Honoring Life and Seeking Beauty
Connecting, Learning, Healing
Earth First.

It’s my hope that you’ll find something in here–words, pictures, activities, poetry, something–that will stir something deep inside you and make you want to get outside. Take a walk. Look up. Look down. Listen. Close your eyes. Get dirty. Get wet. Re-introduce yourself to this amazing place we too often take for granted. Fall in love with Nature. Pass that love along to someone else–especially a child.

And let me know what you find.

Larry Wade
The Old Naturalist



Connecting Kids with Nature - Larry Wade - The Old Naturalist