About / Contact

DSC_0296Hello and welcome! I’m Lauren, a freelance writer, frequent contributor to The Washington Posts On Parenting Newsletter, blogger, and stay-at-home mama who enjoys photography, gardening, cooking and eating good food, and exploring nature through the eyes of our children. Andrew, my amazing and handsome husband, is a professor who enjoys playing music, flying through the air on the flying trapeze, and exploring the great outdoors. He is my best friend and my better half (and he is also responsible for most of the awesome music posts on this blog). Together we are raising three rambunctious, sweet little boys: Milo, Oliver, and Emil, and embracing alternative education in the form of Montessori. I enjoy pushing the envelope and challenging the status quo, especially when it comes to parenting and education.

We started Crumbbums in 2007 when our first baby boy was born as a way to stay in touch with far-flung family and friends. Over the years we have lived in Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Washington DC before settling down in St. Louis in 2011. We have finally found our niche here in the great city of St. Louis and thoroughly enjoy exploring the local arts and music (and coffee) scene.


Join us as we explore our city, find joy in parenting, discover delicious recipes, share our favorite books and music, and try to keep our sense of style (and humor)!

As of October 2016, I have also been blogging over at Montessori-Blog.org, where I post about Montessori lessons, parenting advice, and document the everyday wonders of the AMI-accredited St. Louis-based Montessori school, Villa di Maria. Be sure to follow along!

As with anything, please respect that all photography is property of Crumbbums unless otherwise indicated. Please give credit where credit is due!


photo credit: Unplugged Nation

Also, be sure to check out the television show we filmed in June 2014, Unplugged Nation — Idaho Idyll, which originally aired on September 26, 2015 on FYI.  It was a fantastic experience and one we will never forget!



Please leave a comment — some of the most meaningful online conversations can be started through these threads. I will try to respond to your questions throughout, but if you would rather contact me directly, please email me: lauren {dot} knight9 {at} gmail {dot} com. I’d be thrilled to hear from you!

Guest Posts

Hither & Thither // Bathroom Remodel: A Timeless Mix (December 20, 2016)

Hither & Thither // Dress That Mama Interview (July 14, 2016)

The Ma Books // A Week’s Wardrobe (March 18, 2015)

Hither and Thither // 5 THINGS: A Travel Guide to St. Louis (December 17, 2014)

The Ma Books // A Week’s Wardrobe (October 19, 2014)

Our Buzzards // Wabi Sabi / 02 (March 11, 2014)

Cinnamon Girl // First Friday (June 7, 2013)

Slow Mama // The Great Toy Purge (October 31, 2012); Incorporating Kids’ Toys into Your Decor (November 7, 2012)

Branch and Vine // Healthy Snacks for Kids (January 23, 2012)

Online Articles

The Washington Post: How parents can find patience and empathy, even in a moment of frustration (June 5, 2017)

The Washington Post: Why we need to give our kids the gift of accountability (November 30, 2016)

The Washington Post: 10 ways to help kids fall in love with being outside (April 20, 2016), in print (April 21, 2016)

The Washington Post: Why kids should go barefoot more (and probably adults, too) (February 29, 2016)

The Washington Post: The question of homework: should our kids have it at all? (February 24, 2016)

The Washington Post: The lessons I learned trying to teach my child generosity (November 23, 2015)

The Washington Post: Why it’s good to have a strong-willed child, and why you should let up on them (November 9, 2015)


The Washington Post: “Everyone’s a winner” and other lies (September 1, 2015)

The Washington Post: Talking to boys about puberty (August 28, 2015)

The Washington Post: 5 Ways to increase cooperation, decrease competition among siblings (July 19, 2015)

The Washington Post: How to teach your children the art of happiness (May 8, 2015)

The Washington Post: The time I was accused of child abuse (April 23, 2015)

The Washington Post: What we’re reading: Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt (April 22, 2015)

The Washington Post: Why one needs the other: ‘Two’ by Melissa Ann Pinney (April 17, 2015)

The Washington Post: What we’re reading: The Iridescence of Birds: A Book about Henri Matisse (March 27, 2015)

The Washington Post: Why curiosity is important for parents, too (March 24, 2015)

The Washington Post:  Why you should stop giving your kid a bath every night (February 26, 2015)

The Washington Post: 5 ways to let a little more risk into your child’s day (and why it matters) (January 16, 2015)

The Washington Post: 10 Indoor Activities to get you through Winter (January 8, 2015)

The Washington Post: 5 Great Books (and Gifts) For Kids (December 11, 2014)

The Washington Post: 5 Things I’ve Learned About Raising Boys (So Far) (November 12, 2014)


The Washington Post: Why We’re Saying No to Extra-Curriculars (November 3, 2014)

The Washington Post: What We’re Reading for Halloween: The Dark (October 23, 2014)

St. Louis Family Magazine: St. Louis’ Top Five Parks for Kids (October 24, 2014)


The Washington Post: 10 Ways to Get Your Kids out in Nature, and Why it Matters (October 21, 2014)

St. Louis Family Magazine: Haircuts at Home (October 2, 2014)

The Washington Post: With Kids off at School, How I Answer “So what do you do all day?” (September 23, 2014), also in print

The Washington Post: What We’re Reading: Rosie Revere, Engineer (September 16, 2014)

The Washington Post: What We’re Reading: Frog and Toad (September 3, 2014)

The Washington Post: How I Learned to be a more Mindful Parent (August 26, 2014)


Photo Credit: St. Louis Family Magazine — Kevin A. Roberts

St. Louis Family Magazine: On Her Way: Grace’s Bus Stop (March 21, 2014)

32 thoughts on “About / Contact”
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  1. Hello !
    I’ve just discovered your blog and something or someone caught my attention. Your little Emil ! It’s very rare to meet someone with that name and i didn’t know it was used by enghlish speakers. anyway, your little one made me think of my little Émile born just a few months before yours. They look so alike… Little comedian we call ours…
    Your other kids, well your entire family looks adorable.
    Bye bye

  2. I have been following this blog (daily) for months. I’m a new mom to a 10 month year old and I just love your family posts… and your dress this mama posts… thanks so much for sharing your bountiful life with … the world 🙂 It’s truly a pleasure to have my morning coffee with crumbbums!

  3. Lauren, I have been following your blog for a while because a mutual friend sent me your way. I also live in St. Louis and actually often see you and the boys around town. I’d love to connect with you via email, if you are willing!

  4. Hi Lauren,

    Just came across your blog today — I love it! Can’t find your email address to contact you directly but I have a fun opportunity you may enjoy — I’d love to discuss if you have time?

    Thank you,


  5. Hi there.

    I’ve been meaning to write for awhile and tell you how much I enjoy your blog! I found your blog about a year ago by your post ‘Simplifying: How to Pare Down Your Wardrobe (And Buy Thoughtfully)’ (I think via a comment to that post on Girls Gone Child), which was not long after listening to the below NPR interview:

    The interview and your blog post (which I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read), in conjunction with devouring minimalist sites (and books!) such as missminimalist.com, zenhabits.net, and the minimalists.com has drastically helped my family and I begin de-cluttering and living a more meaningful and intentional life (what a great adventure!).

    We are currently a family of three, about to become a family of four sometime November, and have been taking a Montessori and Charlotte Mason approach with our toddler daughter, and loving it.. so I have super enjoyed your Montessori Inspired, parenting, and nature posts as well!

    I felt it appropriate to finally – since I have been stalking your site for at least a year now, have shared many of your posts with friends over that year, and utilized many of the references you’ve shared on your site – write to officially say hello, and thank you!

    Nice to ‘meet’ you!

  6. Harley, wow. I am so humbled by your kind words! Thank you so much for taking the time to comment. It is so heartwarming to know that you are enjoying and sharing! Nice to meet you too!

  7. Hello, I just read your article I. The Washington post. Great article. I run a program called nature rocks which was started by richard Louv and a few others including The Nature Conservancy where I work. Anyway, your article captures the goal of our program. I wonder if you might help spread the word about our program and/or consider guest blogging for us. Do let me know. You are a lovely writer!

  8. Hi there, I want to tweet a link to your Washington Post article 5 Ways to let a Little More Risk into Your Child’s Day…do you have a twitter handle I can include, to give you credit?

  9. Hi Lauren,

    A piece appeared in The Argus newspaper, which is daily in Cape Town South Africa. I really enjoyed your thoughts under the article titled, The Art of Happiness – Teaching kids how to be happy should be a priority. I realise that this wasn’t written specifically for the readership of our local newspaper but your views were insightful and inspiring. And they ring home the truth about what most of us want for our children. I have 12 year old boy/girl twins and I feel that I have been partially successful in instilling what you view as the basic foundations for happiness but as most parents I’m sure feel too, guidance on this journey is always of interest. But in the case of your newspaper piece, seldom as engaging. Thank you. Warm regards, Sebastian

  10. Lauren, very good article on kids and adults going barefoot – from a 67-year-old who’s done so as much as possible throughout her life. Given how high the proprioceptive benefits are – gave me extremely good balance for gymnastics, speedskating, skiing, etc. – do you know if there’s any research about utility at the other end of life?
    e.g., Because seniors have so many balance issues, should they be encouraged to go barefoot, say at least at home, unless there’s a vital reason for them to wear heavy-duty “senior shoes?” There are so many “Matter of Balance” initiative around the country aimed at promoting better senior balanc – should this be considered as a component? Would appreciate hearing if you know of research, etc.

  11. Thank you, Diane, for your thoughtful comment! I am so glad you enjoyed the article. I haven’t done much research about going barefoot later in life; however, I imagine there are plenty of benefits. I believe that it is very important to do so from a young age in order to build up those muscles for the rest of life, and there is probably a benefit (just as there is a benefit to starting an exercise routine and building muscle at any age) to doing so starting later. The human body is quite amazing!

  12. Hi Lauren! I just came across your “DIY Fun: Giant Ice Cube Awesomeness” post. I write for theloop.ca and I’m currently working on a piece called “How to have fun and keep kids cool when it’s stinkin’ hot”. I was wondering if I could feature your ice activity on the list, with one of your photos? You did a fantastic job documenting it. I would of course link back to your post. Let me know, thanks!

  13. Hi Lauren,
    Long time reader, thanks for coming back! I read your music post this week – I have recently become fond of Andy Shauf- he is touring! I recently purchased a ticket for his Asheville show. I’m not sure how helpful this will be – or if you will receive this note- but hopefully you will get a chance to see him! best, akh

  14. I love your article on the strong-willed Child, on November 9, 2015. My daughter was the same way, extraordinarily obstinant and caring as well. There is a terrific book that came out in December 2015 on Amazon about kids having the right to be free, to be obstinate, and to live by the boundaries of freedom in the household. I would love it, Lauren, if you reviewed this book for this site and or the Washington Post — or at least use the book as a springboard for conversation or an article on the rights of kids. https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/1522860940/ref=mp_s_a_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1487446607&sr=8-1&pi=AC_SX236_SY340_QL65&keywords=children+have+rights&dpPl=1&dpID=51Ciy3JE2lL&ref=plSrch

  15. There is little information on the web regarding the MAP school in the Grand Arts district in St Louis. Would you care to update that? I am asking because I am considering a move to MAP for my 8th grader for the 2017/18 school year.

    1. Hi Robert! I am so glad you are considering MAP – I’ve continued to hear great things about it. I will email you the Head of School contact in addition to two other contacts for the school. Thanks for reaching out!

  16. Hey, I’d love it if you did a piece on Online Montessori Certification programs like http://www.montessorilive.org. Nonprofits like it are doing such an incredible service to the global Montessori community by making it convenient and affordable for educators all across the world to become lead certified Montessori teachers. Thanks for everything that you’ve written thus far!

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