Happy Birthday to Me

One of the great joys of my adulthood has been my birthday. I love getting to decide what to do. So I roped my neighbors and my family into a 4.5 mile hike for hike 45.

We headed to Lapham Peak State Park to hike a segment of the Ice Age trail. We walked from the Ice Age parking lot up to the observation tower. Then up the tower and back down by a different trail.

This hike was a bit of a doozy. The ground was super muddy. So the trail was a mess. Warren refused to walk much of the way up. We took a straight shot back down, and that was a solid decision. This trail was less beaten up and much easier to navigate. Warren walked part of the way back down. He loved it. Graham walked all but a smidgen of the 4.5 miles.

I’ve never been so happy to have an extra change of clothes in the car. It was pretty hot for February in Wisconsin, 65 degrees. I was in a tank top at one point. It was so amazing to celebrate my birthday this way. Glad I could wrangle the family into this hiking game.


Hike 44

There was a major turn around in the last couple of weeks. All of the sudden I was going out again. Hikes are just falling out of the sky. Just kidding, I still have to walk them. img_6063

We went at Havenwoods for hike 44. It was sunny, windy and chilly but we had a great time. Everything is better with friends. img_6062

The kids played on branches and in the remains of ice. Our weather has been up and down a lot, a sure sign that spring is coming.


Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it

Anytime we dig ourselves out from the trenches it always takes a bit of time. February seems to grab a lot of people and be a bit of a downer. It’s not exactly the easiest time of the year to unfunk oneself. However, I’m really appreciating the slower pace of this month. I’m focusing on getting down on the ground with the kids. I need to walk some miles in order to exercise, so I’ve added a stroller walk into our routines. But the work of being mindful in our explorations is just as important, so we’ve been at a wandering pace.img_6054

In these slower days, I can wait while they climb the stairs. I can listen as the water begins to flow underneath the ice. We waddle like penguins on the ice. We run back and forth across bridges and spend time just staring at what is underneath. I can point out the woodpecker tapping on the trees. I can talk about why hollow trees fall over. I exclaim over and over how good it feels to bask in the sunshine. img_6051

I can marvel at the beauty of the ice. I can walk as slow as my 1-year-old.

Here I am. I’m being slow. I’m embracing how it good it feels.

Hike 43 Done! 1 more mile. 88.5 miles so far!



I’ve been tagged to write a post about why I’m #RockingMotherhood I’m struggling a bit in general right now- so this was a really hard and good exercise for me. I’ve been really letting the exercise portion of my health routine slide, and it’s made a noticeable difference in my life. I’m attempting to see the positives right now so I’ve let the thoughts sort of come to me over the week and this is what I’ve come up with.img_9084

  1. I’m great at keeping my kids on schedule. Yeah, I know. Everyone and their brother is anti-schedule these days. But my kids do better when breakfast is at 6, lunch is at 11:30, nap takes place at noon and bedtime is 7:00 ish. I do better as a mom when I know what to expect. I’m not a slave to my schedule, I flex when I need to, but it serves us well.
  2. I offer my kids unstructured play time. We goof off a lot. Eventually, I’m going to hear them say I’m bored. It’ll be good for them.
  3. We go OUTSIDE! Almost daily. We hike or just play around. The kids get dirty. I want them to love the smell of dirt. I try to push myself to get outside more with them and show them what it means to love being outside. I learn so much by watching their enthusiasm for the smallest thing. Shoveling snow is their favorite chore.
  4. I read. I read to them. I read my own books in front of them. I read and I read and I read. (why yes, Little Blue Truck has been on repeat around here.)
  5. I tell them how much I love them and that I’m proud of them. Especially with my eldest, at night before lights out, I snuggle up and tell him all the things that make him wonderful. I want them to know I’m proud, not just of what they accomplish but also of who they are.
  6. I make mistakes and say I’m sorry about them. I try to model apologizing as often as possible.
  7. We plan to have adventures. We’re currently planning a trip to England, so we talk a lot about travel and where we’re going. We plan adventures together. I make sure to ask them what hike they’d like to go on next. I also talk about the trips we’ve taken in the past
  8. I cook dinner. And it’s usually tasty.
  9. I make them cute hand knit things to wear. Handwork is so important. There is nothing cuter than a baby decked out in clothes you’ve made yourself.
  10. I love my husband. I think this is super important. Someday these kiddos are going to have relationships of their own. I want my example to be a good one. I try to actively love my husband. I try to tell him that I love him as often as possible. I wouldn’t be the mom I am if it wasn’t for him. He’s such a great Dada to our kiddos. I’m strengthened by his presence and want my kids to know it.
  11. I take time for myself. I am a better mom when I: workout, eat healthier, go on hikes, meditate, go on women’s retreats, hang out with my sisters, talk with my mom, and have girl time with my friends. I don’t do all these things at once and I balance them with the time I pour into my kiddos. When I take a small amount of time for myself I have so much more energy for them.img_5598

Motherhood isn’t easy. There are a lot of things I struggle with (dishes I’m looking at you). Making it a priority to be there for my kids is a challenge some days and a breeze others. As I read through what others have said I realized how much we all give to our kids on a daily basis. Celebrating our accomplishments is time well spent.

Thanks to Stephanie at Antler & Gills for tagging me. I’m currently in the process of tagging people, so I’ll update this post when I have them.