Our trip to Wisconsin last weekend could not have come at a better time. The last month has been long, and we really needed some quiet time as a family to reconnect and grow. Here in the city, life is wonderful but hectic. I get so wrapped up in surviving every day that I don’t slow down enough to enjoy every day. It is an internal struggle I constantly face, and it keeps me up most nights.
With all these feelings swirling in my head, a family hike in the country felt like the right thing to do. So, we headed to the Ice Age National Scenic Trail near Whitewater, Wisconsin. It is part of a 1,000 mile footpath that traces through some of the most scenic and lovely landscapes in the country. It is quiet and peaceful and serene. Mother Nature at her finest!
With Vivian in a baby carrier and Evie and Mack on foot, we hiked 2.5 miles in 2 hours (with plenty of little stops along they way). They kept up with us, especially after a mid-hike lunch of PBJ sandwiches. The sounds of birds chirping calmed my spirit, but Evie and Mack’s constant narration made me smile: Look at that bird poo! A centipede!!! Is this bridge going to break? Mom, did you see the bat house?? Dad, look how fast I can run!
Halfway through the hike, Vivian decided she wanted out of the carrier. Proudly, she followed her older siblings. She’s a big girl now, too.
We knew it was time to turn around when Evie and Mack started fussing. I’m hot. My feet are tired. Can we get ice cream? We try to remind them (often) that being in a family is like being in a team: we all have to work hard together if we want to have fun and move in a positive direction. They might have been tired, but there was no way Chris and I could (or would!) carry all three of them; to get back to the car, we’d have to encourage each other to finish the hike on our own two feet. Go team!
Nature calms my spirit and settles my soul. Fresh air and the restorative sound of silence. Quiet time with the people I love most in the whole world. Could I ask for anything more? Nope.
Sometimes traveling just 90 miles from home feels like a world away.
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