Last year, a friend introduced me to an Instagram account by the name of 1,000 Hours Outside. I lurked a bit and thought to myself, " Well, this is really nice, but we play a lot outside...and I don't need to track our hours to know that." But I lurked some more. We really do love being outside. We spend a lot of time outdoors, especially in the nice weather. The more and more her posts popped up in my feed, I found myself stopping my scroll and really listening to what she (her name is Ginny) has to say.
Sure, we spent a lot of time outside, but what was missing was the intentionality of it. We were not being intentional about our time outside. Once that realization hit me, the parts were set in motion. It became so obvious to me. We needed to prioritize this time. It was time to make a change and it was time to jump into this challenge right now. Today. Today happened to be February 19, 2020. This isn't about starting on New Years Day. This was about starting.
Now, coincidentally, look at that date that we started. 2/19/20. Less than a month later, our world would change and turn completely upside down. March 13, 2020 our state went into a lockdown and quarantine that was supposed to only be 2 weeks... and we know how that ended. Having been already in this habit of intentionally being outside everyday gave us at least a tiny sense of stability and purpose to our days. What a blessing!
So, how have we spent our time (in quarantine mind you) outside and what have we done with ourselves?
The colder months were a bit challenging for us. There's a few reasons for this- I hate cold weather. I get the winter blues. I hate cold weather. And mostly, I hate cold weather.
This challenge has helped me take control of that aspect of my life. I tend to feel "trapped" indoors in the winter. This has given me the motivation and again, the intentionality, to go outside. I addressed my problem head on and I got some base-layers and some wool socks for each of us. They aren't fancy, but they do the job and they keep us warm. Being comfortable has made the biggest difference!
Here are some things we have done in the winter months:
Honestly, it's brought us closer together as a family. We spend so much more time together in the outdoors and I don't see us ever looking back. I will begin blogging updates every season about our experiences, but I want to hear your thoughts and ideas! Leave me some of your tips and activities in the comments or hope on over to my Facebook page or Instagram to join the conversation.
Here's the links:
1000 Hours Outside
Jess Nicole Photography Facebook Page
Jess Nicole Photography Instagram
Jess is a photographer serving families located in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia. She specializes in documentary and storytelling photography.