Today was a great day! My hubby typically works on Saturdays this time of year, but he had the day off today. We decided since the weather has been wonderful we would take off to Gatlinburg, for a mini hike with the girls. He is really getting into hiking and biking as am I! I want my girls to grow up with an appreciation for the nature that is around us. We are fortunate to live very close to The Great Smoky Mountains and spend time in the mountains when we can. I can't wait till Spring and Summer!
The girls seemed to have a great time. It was their 1st hike. We started with a bathroom break and got some trail maps to plan future hikes at the Sugarlands Visitor Center. Then headed back toward Gatlinburg to the Gatlinburg trail. It was a nice trail next to the water. It was very good seeing other children on the trail and at the visitor center knowing they were going to be hiking, too. It made my heart melt because the parents want their children to enjoy nature.
It is disturbing when in August when we start school and go outside for our educational break, and many students immediately begin to complain that it is too hot! They don't want to run and play outside. They want to stay inside in the cooler building. It bothers me when you show them a computer in the room and you can't keep them off of it, but to do anything physical forget it. When I was little sure we had video games, but when it was warm enough to be outside, we were outside. We were running around, playing ball, going to the park, going fishing, catching fireflies, anything that meant we didn't have to be in the house. We would hate when the sun began to set, because we knew it was almost time to go inside for the night. But the next day if it wasn't raining we were outside again.
I understand that as parents we can't let our children run outside and play while we work in the house like my parents used to; due to the cruel people who want to hurt children being out there. But is it that difficult to take time and spend it with your child. I see so many parents who would rather set their child in front of a video game or tv, just so they don't have to deal with them. This makes me mad. These children will never understand or appreciate nature because what you see on tv doesn't let you feel nature! You can't breathe the fresh air!
My girls are going to grow up in a technology driven world, and yes they have video games and watch tv. BUT they are going to be able to share stories at school about going to the park, and camping, hiking, biking, and fishing, and anything else they show an interest in that is outdoors. I can only hope they enjoy the outdoors as much as their daddy and I did when we were little. We are going to show them and take them places we never were able to go, and I hope they enjoy it and want to do more. I just wish my kids in my classroom were given the same opportunities with their families.
So I leave you with this thought.......When was the last time you got away from the real world and enjoyed NATURE?