I really do love the outdoors but sometimes I let my homebody-ness get in the way of enjoying it. I want my children to appreciate and love the outdoors the way I do, so I'm making a bigger effort to get them out in it more often. Not just sending them in the backyard or taking them to the park, but going out to places where they can really explore. Explore and just breathe. I can thank my dad for my love of the outdoors. I have that great gift in my life because he took me on so many outdoor adventures to fish, hike, camp, canoe, etc. I know it's up to me to help my kids gain the same.
I have a fantastic backpack for Edith to ride in (I mean, I love it) and we have a canyon 1 mile from our house we can hike at, so I really have no real excuse not to get them out. It helps that Edith no longer beats me about the head whenever I stop moving. She has grown to love the backpack because she recognizes that it is a way for her to go higher and farther than she would be able to hike alone. She pushes me to continue on up the trail (it is all uphill on the way in) when I might let the other kids convince me to turn around, saying, "Higher! Higher! I want to go higher!" Thanks for helping me get a good workout, Edith. Getting my workout hiking up a hill with an extra 35 pounds of cuteness and pack on my back rather than in my living room using an exercise DVD? No contest.
I'm not quite sure what she saw in the first photo, but it makes me laugh.
I also realized that if I let Edith pick a few side explorations as we hike it makes her feel a little less powerless as she's strapped in the pack. The boys have really appreciated doing more of that, too, instead of feeling like we just need to stick to the trail. It makes it an exciting new adventure each time we go. It's so fun to see them scamper around with smiles on their faces as we look for a new adventure. Plus, Edith now knows that I'll always let her out at some point to do some climbing and hike for a bit. Knowing she's not going to be imprisoned forever helps.
You can tell the weather for our hikes has really varied.
I don't always get all of the kids to come along, but I feel okay with that. It's not a mandatory thing. If I let them take part when they want to they'll enjoy it more. And I think it's comforting to them to know that if they don't feel like going one day the offer will be there again soon. I'm trying to make sure that's the case, anyway.
The expression on Edith's face in this last photo seriously cracks me up. What a hoot.
We sure are having a lot of fun getting out this Spring. Hopefully we can fit in one more hike tomorrow before I get my gallbladder out on Tuesday morning. I'm not super happy about the interruption, but hopefully it won't ruin my momentum. Nope, I'm determined that it won't. Not at all. I love it too much.