The Great Outdoors

It appears that the boy loves to be outdoors. He absolutely cannot get enough.

Right now he is konked out, right beside me on the bed. And he well should be, after another day of nonstop new experiences and explores – most of them outdoors.

We’re in Joshua Tree at the moment and having a mini-vacation from Orange County life. I like that after fifteen years of wanting to leave this place (the high-desert, I mean), I can come back and enjoy it – the tremendous space, the quiet, and how far I can see by moonlight.

Whoo-ee, I don’t miss the endless dust or the incessant sun though. Night is better than day in the desert.

Highlights: a WILD tortoise walked through our lunch yesterday at my friend’s house (videos to follow – we fed it desert dandelions); and hearing the coyotes yammer their maniacal yelps at tonight’s twilight. If I had the right recording equipment, I would share the sound of coyotes with you. It is one of my favorite things to hear.

Now that Christian and I have worked out a routine for traveling (I drive, he naps) we may be heading out to the desert more. This trip: we’ve wandered in the desert looking for bleached cholla skeletons at sunset; and more mundane, but just as fun, we pulled weeds from the onion bed and planted tomatoes in a friend’s garden. Christian gaped (and pointed) at the flock of chickens he met today too. I got gifted a dozen eggs of varying sizes and colors. Yum.

Later this week, Chad and I will take Christian on his first backpack trip. We waited too long to make reservations and all the nicer car camping places were full – so we’re hiking three miles in to a primitive tent site near Crystal Cove. I can’t wait! Judging from how much Christian loves being outdoors here, I think he’s going to get a kick out of camping too. (Bella is choosing to skip the camping and planning to sleep over at a friends house.)

I think being outdoors is just plain good for kids. They need to spend time outdoors every day. Preferably wild outdoors. I want to aim for outdoors every day and wild outdoors at least once a week – but more if possible (ocean counts as wild, and so does Joshua Tree).

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