Yesterday we took a family hiking trip on a 4 mile trail in the woods. We really enjoyed ourselves and loved the time outside in the fresh air. Eve practically ran the entire thing! She was really impressive. Ariel rode on Jason’s shoulders for most of the walk and I had Grace in my Ergo Carrier. We had great, mild weather for hiking in January. We spent a lot of the time talking about how much more we want to do this and talked about how much we want to go camping this summer. I have a wishlist of a tent and sleeping bags and basic gear but just going out to the North Jersey state campgrounds and “roughing” it as simply as possible is my goal. I’m hoping we keep getting enough mild weekends that I can work on my hiking skills all winter, though. The Ergobaby carrier was FANTASTIC. I have had it for 4 years now and it’s a little worn and stained from use over the years but it has held up magnificently and was really supportive. The weight of having someone on me for a 4 mile walk started to hit me around mile 3, though! My lower back and shoulders are still a bit sore today. I plan to keep going on hikes with her and build up my strength for this kind of activity.
I challenge you all, get active and go for some hikes. Push yourselves and teach your kids to love nature and being outdoors. It’s so good for our bodies and our minds and is a great, affordable way to spend some time together.
I learned something the hard way this year. If you remember my post on our Familys stance on Santa– I think I need to work out my method in how we live this out with my kids while they are young. Too young to not scream “Santa’s not real!” at everyone and anyone. Because that is what my beautiful 4 year old did to anyone and everyone who asked her anything about Christmas at my Dads Christmas Eve bash. Including when my Dad asked her what she thought she was going to get for Christmas.
Eve and I had talked in length this week how lots of families believe in Santa and that it hurts their hearts if we tell them Santa is not real. That when others ask us about Santa, we should just answer as if Santa is real. Her big blue innocent eyes agreed and she told me she understood. My conclusion at the end of all of this is a secret this big is just way too big for a 4 year old to keep inside. She was like a bubble waiting to burst with the news, Like a Megaphone with a huge announcement- ready to blare. We got looks and round eyes and shocked faces and comments about how this broke their hearts that she knew this. Me explaining our family stance and how I grew up the same way and still loved Christmas and did not feel the least bit robbed of the magical experience didn’t ease people at all that I could tell.
While I continue to stand 100% on my belief that I don’t want to follow the tradition of lieing to my kids each year and I have no desire to tell them a man (and his creepy elf on a shelf) is watching them and will sneak in their house to leave gifts if they are good- I am thinking that I need to sensor *how* we talk to them until they are old enough to really understand that they cannot shout the news out to all their friends. And relatives. And strangers in stores. Until then maybe I should just not respond to comments and questions on Santa. Not encourage belief in the real man but not say anything about his realness either way. After all, by next year Eve may very well not even remember this year and Ariel definitely won’t remember. So, I’m deciding to walk a more careful line until my kids can handle not screaming Santa is not real from the roof tops.
And to those of you who I saw this week and my daughter told your child this news… I’m sorry. Tell them she is nuts. 😉