Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Petit Jean State Park, Day Two...

When I started taking the boys to the woods for a week every summer, David was five, Jacob was three, Bryan was a year and a half, and Rand was a possibility.  On our hikes, once we got further than 100 yards, at any given moment, at least one child was crying, but a long as someone was having a good time, I considered the outing a success.  Now we can cover a lot more distance and my challenge is finding that parenting sweet spot where the boys can climb and explore and be the fierce, wild things The Lord made them, and yet not plunge to an early and grisly death.  With four boys, each with his own plan, it's nontrivial, but my theory is that if I let them get their adrenaline fix climbing rocks, they won't turn to base jumping or crack cocaine.

Everyone survived today's hikes.  We saw some spectacular stuff.

On the way home tonight, David told a scary story.  Then it was Rand's turn...

Rand:  My turn! My turn!  (serious voice). Once 'pon time, there was a boy.  He lost he mommy and daddy.  (dramatic pause). Then he not find he brothers.  (dramatic pause, then with great pride). I make that up my selse.


  1. Rand's story is sweet. You know what is scary for him. It gives me hope that one day my kids will enjoy hiking. Right now we're in the "within 100 yards someone always ends up crying," phase.

    1. For the first few years, I just decided I wanted to walk in the woods for 20-30 minutes and they would have to cope with it since they couldn't stay at the cabin alone. Even now, our best hikes with all four are when we cover VERY short distances and I let them spend a lot of time exploring. The older two can do longer hikes without much complaint as long as I bring a lot of snacks. We've definitely had some ugly hikes, though.


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