Friday, July 20, 2012

Arriving at the Next Stage

 Getting ready to embark upon our first family canoe ride on Sugar Creek.

 Halfway through the ride, we snagged a place on shore to eat lunch.
 After lunch, the boys and I climbed up and across a suspension bridge.
 The highlight of the day for some of the boys was seeing raccoons up close.
 After the canoe ride, we took a walk around Turkey Run State Park.  
 Cooper finally found an appropriate place to climb.
The trail was certainly not what I expected.  It cut through bluffs and over streams.  The boys were mud-caked and drenched.

When I see a sweet, sleepy newborn or a swollen pregnant tummy, I grow a little sad.  I certainly miss those days.  A tiny little part of my brain thinks, "It's not too late; you can always have another."

Then there's days like today when I'm so grateful we've moved onto the next stage in our parenting journey.  We've arrived at the stage where the boys are independent enough that we can all enjoy many activities together.  Gone are the days when I'm lugging around a diaper bag or nursing a baby while pushing a stroller.  This summer, I have four potty trained, independently walking children.  That means, this summer we've engaged in activities we never attempted before, like taking the boys on a three mile canoe ride.

All four boys (and two adults) adored the trip.  The big boys enjoyed paddling and the little boys spent their time searching for wildlife. We finished the canoe ride up with a hike that wound through jagged bluffs and over babbling streams.  The boys emerged from the hike mud-caked and drenched, but happy.

I asked Connor about his favorite part of the day.  He responded, "Seeing a dead rabbit."

In the world of little boys, you can't beat that.

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