In a shocking turn of events, I managed to survive an entire weekend without my children saying “I’m bored!” as we escaped to a cabin in the woods with NO internet, T.V., phone, or cell reception. Mu ha ha ha…my evil plan worked. There were a whole two puzzles at the cabin and a word search book. Seriously. That was it. There were no game devices of any sort. Mother Nature was the only playmate. Why would I inflict that kind of torture on my children you ask? Because that was how I grew up.
As a child, from sun up to sun down, I was outside. I was in the woods exploring, making forts, crossing creeks and falling into mud. I was catching lightning bugs, playing tag, and coming in only when made to. It’s nice to get away and give that opportunity to my children. Of course they get to play outside here as well, but being away from technology every once in a while is good for your family and sometimes you don’t even have to go that far. We went to one of our State Parks, and you can do that too.
We were surrounded by 16,000 acres of forest and over 5 miles of trails that wound their way through the woods and around the lake. We started off at the trail closest to our cabin and decided to go all the way around the lake. There was a journal in the cabin that other visitors had written in and one lady wrote about seeing a beaver’s dam on the far side of the lake. I thought it would be cool for the girls to see. Little did I know it would start sprinkling on us and that the “trails” were sometimes reminiscent of my own childhood as they were pretty much non-existent in some parts. As we neared the “bog marsh” area, my daughter happened to spot a frog the size of a fingernail. We heard noises in the distance and I kept pointing out the flowers and different plants I could identify. I looked for tracks in the mud, but didn’t see anything that alarmed me. We got near an area where the trail had completely washed away and was nothing but mud so I moved some branches around so we could cross a fallen log and jump onto the bridge that was the rest of the trail. That was the girls favorite part.
Luckily, we made it all the way around without anyone falling in the muddy water. Well, almost. There might have been one ummmm kid who thought she could jump the “ravine” like back in the old days. She almost made it, but not quite. Can’t blame a girl for trying.
“I think that I cannot preserve my health and spirits, unless I spend four hours a day at least – and it is commonly more than that – sauntering through the woods and over the hills and fields, absolutely free from all worldly engagements.” ~Henry David Thoreau