One thing that many stay at home can institute into their plans which can be both refreshing and healthy, is a walk in the park. Spending so much time indoors can plant seeds of depression and lead to unwanted habits that will result in unhealthiness. This is true for everyone, not just stay at home moms. Every day countless people wake up and perform ritual after ritual before heading out the door for a tedious day of work. This only lead to us getting home with the intentions of lounging for the next 8 to 10 hours.
One activity that any stay at home mom can enjoy, that’s fun for moms and kids alike, is a Nature Walk. We are all spending entirely too much time cooped up indoors. Not just stay at home moms, and kids, but everybody. All of us. We’re a nation of office and factory workers who spend all day inside at our jobs, then hurry back home where we go inside out houses and close our doors to the world around us, in favor of watching television the rest of the day. We’re losing touch with nature, losing our awareness of the wonders of the natural world around us. So are our kids.
There are numerous benefits to taking your kids on regular nature walks. Fresh air and exercise, for starters. But besides those obvious benefits, there are many others to be gained by getting in touch with Mother Nature.
A walk through the park, for example, is an opportunity to see how things grow…to experience not just the visual beauty of flowers, for instance, but to smell their delightful scent…feel the silken texture of a rose petal, hear the wind singing through the limbs of a majestic pine tree and so much more. A Nature Walk is a way of getting us in touch with all our senses.
Besides the beauty of growing things like flowers and trees, we can watch birds in flight and marvel at their natural aerodynamics. The discovery of a robin’s nest with beautiful little blue eggs is a treat enjoyed at any age. On another walk, on another day, we can watch as the baby birds who hatched from those same eggs take their first awkward flights from the nest. We might observe the mama robin as she ventures away from the nest to gather insects and worms, then carries them in her beak back to the nest to feed her perpetually hungry babies.
We might take our Nature Walk on the banks of a stream and see the tiny minnows darting like quicksilver just below the surface, or a dragonfly skimming the surface of the water….watch the sunlight sparkle on the water like diamonds….listen to the gentle, soothing murmur of the water as it flows.
Maybe we could take a Nature Walk past a pasture where cows graze, or horses, and observe them as they placidly munch the sweet smelling freshly mowed hay or emerald green grass. We might see a couple of baby calves or foals cavorting and romping, playing their animal games and having fun, filled with the simple joy of being alive.
We might visit a farm and see a garden bursting with rows of red, ripe tomatoes and bright yellow squash, tall ears of corn rustling in the wind, the delicious perfume of ripe melons, heavy on the vine. While we’re there, we can pick some of this bounty from nature to have for our dinner as a bonus of our walk with nature.
There are endless variations of the above scenarios. A whole world just full of wondrous things—plants, animals, minerals, earth, wind, water, sky; all there to be enjoyed by anybody who will get out there and take advantage of the opportunity to experience the pleasures and learn the lessons of Mother Nature. It’s fun, it’s healthy, it’s a treat for all the senses, and it’s educational.
Do this with your kids. You’ll be glad you did, and so will they!