Monday, August 22, 2011

Hiking #1

Last year, I had great intentions of making nature hikes a priority. However, our school year last year felt chaotic from beginning to end. Adding something extra - that had to be done away from the house, with snacks or food, drinks for everyone, sketch books, colored pencils, cameras, etc - seemed a little overwhelming. We did what we could in our backyard, but this year I hope to do more. So, after reading quite a bit about Charlotte Mason's theory behind nature walks and some help from this blog, I feel a little more prepared and ready to make this a regular part of our year.

Last week, with Kevin as our tour guide, we headed out to a local park for our first hike of the year. It was a beautiful day and the girls were thrilled - they all love to hike, look for bugs, take pictures, etc. When I go by myself, I put Daphne in a stroller and we take only paved paths. Since Kevin was with us, we decided to veer off the paved path and take a true nature hike.
. . .and we are off!

Here are some of our finds:
This squirrel was totally unaware of us watching him. He sat there and gnawed on his nut while we snapped pictures and watched him. Daphne was amazed - she kept pointing and giggling.

Look closely. . .on the red leaf

The girls spent some time drawing pictures in their nature journals. They gathered a few items: multi-colored leaves, flowers that had fallen on the ground, shells, dragonfly wing, etc. This year I am more prepared. I have nature journals, colored pencils, ziploc bags, and bug spray in a bag so all I have to do is grab the bag and head out (with water and snacks, of course).

Other than Kevin ending up with poison ivy (it was to be expected - he just looks at it from afar and ends up it all over), we had a great hike, and everyone napped/rested well after an hour hike. We are looking forward to the next one.


Jackie said...

It is so nice that Kevin can take part in some of the activities related to school. What wonderful family memories your girls will have.