day 2 with the visiting voyagers went like a banjo out of the asheville hills. bright and soulful. the clan came bearing gifts of spring rolls, Xtratuff boots, and rogue knowledge about simple living. how could i be disappointed?

so much wisdom studying babies, kids.

back home in maine, the fractal farmer family founded an anti-school preschool. kids gather and wander the woods. undercover moss, streams, wild things. hope for hippie parents to reinvent the world we’ve grown weary of. understandably, the forest school is wildly popular. completely free, based on parent leadership and utilizing public spaces, the meet-up model “school” builds community—the prerequisite for any successful organization. kids play, parents chat. boom. a multi-generational mycelium network. mycelium, if you weren’t sure, is the vegetative part of a fungus—consisting of a network of fine white filaments (hyphae).

the old model is no longer working. on soo many levels.

the diary is about welcoming, instigating change. nearly all my massage clients are women. it’s a curious fact that either men are so shy of touch or they’re averse to male-male massage. but i guess its not that curious. i keep telling myself i should try offering the hug arms instead of the handshake when i meet or part from people. but the impersonal hand still moves first.

my dad is studying cold water swimming. endorphin dynamite. he said i should take a break from the i-me-my and write about ellie. wise words, so here are some observations.

she nuzzles nose into shoulder when she’s tired.

when she’s really tired she laughs from her belly.

when she’s really really tired she opens her mouth and like a melting dali clock she cries and only mom can sooth.

she likes to be rocked to sleep on the orange chair, chest to chest. mom or dad suffice for this task.

her favorite toys—judged by the duration of in-the-mouth time—are the plastic Nutritional Yeast container, the spray bottle filled with water and lavender we squirt the dog with as quickly as possible following his behavioral errors. but by far, her favorite play accessories are her own two hands. my god.

the baby’s now proficient at holding her own toothbrush and mimicking mom's sudsy scrub motions. each morning and night.

lastly, when she’s on the verge of tears (and this is an alt dad original) take her to the blue wall next to the bathroom and slap your palm against the wall. take her close enough that she can slap too. wall slap, wall slap, wall slap. then tap her foot and say baby foot. slap the wall again and say wall. tap her belly and say baby belly. continue on like this all over the body until she laughs, and then keep going until the laughter stops and the slap happy baby commences crying and then moan mahhhhhhhhhhhhm.


#altdad #diary #amwriting #baby #wisdom #observations #preschool #school #alternative #outdoored #wild #woods #getdirty #explore #boycottwalmart #socialskillsimproving


<<<If you support hugging trees, open up and love The Alt Dad Diary at All contributions keep me from contemplating a buzzard-like existence as a needle-nose attorney for The Man.