Get Outisde Together: A Challenge for You.


Spring is coming. Can you feel it? I know. You're still up to your armpits in snow and the roads are covered in ice. But take a closer look. That snow is getting sloppy by late morning and is crusted with ice when the sun rises in the morning. The roads are icy because it's warming up, tempting the snow into a mid-day melt.

Yes, late winter is wet, messy, and full of the promise of what is to come.



  And so I issue you the Spring Solstice Challenge: Get Outside Together. Everyday. (Yes, even for me this one can be a stretch some days. Here in Wisconsin February and March are gray, damp and can chill you through faster than January's bitter cold.)

A simple rhythm of outdoor time can bring us into a space of presence to observe this transition – day after day. This can bring this doorway between seasons to life. So give it a try. Bundle up and go outside together. Every single day.

The simpliest incarnation if this is a family walk, perhaps before dinner while the meal is in the oven or our favorite, a "bedtime walk" between dinner and bedtime. My kids even put on their jammies before we go so they are ready to tuck in when we return to our dark house at the end of our walk. Or perhaps you are home with your children during the day and can make time earlier, before a nap or after lunch.

Starting a new habit is often uncomfortable. We resist the new rhythm. At least I do. Change is uncomfortable. But if you persevere a magical thing happens. We fall in love with the ritual.

Start slowly, perhaps with quick walk around the block. Take your dog, bring a notebook, grab your camera. What every speaks to your heart can become a part of this journey, like our daily Gnome Walks of last fall. Hold hands, sing songs, or keep silence. Find your rhythm.

For children taking the same route each day can bring a safe comfort and predictability. To observe the same puddle that transitions from slush to ice to water to dry mud reveals something about the world, as does watching a snow bank become grass and earth become buds become flowers.


Will you join me? Will I meet you along my route as I walk with my kids each day, physically or energetically? I'd love to have you join us.

28 thoughts on “Get Outisde Together: A Challenge for You.

  1. Lori says:

    Yes yes. I love being outside and will appreciate it even more when I’m off crutches. So starting next week we will join your challenge and be outside every day. 🙂

  2. Renee says:

    Yes, we’ll join you, now that the sidewalks are clear here outside Chicago. And the ten day forecast shows highs above freezing EVERY DAY. So ready for spring! As soon as my son recovers from his tonsillectomy, we’ll be out taking walks, riding bikes, and thinking of your challenge.

  3. Mama Jen says:

    I have for a few years had this goal of outside time, even if just for 10 minutes. Does wonders for clearing your mind and nothing like fresh air to boost everyone’s mood. I had been thinking I need to be more mindful of this again as recently is has not been happening. This is a perfectly timed GREAT and needed reminder as sickness has made us hermits this weekend. I was hoping for a short walk post lunch today and this just the motivator to make it happen. Thank you. Peace and blessings to you and yours.

  4. Tracey says:

    With outside animals to tend to we have to go out everyday-even if we don’t feel like it. I spent the
    morning photographing all the flowers in the yard as
    spring is here in the south. I do hope it lasts awhile before the heat of summer arrives.

  5. Abbie says:

    The “melt” season is my least favorite! So hard to get outside right now. Great challenge. We love evening, pre-bed walks.
    Great reminder.

  6. Jenifer says:

    Okay, count me in. We’ll work to make our afternoon walks more of a daily activity no matter the weather. 🙂

  7. Rachel Wolf says:

    Thanks for jumping in, Jen. We have been in hermit mode a bit too, especially with Sage learning to read. He wants to snuggle in and not leave the house for days on end. ~ Rachel

  8. Rachel Wolf says:

    I cant wait until we have animals again (the farm kind) to push us into that state of presence. Thanks for the reminder that spring is indeed coming. More snow in our forecast tomorrow…
    ~ Rachel

  9. Jacinda says:

    We are in late Summer here and are still in recovery mode from the recent earthquake so we are outside most of the day. Walking the hills on our way home at the end of a long day stitching we will think of you in the snow!

  10. susan says:

    Although our weather here in Arizona is already plenty warm, this is a good reminder for us to make it outside EVERY DAY so that I don’t regret not taking advantage of the nicer winter weather when the 115-degree summer is upon us. While it hardly sounds like a challenge to most people for us to make it outside in 80-degree weather, for me it’s more about making time for outdoors and not getting caught up in less important endeavors around the house. So, yes, I’ll accept the challenge.

  11. nannergirl says:

    Thanks for the challenge. I have no trouble getting out when it’s sunny but I need a little boost when it’s dark and grey. We still have tons of snow here, so we might as well enjoy it 🙂

  12. Rachel Wolf says:

    Sending good love and stable thoughts  your way, Jacinda. I have a friend in Christchurch, so I know the scope of what you are sifting through.

  13. Rachel Wolf says:

    Even in gorgeous spring and summer I get caught up in the inside tasks that swallow up our day. So I get it! Enjoy that 80 F for us thought, wont you? We are awaiting a big winter storm tonight…
    ~ Rachel

  14. Pamela R says:

    For me, with the babe big enough to walk, but not big enough to keep herself upright in the snowbank, it has been easy to get the big kids outside, but I find myself often staying behind with the babe. When we walk somewhere (errands), we all have a better day, so…here goes. Every day. Thanks for the motivation.

  15. Roxy Schow says:

    Yep – we’re in! We have this goal . . . it’s really part of our daily groove . . . but we’ve been remiss as it’s been so. darn. cold! Today the snow is softly falling and we plan to join it if only for a few minutes. Thanks for the boost!

  16. Nancy says:

    We went out in a warmish spring rain to wade in the neighbor’s creek. Found a special place that is hidden from all the surrounding neighbors but with a beautiful yellow shrub in bloom. both kids nap better after some outdoor time.

  17. Danielle says:

    Oh, I wish we could take you up on your challenge. With the birth of our little one just a few days ago we are turning inward again. Though I hope that once spring is here in earnest we’ll be ready, all four of us, to get out and enjoy!

  18. denise says:

    It is more magical at this time of year to go when darkness descends. We can see our breath by the orange streetlight glow. Makes it worth it. 😉

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