Before summer break I made a goal to get us in the mountains every week until school began again at the end of August. I’m happy to announce that I achieved my goal.
Here are some of the reasons this was so important to me:
- We truly live in a most beautiful place. We are blessed to have mountains and waterfalls and lakes and forests and we should take advantage of them. People travel from all over the world to visit our state and too often we don’t explore it enough ourselves.
- I once read the fantastic and fascinating book “Last Child in the Woods: Saving our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder” and it really affected me. I know that getting my children (and myself) into nature positively and dramatically improves our overall mental and physical health. I see it with my own eyes and feel it with my own body.
- It’s monetarily free, stress free, and doesn’t need much planning. Just pack snacks and sunscreen and go!
- I’m not a fan of entertaining my children. I am a big fan of my children entertaining themselves. An easy way for this to happen is to let them roam and explore and empower themselves outside. They discover and learn and never ask me what they can do or tell me that they are bored. I can actually see their brains rapidly firing neurons.
- I have good memories of my parents loading us in the car and driving to some random natural setting to play. All they had to do was find somewhere without a fence and us kids would do the rest. I wanted to give my own kids those same kinds of good memories.
- Rob and I think it’s important to make sure our kids are comfortable and confident participating in active, outdoor play which will lead to wanting to try more things as they get older (snowboarding, hiking, rock climbing, canoeing, etc.) It’s so fun and we live in the perfect environment for it!
- Nate is our scientist and knows more facts about geology, meteorology, biology, and entomology than anyone. He loves sharing his knowledge with us and seeing it all first hand when we are on one of our expeditions.
- I call Caroline my little monkey because she is so quick and flexible and balanced. She never wants any help climbing over rocks and through streams. This gives her the vestibular sensory input her body craves.
- Before this summer Madeleine HATED walking anywhere. She would moan and complain walking a block up the hill to school. Fast forward to Labor Day and she hiked up to Timpanogos Cave like a champ! So proud of her!