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Nature walks with kids are so much more than just family time. Not only are they a great way to spend time together as a family, they set the foundation for self-reliance. Having skills you can use out in nature is an essential life skill kids need to know. Our family affectionately refer to it as “man training.”
The term “Man training” came from Anthony Cumia of the “The Anthony Cumia Show.” When he was in his teens, he went to live with his Dad in California. His Dad would take him out in the desert for all sorts to adventures, dubbed “man training:” shooting guns, riding horses, fireworks, hunting, camping, and so on. Granted, this isn’t the rosy picture I am painting. Anthony also road shotgun, terrified, as his father drove drunk down a coastal highway. But that is neither here nor there. The point being his dad referred to self-reliance skills as “man training.”
Jason’s dad taught him a lot about self-reliance and nature, and he wanted to pass that along to our kids. So we refer to anything in regards to self-reliance as “man training.” Nature walks are where they learn so much about foliage, animals, and tracking.
On Hobbit day aka the first day of autumn we went for hike at a local nature park. It was a beautiful day and a great day for a hike, sunny and cool.
These two are such good friends. It warms my heart to see it. Cute little buggers.
We had a nice hike, with a few stops along the way. We stopped here to examine some seed pods. The girls were enthralled by this and were looking for more seed pods and stripping grass seeds from their stalks. It’s amazing what they become fascinated with.
Since Fofo is a little older (and her father’s daughter) Jason teaches her some tracking skills. Here they are looking at a rabbit trail. We also found a dead snake on the trail. A bird must have changed his mind after catching him, so they were also looking for snakes.
Towards the end of our walk we came to this gorgeous Grandfather oak tree. I’m a boob, so all I know is that it is a beautiful tree. Jason is able to explain all about it to the girls. We make a pretty good team 😉
Here they are feeling the tough bark of the oak tree as Jason explains how it helps protect it from fires.
We took about an hour-long walk before we needed to head home for lunch. Some of the other things we did but I didn’t get a chance to snap a picture was attempt to catch grasshoppers, touch/smell the evergreen trees, and explained the importance of leaving things in the woods in order maintain a healthy ecosystem. We (and I mean Jason) did our best answer what’s this flower, what’s this plant. A great family walk.
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