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I is for intentionality.
It’s literally never been more important for us to get outside every single day. I’ve had this habit for over 940 days, spending 20 consecutive minutes outside every single day, and it’s always been helpful and I’ve never regretted it. But until this whole situation, yeah, we’re still not using the word yet, it wasn’t crucial. It wasn’t the most important thing we did every day – or maybe it was and I didn’t know it. Either way, now it feels that way.
Now, it feels so, so important. And so we’re being more intentional than ever.
That meant doing what I think is probably a record number of new things during what has been a mostly normal workweek for me. First, we booked a public use cabin with the state park system. We stayed there Sunday night and I took Monday off from work. It was a great way to get away from the real world for just a few minutes and not check my email. We walked on a frozen glacier lake, had s’mores around a campfire, and it was so perfect that I immediately booked another cabin for late April.
We took a walk in our neighborhood – like on the streets with the dogs on leashes – instead of heading into the backwoods. Again, that never happens.
I ran – okay hiked, slowly dying, but I wanted it to be running – up a new-to-me mountain in the local area. It was great. And when a big wind swept into the valley – I’m talking gusts up to 75 miles per hour – we drove down the road to a lake we’ve only ever visited in the summer, and we walked across it and watched a bald eagle gliding in the wind. It was the best in its own way.
Guys, I need you to get outside. It doesn’t have to be epic. I know many of your playgrounds are closed and even some trails, but you really, really, really can get outside with your families. If you have a porch, go out on it. If you have a street, walk on it. Go outside, breathe fresh air, spend 20 minutes, no matter the weather, and get it in. You can do this. You need to do this.
I know the current situation has us all on edge, it can be a hard time to say, I’m going to start something new. But don’t do this because it’s a new goal to have or a great new habit to build. Do it because you need to and because you just want to stay sane. Do it even if it’s a comedy of errors.
By the way, that’s how the cabin trip was – a comedy of errors. First, the heater in the cabin would not work. It was literally broken. Luke tried and tried to start it and it legitimately was broken. I was very nervous that we were about to have a very cold night in the cabin. After all, it’s still winter here in Alaska, but we were warming up and my eight year old even proclaimed himself way too hot. He’s like a little furnace.
And then here’s the real fail. Our camp grill decided to have a big problem. A slow leak in the propane turned into a big leak and every time we tried to start it there was fire. And not just fire on the stove – other fire, not the kind of fire we wanted, not the kind of fire you want inside your cabin.
And so here’s where the problem was. We had no hot water, and therefore no coffee. Let me just say that again. No coffee in the cabin. In the end, we found a coffee shop open as we drove to the lake for a walk, because – praise the Lord – I was about to die. I am a coffee addict. I know that now. That’s just how it’s going to be. And now we have a new camp stove coming on the way to our house and we know maybe to bring a little backup stove just in case next time, because the danger of no coffee is not to be underestimated.
This week’s real outdoor hero and quite frankly, the real outdoor hero of indoors and outdoors and all the moments in the world, by the way, is coffee. Do not underestimate the need for it. I did briefly, and that was a mistake.
Coffee, I love you. If you want to see photos of our trip, uou can always check us out on Instagram. And remember, go outside, go outside. And while you’re at it, tag your adventures with #humansoutside365 so we can see what you’re up to when you go outside. Until next time, we’ll see you out there.