Mama Gone Green is a blog dedicated to raising happy children and reducing our impact on the Earth. My name is Taryn and I am the mother of 2 young kids and an environmental studies instructor at a community college in Portland, Oregon. Please join me as I journey through life as a mama, teacher, knitter, photographer, gardener, and environmentalist!

Thursday, July 30, 2015


It has been a whirlwind summer over here... We have done a lot of traveling which has entailed lots of packing, unpacking, and moving around. We got home late last night from Austin, Texas, and although the trip was loads of fun, it feels fabulous to be home! Sleeping in my own bed was quite a treat!
Texas was hot, and we spent the days swimming and eating Mexican food. There may have been a margarita (or two) in there as well. We got to see a whole bunch of friends, make some new friends, and even found some moments to relax.
Texas was our last big excursion, at least until September, and I am excited to have a few weeks of summer that aren't moving at warp speed. We are supposed to go camping Saturday morning, and still may, but I am also tempted to just stay in Portland and enjoy some more simple days around the house. Adventures are so fun, but they can be exhausting too, and I think my kids and I all need to get onto more of a schedule.
Hoping that a calmer end-of-summer will allow me more time to blog and to read blogs--  I have missed hearing what you are all up to!

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Sunday, July 26, 2015


I haven't been on the blog at all lately... I have been out of town camping, seeing music, and spending time with friends. It has been amazingly wonderful. However, I feel that summer is just flying by, and I am trying to hold on to every second and make this special time slow down!

I have been so grateful for so many things these past few weeks. I would love to share a few of them with you now...

- For wonderful friends who are there to support me, listen to me, and encourage me.
- For the much needed rain that we finally  had in Portland today
- For eating from my garden... tomatoes, zucchini, basil pesto, blackberries, chard, and plums.
- For the many fun adventures I have been able to take this summer

Hope you are all enjoying your summer as well! I will be back to post some pictures soon.

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Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Yarn Along

Good morning! Joining with Ginny at Small Thing's for this week's Yarn Along .

I am still slowly working away at this sweater, which I am making for me! Actually, I haven't really been knitting lately. While we were in Chicago, I was just too busy and I unfortunately brought a terrible cough home from Chicago with me. It has been keeping me awake at night, and by the time I get in bed at night, knitting is nowhere near my radar. I am on day 7 of this, and fingers crossed it can't go on much longer. Summer sickness is the worst. I can't wait to feel like myself again!

I am currently reading Desert Solitaire and Welcome to the Monkey House, both books from my summer reading list. Neither one is quite what I had expected, and they are drastically different from each other, but I am appreciating them both in their own ways. I sort of think I am due for a really good mindless read soon though..... one that just sucks you in and makes you forget yourself for a couple of days. Those are the best.

What are you reading? What are you knitting?
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Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Oregon Country Fair

On Sunday, Phoebe and I spent the day at the Oregon Country Fair. I have been a few times in the past, but Phoebe had not (unless you count while she was in my belly), and I knew that she would be excited to experience the fair. There are people dressed in all sorts of costumes, music, parades, food and shopping. It just feels magical in the fair-- there is a special energy inside that you don't find most places.
We had a fun time but it was really crowded, and we got stuck in some serious traffic on the way home. I think that next year I will try and go for the day on Friday instead of Sunday.
I didn't get a chance to take too many photos, because I was wheeling a stroller through crowds, but here are a few that I did get:

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Monday, July 13, 2015

Blackberry Love

serve warm with ice cream. yum!
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Thursday, July 9, 2015

Sweet Home, Chicago

I've inadvertently taken quite a blogging break! At the end of June, the kids and I headed to the Chicago suburbs for 10 days to visit my family. The weather was surprisingly chilly, and while I had anticipated a vacation full of swimming, there ended up not being much of that at all. But, the kids spent a lot of time with their cousins and we did manage to do a whole bunch of stuff: an amusement park, the Brookfield zoo (with a college friend of mine and her sweet little son), family cookouts, a bonfire, The Shed Aquarium, a parade, a carnival, some fireworks, a free concert on the beach, and a lot of eating. I think I must have gained 10 pounds!
I even managed to meet up with a friend from high school that I haven't seen in over 15 years (!!) and I got to sneak away for 24 hours by myself in downtown Chicago. I strolled through Millennium Park, took myself to the Art Institute (a favorite stomping ground in my high school days), and ended the evening at the Grateful Dead Fare thee Well concert with a bunch of my favorite friends. The concert brought back a lot of memories (and emotions), and I feel really lucky to have had the chance to go.
As always, it's good to be back home and settling into a less adventurous routine (for now), but I already miss my family. 
Despite all of the fun I had, I took surprisingly few pictures (maybe because I was too busy having fun?), but here are a few....

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Wednesday, July 1, 2015


Last week one of my friends and I headed for a night of camping followed by a day at Breitenbush resort. We soaked in hot springs, lazed around reading, and went on a lovely hike. Since we didn't have our kids, we were distraction-free, and we were able to catch up on so much conversation.
It was an amazing little getaway, and once again reminded me how lucky I am to live in such a gorgeous place, and how lucky I am to have wonderful people in my life to share these experiences with.
And, as we talked about while camping, we of course love our kids dearly all of the time. But there is certainly something to be said about the overwhelming love a parent can feel for their child after not seeing them for a day or two.

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