We love to be outside in this family. Discovering, exploring, and just taking in nature is a huge part of our life whenever possible. A few weekends ago we took a drive out to the Lost Dutchman Gold Trail for a long over-due hike. We had thought about taking the metal detector for a bit of extra fun, but with a 1 year old, a 2 year old, and 3 dogs, it was a bit much to carry. Now, this is the perfect time of year to hike in AZ since now is when the wild flowers bloom, the weather is brisk and not overly hot, and the snakes haven't fully come out of hibernation yet (but you still have to keep an eye out because they are starting to wake from their slumber). So, we headed out on the trail.
We loaded the baby in the hiking pack and debated loading up the 2 year old. We decided to let her hike with us for the first time instead of carrying her on the trail. The dogs were leashed up to start and the backpack put on the hubby and we started up the trail. We didn't make it far before a little voice said, "Mommy, pocket". As we went along the trail both my and my husbands pockets became heavier with rocks that my daughter deemed interesting and felt she needed to take home. She has always picked up and had an interest in rocks, but as I watched her on the trail I noticed she really studied them as she picked them up, making sure to feel them and investigate them. Naturally, their were a few that we didn't stick in our pockets as they were too large and being my husbands daughter she naturally would try to lift the heaviest rocks.
We saw some of the most beautiful Arizona Yellow Poppy's on our hike and some amazing purple flowers (I think they are called Lupines). My daughter was more interested in pulling them apart, but was very delicate with the rocks which cracks me up since often people have the opposite reaction. It reminds me that sometimes the things we treat with kid gloves cause us to over look the delicacy and beauty of other things. While the hike takes a lot out of my husband and I with the literal weight and balancing of kids, dogs, and supplies it requires we all get to enjoy different aspects bonding us as a family.
What is your families bonding activity? Maybe you should look for a hike in your area and see what you can discover together, maybe it will be each other.