I Brake for Moms

Extensive safety measures at the Woodland Park Zoo include markers that help keep you 6 feet apart. (Jennifer Bardsley)

Safety measures at the zoo help you forget about COVID-19

The Woodland Park Zoo limits capacity to 150 guests at a time, and you need reservations to enter.

Extensive safety measures at the Woodland Park Zoo include markers that help keep you 6 feet apart. (Jennifer Bardsley)
From tea parties to dumpsters, 2020 has redefined suburban living. (Jennifer Bardsley)

2020 may be a dumpster fire, but it made her appreciate dumpsters

This mom sticks to her chore chart, but it’s not enough — not when the house is lived in, with a capital L.

From tea parties to dumpsters, 2020 has redefined suburban living. (Jennifer Bardsley)
When it comes to flocked Christmas trees, everyone has strong opinions. (Jennifer Bardsley)

We need a little Christmas — no, make that a lot

It doesn’t matter if your tree is real or fake, pure or flocked. It just needs to fill your home with joy.

When it comes to flocked Christmas trees, everyone has strong opinions. (Jennifer Bardsley)
"Bookstagramming," the hobby of taking pictures of books and posting them on Instagram, is one of many activities that combat boredom during the pandemic. (Jennifer Bardsley)

Have you adopted odd enteratinment habits because of COVID-19?

Unloading the dishwasher can be fun — but mostly because fun is hard to come by during a pandemic.

"Bookstagramming," the hobby of taking pictures of books and posting them on Instagram, is one of many activities that combat boredom during the pandemic. (Jennifer Bardsley)
Apples, coffee, cozy sweaters and other ways to turn your mood around with November stress weighs you down. (Jennifer Bardsley)

Simple ways to add comfort to your day in stressful times

Stressed out? Give this rule of threes a try: Make it healthy, affordable and environmentally friendly.

Apples, coffee, cozy sweaters and other ways to turn your mood around with November stress weighs you down. (Jennifer Bardsley)
Washington Virtual Academy, a free public school option in Washington state, sends out kits of materials to help supplement online learning. Pictured here is the sixth-grade kit. (Jennifer Bardsley)

For some kids, virtual schooling is actually an improvement

Her daughter needed a tutor to stay at grade level, but now she’s excelling with at-home instruction.

Washington Virtual Academy, a free public school option in Washington state, sends out kits of materials to help supplement online learning. Pictured here is the sixth-grade kit. (Jennifer Bardsley)
Vaccines promise health — and fun — for a family tired of social distancing. (Jennifer Bardsley)

COVID-19 pandemic brings a new appreciation for flu shots

After not leaving the house for weeks, a drive-thu appointment to get an influenza vaccine is an adventure.

Vaccines promise health — and fun — for a family tired of social distancing. (Jennifer Bardsley)
When it comes to kitchen tables, it’s not the price or comfort level that matters — it’s the memories. (Jennifer Bardsley)

Kitchen table memories linger longer than coffee mug stains

The chairs may be uncomfortable, but this mom can’t bring herself to get rid of the set.

When it comes to kitchen tables, it’s not the price or comfort level that matters — it’s the memories. (Jennifer Bardsley)
Stocking a garage freezer with comfort food brings a busy family bliss. (Jennifer Bardsley)

Freezer-to-table meals a dream come true for this busy family

The pandemic has made chest freezers hot commodities right up there with Lysol wipes and toilet paper.

Stocking a garage freezer with comfort food brings a busy family bliss. (Jennifer Bardsley)
Which subject does your child struggle with most? Have them study that subject first thing in the morning, while they are still fresh. (Jennifer Bardsley)

How to manage distance learning like a pro in 7 easy steps

This mom sees the humor in trying to work from home and play teacher for her kids at Zoom school.

Which subject does your child struggle with most? Have them study that subject first thing in the morning, while they are still fresh. (Jennifer Bardsley)
A course of traffic-cone slaloms is one way to help teens improve their driving skills. (Jennifer Bardsley)

Her teen is putting pedal to the metal for accident avoidance

She signed the new driver up for an advanced collision avoidance class taught by Defensive Driving School.

A course of traffic-cone slaloms is one way to help teens improve their driving skills. (Jennifer Bardsley)
Workplace ergonomics become tricky while working from home, but simple changes can make a difference. (Jennifer Bardsley)

Work-at-home ergonomics might ‘B’ a problem for you, too

She ordered a laptop riser and an ergonomic keyboard to help ease constant pain from tennis elbow.

Workplace ergonomics become tricky while working from home, but simple changes can make a difference. (Jennifer Bardsley)
An open letter to my stalwart Dining Room Table

An open letter to my stalwart Dining Room Table

You were made for elegant dinner parties, but you’ve proved to be indispensable during pandemic times.

An open letter to my stalwart Dining Room Table
More than 4,000 indoor cyclists form the Peloton Pacific Northwest Facebook group, with members cheering each other on to good health and stress reduction during the pandemic. (Jennifer Bardsley)

Seeking a cardio high in the middle of a pandemic

Becoming a Peloton bike member is like joining a cult — but it’s a great way to manage stress.

More than 4,000 indoor cyclists form the Peloton Pacific Northwest Facebook group, with members cheering each other on to good health and stress reduction during the pandemic. (Jennifer Bardsley)
Your beach vacation is just a ferry ride away. (Jennifer Bardsley)

Day trip to Bainbridge Island offers reflection and relaxation

Their itinerary included stops at Fay Bainbridge Park and the Japanese American Exclusion Memorial.

Your beach vacation is just a ferry ride away. (Jennifer Bardsley)
Teaching son to drive knocks mom senseless — or sentenceless

Teaching son to drive knocks mom senseless — or sentenceless

When she’s in the passenger seat and trying to stay calm, she forgets how to speak. Is that normal?

Teaching son to drive knocks mom senseless — or sentenceless
It only takes a small amount of cash to build a homemade swamp cooler to make your home comfortable this summer. (Jennifer Bardsley)

Can a do-it-yourself swamp cooler beat the August heat?

Instead of spending $400 for an air conditioner, purchase $25 of simple parts and assemble one yourself.

It only takes a small amount of cash to build a homemade swamp cooler to make your home comfortable this summer. (Jennifer Bardsley)
Creative thinking, equity and pedagogy should lead discussions for the 2020-21 school year, not judgement and shame. (Jennifer Bardsley)

Back to school or home school: What’s a family to do?

Check out a list of publicly funded online homeschool programs available in Washington.

Creative thinking, equity and pedagogy should lead discussions for the 2020-21 school year, not judgement and shame. (Jennifer Bardsley)
DUMB

The good, the bad and the ugly, all in one camping trip

Two nights in the family tent trailer at Lake Easton State Park near Cle Elum wasn’t all they hoped.

DUMB
Keep masks on the kitchen counter next to your phone so you remember to grab one when you leave the house. (Jennifer Bardsley)

Household strategies to manage summer’s hottest new accessory

This mom lays out her plan to keep clean masks available to all four family members at all times.

Keep masks on the kitchen counter next to your phone so you remember to grab one when you leave the house. (Jennifer Bardsley)
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