This week, families and friends across the United States are celebrating Thanksgiving Day. Also this week, the Hike it Baby family and friends are celebrating every day by giving thanks for all that we hold dear about our time spent in the outdoors. Some find relaxation, growth and more on the trail. Others enjoy the invaluable support of their Hike it Baby community. Still others come to appreciate their family even more as they spend time together outdoors. In our own ways, we all feel gratitude and inspiration through our relationship with nature.
Perhaps you’ll find inspiration in our personal stories for every day this week to get outside, so read on … and Happy Thanksgiving!
November 18: Summer Kraft
I suffer from severe anxiety and am thankful for the medicine that Mother Nature provides to calm my nerves: fresh air, sunshine, flowing rivers, dirt beneath my feet ….
November 19: Katy Nelson Schmidt
I’m so grateful for Hike it Baby for introducing me to some amazing, like-minded mamas and babies! I’ve just recently moved to Florida. While we may not log lots of miles, I’ve made lots of fun memories with awesome people.
November 20: Kyla Phillips
I’m thankful to be married to a man who is willing to go on any adventure we find. He’s willing to explore every trail (even when I don’t always know where I’m going). More than anything, I am grateful to be able to share this love of nature with our amazing son. I can’t imagine raising him with a more perfect partner! It fills my heart with joy to think back on the many hikes we’ve taken with Hike it Baby. I am incredibly excited to get back on the trails and with more wonderful families!
November 21: Lisa Boness
Every trail, every campsite, every day is different out there. Sometimes it rains when sun was forecast. Sometimes the trail narrows where you least expect it. It doesn’t matter though, because every moment is special and rewarding in its own way.
I know the importance of staying present in what is around me and to recognize these moments. This lesson learned applies to every other aspect of my life too. I am so grateful to have learned this as a child from my own family. Most of all from my grandma, who shared her own love of the outdoors with me from an early age. I cherish every memory made and look forward to every future moment I can spend in the outdoors. I am thankful to have been taught to stop, to take a deep breath, and to take it all in.
This picture, taken on a hike late this past summer in Pike National Forest in Colorado, captures something about hiking and the outdoors that I am especially grateful for – the lessons it provides to be in the moment.
November 22: Shanti Hodges
Hiking reminds me every day how small we are and how big the world is. When I get on trail with Mason and we look at every little stick, stone, bug and bee, I am reminded that we are all connected. I am thankful for clean air, beautiful views and the cycles of nature, and with every hike I can share that with my little guy. Just this last week I did a hike with a handful of parents and kids. We had all just met, as is the way with Hike it Baby, but it was amazing to see how connected we all felt thanks to being out together in nature.
November 23: Tamara Johnson
I’m thankful for hiking for the space it has always given me to return to myself, to calm my spirit, and to listen for the answers I didn’t even know I was seeking.
November 24: Natalie Jo Kendrach
I am beyond thankful for hiking and my HiB community. Both have helped me become more confident in myself and my ability to raise my children. When we are hiking, I find that we are all happier and more relaxed. It helps us slow down and appreciate the beauty around us. The HiB community that we have worked hard to grow has provided us with a support system and invaluable friendships over the past three years. My children always look forward to seeing their Hike it Baby friends, and I personally enjoy the adult conversation. As an extrovert, it leaves me feeling refreshed, renewed and ready to tackle the rest of the day. There is NO way I would have survived the first three years of parenthood without my HiB family. Hiking with them has truly changed my life and the lives of my family!
If you feel inspired to get outside, why wait? Many of us will be getting out this week, even on Black Friday. Consider joining us for #OptOutside. Or if you seek more inspiration, read our previous sets of personal stories in the “30 Days of Thanks with Hike it Baby” series, week 1, week 2 and week 3.
During this season of thanksgiving, please take a moment to consider donating something this Giving Tuesday. It can be $5, $10, $50, $100. Whatever works for your family. It all helps and we appreciate every dime. Any donation you make today is 100% tax-deductible. And this year, as a special thank you, donations of $30 or more receive a one-of-a-kind Hike it Baby Sunday Afternoons kid’s play hat.