. . . we took a hike.
It was sunny and warm– in the 50s, if you can believe it on the 28th of December– so we went for a hike at Borderland State Park. It’s not far away, but we’d never been there before. Never even heard of it. We just knew we needed to take advantage of the fine weather and get the kids and us out of the house and into the fresh air.
We meant to get up and get an early start, but our lack of sleep on Christmas Eve caught up to us and we slept in. So instead we went out for lunch and then went for a hike after lunch. It was a long one, more than three miles around the pond. The trail was level and pretty easy, though too many tree branches for a stroller to be able to do it.
I carried Lucy on my back. She spent the first few minutes screaming at me: “I don’t wanna piggyback! I don’t wanna piggyback!” Then by the time we got to the pond itself, she was distracted by the landscape, the dogs, other hikers, whatever. Eventually she passed out and took a nap, as I’d hoped she would.
The hike was not, of course, without complaints. Dom and I checked them off our mental checklist as they came up: the inevitable whines: I’m tired. I want to sit down. I need to use the bathroom. I’m hungry. (Even though we just had lunch!) And it was a very long way for little legs to walk. But when they got too whiny there was always a rock to climb or a log, or a bird or a plant to look at, or water to be poked at with a stick. The hike took about two hours all told.
Not a lot of wildlife to look at this time of year, but we did identify oak leaves and pine trees, examined several types of fungus.
In the woods, I feel more alive, more able to breathe. I forget about the house and the chores and just live in the moment. We need to do this more often.