This season has been all about the learning for me.  Summer months filled with sights, sounds, and experiences to file away…bits of knowledge that may or may not be useful at some future point.  You know…stuff.

Like our recycling program.  They pick up our bins every other week, but it’s run by the same company that handles trash disposal.  Now I can’t help wondering if the whole thing is BS & everything ends up in the landfill after all.

And Roombas, those automated pods that toodle around vacuuming your floor?  They’re designed to pick up debris and programmed to change directions, but in a huge design oversight they don’t immediately come to a halt if they run over, say, cat feces.  (True story.)

Now, for your reading pleasure, some of the random bits and pieces I’ve tucked away this summer.

Summer 2017: a pocketful of tidbits

**  In an attempt to ensure their own bloodline, male grizzlies kill other grizzlies’ cubs. On a side note, the big bad grizzlies are afraid of cars.  So the mama bears have to decide – risk grizzly attacks deep in the woods or being hit by a car while staying close to the road.

**  Bear will indeed try anything as long as I haven’t actually cooked it: sweet potato strips, steamed broccoli, homemade mac & cheese, chicken curry with snow peas…all foods Bear has literally put into her mouth, chewed, and swallowed.  Maybe I need to start cooking dinner in disguise.  Or hire a personal chef.

**  I’ve made it into August without getting sunburned this summer – all hail the power of sunscreen.  My family can’t say the same – all hail the lessons of personal responsibility.

**  Apparently a 2,000 pound bison can, given the proper motivation, jump a fence.  Wait, let me say that again: Bison. Can. Jump. A. Fence.  These massive animals lumber along, looking all hairy and immovable, but a good fire can run them air bound.  The thought of one mid-air is, frankly, inconceivable.

**  Acrylic nails are the devil.  Acrylic nails on a tween who wouldn’t listen when told they were a bad idea are the devil on steroids.

**  Jackson, Wyoming has the only U.S. airport located in a national park.  Also, landing there looks like you’re flying into a mountain.

**  Doggy Day Care wears a dog out.

**  The ability to download Netflix shows and movies is a traveling parent’s sanity saver.

**  White water rafting sounds like an exciting adventure careening down a (semi-) raging river.  Turns out there’s a whole upper body workout involved, what with the intense paddling and core work to keep from being thrown from the raft.

**  Not all pull out sofas are created equal.

**  Don’t pick the flowers in a national park.

**  My kids don’t recognize the smell of pot.  BrightSide does.  And apparently T-man and Bear are old enough to debate the merits of legalizing marijuana.  Good times.