Winter Hike

I went for a hike today on the wooded trails in Robinson Nature Center. I like the open feeling in the December woods. The sparse surroundings relieve my stress from the busy holiday season. There is less confusion and congestion and more simplicity and space in the bare woods. Only single sounds and single sights. No canopy of leafy trees to crowd me. A single bird song to listen to and try to memorize for later identification. Was it a “creekataw” or “creekachee”? A clear sound without competition. Easy to be mindful and slow down in this place. One crunching sound leads to one squirrel racing up and over a tree trunk on the ground. I could see the squirrel carrying a round orange colored object the size of its head in its mouth. I wondered if I could see where he would hide it. Less is hidden between the exposed trees and on the crunchy leaf covered ground. The evergreen trees stand unchanged and bold among the greys and browns. Everlasting and eternal things is where to focus. My stress melts when I do.

Outdoor Work and Play

wpid-img_20150525_144745266_hdr.jpg Several hot and dry days over the long Memorial Day weekend gave us a chance for outdoor work and play together. We finally stained our new deck. My 10 year old son was thrilled to paint with us. His constant chattering about his thoughts, feelings, school, Minecraft and best techniques to paint, made the work fun. I smiled when he told me his cure for his sore throat. He said, “Mama, my throat does not hurt anymore. I guess I just needed to ‘talk it off’, get it? Like ‘walk it off’.” He certainly did.wpid-img_20150526_163558458.jpg

Tuesday, my husband and I picked up our son from school and we all went to Patapsco State Park.  We walked/jogged on the Grist Mill Trail.  My son had to get close to the water, to feel it on his feet and make it splash with rocks and sticks.  My husband joined my son in stone skipping.  I never knew my husband could get a stone to hop on the water 4 times in one throw. My son begged to swim across the creek and climb a huge rock. It was bold for him to put his whole body into a murky creek filled with unknown critters.

When we explore and work in the outdoors together we discover more about nature, but even more about each other.