Days like this

I wish I had more days like this.

Days where I wake up early and get enough work done that I can be totally focused on the boys by 9:00.

Days where Anders and Finn get up on their own by 9:00. Without my intervention, they show up in the living room in good moods and ready to go.

Days where we get in a little reading, grammar, or math without much fuss.

Days where we spend a couple hours rambling about outside soaking in the autumn colors and bright sunshine.

Usually, our fall season looks just like this. This year it’s been busy at the office (you know, my couch where I sit with my laptop). I’ve said “yes” to too many events, classes, and get-togethers for both myself and the boys.

While work and socializing have played a part in our lack of outdoor time lately, a big chunk of the reason is Finn. The boy doesn’t like to hike and he’s not afraid to express it. Whenever I suggest some time in nature, he protests. He freaks out. He “hates” it. Sometimes I just don’t have the energy to deal with that and I don’t even bring it up.

I think being outside, having unstructured time in nature, is important for their development. I know it’s important for my well being. I wouldn’t let someone’s hatred of brushing teeth make me avoid that twice daily ritual, but I do let it affect our hiking schedule.

I’ve tried calling it “play time,” I’ve tried bringing paints and snacks and not even hiking. He still doesn’t want to go. I drag him along and hope he’ll have fun once we get there, and that works for a little bit, but three or four minutes of walking and he begs to go home.

I want to respect his interests. I imagine it’s tough being born to a mom who wants to hike or cross-country ski more than anything else. I imagine it’s hard to have an older brother whom you look up to that also loves to hike and cross-country ski (and has more than enough energy to do it all day).

So, what to do? I guess we keep at it and hope he starts to like or tolerate it. I’ll keep looking for ways to make it more fun for him. And I’ll try to find time to get out with Anders while he is with someone else.

It makes me a little sad that Finn won’t be my outdoor buddy; at least we’re still close indoor pals.

My buddies.

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