Everyone says there are amazing hikes in this area, so I’ve been excited to check them all out. Hiking is one of my favorite pastimes; I feel such a sense of peace walking around the woods with just nature for company. I love the adventure of exploring what lies around the next bend, the feeling of using all my muscles to move, seeing all the beauty in the natural surroundings, and breathing in the fresh air.
However, hiking with children is a bit different than hiking alone or with friends. Whenever we begin a hike I have all these fabulously hopeful ideas in my mind about how our day will look. I envision the boys running ahead, frolicking in the mud and playing with sticks or rocks. They stop to explore an interesting plant or bug, then we all take a break for water and a snack at a lookout point where we marvel at the beauty of the world. Perhaps we might stop at a river to cool off on the way back and they splash and play and have a rock skipping contest.
Then there’s the reality; it doesn’t include frolicking. It does include screaming, whining, and beating each other with sticks. If they are splashing in the water it’s because someone pushed someone else in. If they stop to investigate a bug it’s to put it in their brother’s hair.
Can you imagine how my day actually went? That’s why I take pictures; you can’t hear the whining. But even with all the fussing, a day of hiking is better than a day spent indoors.