Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens? Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens? Brown paper packages tied up with strings? Actually, none of those are a few of my favorite things. But here are Who’s Your Daddy’s family-friendly most fabulous!
Best way to spend a rainy day: The Natural History Museum of Utah. The museum really is impressive. Where else can kids of all ages learn about the five native nations of Utah, hold a hissing cockroach and dig for dinosaur bones? Stop by the Utah Museum of Fine Arts and Red Butte Gardens to make a day of it. (Someone at the U really needs to listen to my idea for a three-in-one membership!)
Best “chain” restaurant: Chipotle. If including organic and locally-grown ingredients wasn’t enough, Utah’s Chipotle restaurants pulled out of a big scouting event over the BSA’s ban on gay scouts and leaders. Plus, last time I ordered a beer they asked for my ID.
Best school: Saint Sophia Hellenic Orthodox School. Even more impressive than small class sizes and great test scores is the fact that kids of every race, religion and ability are celebrated, nurtured and embraced for who they are. LGBT families are welcomed with open arms.
Best lazy summer day destination: Liberty Park. Whether it’s playing in the water feature, cruising around the lake in a paddle boat, or seeing the amazing birds at Tracy Aviary there’s no better way to spend a summer day. Be sure to enjoy the rides in the mini amusement park – the boys and I love the vintage Ferris wheel!
Best show of courage: Tory Lawson. So Tory’s aunt used to be married to my brother, which makes him my nephew as far as I’m concerned. But he was born my niece. Recently, he started the transformation into the man he was supposed to be. His bravery and courage are inspiring.
Best family hike: Lisa Falls. Only about 2.5 miles up the mouth of Little Cottonwood Canyon, this is a super easy hike for all ages leading to a beautiful waterfall. Enjoy the shade, the water and being in nature. But keep an eye out: Last year the boys and their cousins saw a big old rattlesnake.
Best friend to LGBT community and our families: Bob Henline. My dear friend and fellow columnist, Bob, is an unwavering, in-your-face advocate for equality. He’s always the first one on the front line and never backs down. He’s a much better gay man than I could ever be. Love you, pumpkin!
Best pizza: Settebello. Amazingly authentic, the pizzas are cooked in a 1000-degree wood burning oven and only take about a minute to cook. The salads are so good even finicky young eaters will snarf them down. And be sure to step next door for some mouth-watering dessert at Capo Gelateria!
Best Republican: Steve Urquhart. Yeah, me recognizing a Republican is pretty far out there. But Sen. Urquhart bucked his party and the Eagle Forum to sponsor a statewide anti-bias bill. Way to go, Senator!
Best according to Gus and Niko: Antelope Island State Park. With beaches, grasslands and mountain trails, there’s plenty to explore on the island. Just a quick drive across the causeway from Syracuse, the island is home to bison, pronghorn sheep (antelope), deer, big horn sheep, jack rabbits, coyotes and thousands of birds. It’s a great place to spend a day getting in touch with nature. The boys deem it awesome.
I’d like to dedicate this column to our wonderful friend, Carol Harmon, who passed away in early April. She was simply the best.