Our family walks are one of my favorite things to do. I love getting out into the fresh air, energizing our bodies, and taking to time to appreciate the beauty that is all around us. The kids love it too. Yes, they get tired and say they want to go home. Yes, they get hot and thirsty. Yes, they sometimes say they don't want to do it again. But, after it is over and they are cooled down, refreshed, and clean, they always say they enjoyed it.
As parents, these walks are a great opportunity. We have the chance to model healthy living, enjoying God's creation, and teaching character qualities. As the kids walk and get tired, we talk to them about perseverance and diligence. We encourage them to do their best and to not give up. We tell them how proud we are for continuing on when it gets hard. We are intentional about mentioning what a great job they are doing. We tell them how amazed we are to see little ones—even a three-year-old—taking such a long walk/hike. We point out the beautiful things that surround us—things that most people pass by and miss. There are so many ways to inspire, encourage, and affirm children when they are doing something this is a little hard for them. It isn't always easy, but it is very worth the effort!
I really can't think of a better way to spend a Saturday morning!