Summer is officially here bringing warmth to us all. The school year has ended, bringing the threat of looming boredom to our children. So bundle the family into the car and declare it vacation time. Turn the radio up loud enough to drown out the cries of "Are we there yet?"
But where is "there"? "There" might be the cottage, grandma's house, or the opposite side of the continent. "There" might be exotic or mundane, but it should be a change from the ordinary. Change is the key: Do something outside your regular routine.
One place to start might be any of Canada's mining or mineral museums. They come in all sizes, can be found in cities large and small, and are usually air-conditioned. Every child should be taught about the vast wealth minerals provide to this country; they don't learn such things without guidance.
Take a hike in the woods and hills. Explain something of the resources under their feet to your children. Recreate the story for them of the origin of the plants and animals, the landforms, the soil, and the bedrock. It's only boring to someone without imagination. Geological time and forces actually are mind-expanding.
Even a dip in the lake can be an opportunity to remind youngsters not to take clean water for granted. Tell them something of the effort industries (including mining companies) make to protect such recreational areas near their operations.
Take along one or more of your children's friends who might otherwise miss the opportunity to learn something of our natural riches.
And here is a final thought: Take the time to relax with your friends and family and soak up some of the balm that nature has to offer. You'll come back a better person.