Monday, August 11, 2008

Back to nature

Today was my first Monday back at work after three days off at the beginning of last week.

I'm missing the freedom, the ability to wake up in the morning and say, "OK, what should we do today?"

On Wednesday, Rye and I went to a nature center in eastern Iowa and hiked along a ridge overlooking the Loess Hills. We ran and walked about a mile one way on a trail before winding up in a forested campground where we looked at wildflowers and butterflies and sat on logs. We talked about going camping there sometime, and we planned where to put the tent and what to cook over the campfire.

Rye picked up sticks and played. Outside. Which we don't always do enough.

On the way back to the trailhead, Rye asked me to carry him. And I did. And I tried to look around extra hard, to soak it in just a little bit more.

We were tired and hot when we were done. It felt good.

To get some semblance of that feeling -- just the tiniest bit -- I take my shoes off whenever I can. Especially on days that I have to go to work. I drive barefoot. And I generally go into daycare to get Rye barefoot. And I take them off at my desk whenever I can. No one knows the difference. And it just feels better.

The weather now feels like fall, and oh-so nice with its slight chill and mostly sunny days. It's got me thinking about pumpkins and Halloween already.

Next weekend, we may camp. In the backyard. And that will be better than nothing.

Here are some more pictures from our hike.


Hip Mom's Guide said...

That hike looks wonderful. We just took our boys to Yellowstone and hiked their tails off. It was awesome! I think that when you spend time with kids and nature--no matter where you are--it's all good, especially if you're barefoot.

Anonymous said...


chris said...

Those are great pictures, Veronica. I do that at school sometimes too. I'll take my shoes off when I'm wearing sandals. It's probably really gross, but it feels good to walk around during my plan time without shoes.

Jenny said...

I'm so glad you enjoyed your time off! I think I take going barefoot for granted sometimes, I never thought about how much closer to the situation it can make you feel. Great point!