You know that smell. That crisp, earthy, smoky smell that hits you in the face when you open the door of your cozy, blanket-of-warmth home. While it brings the reminder that winter is coming, there is something about fall that also introduces a clear-headedness, a feeling of being alive, a sense of refreshment. Summer is my personal favorite, but there is something about fall that stirs up so much within me. Just a hint of that pure earthy scent and I feel very much alert and ready for what’s to come.
The brisk air beckons to me, however, stuff on my phone or laptop typically prevails. I’m called away from the outdoors to follow up on emails, write, clean out the closets, run errands, and do the things that I also want to be doing and enjoy. More often than not, my time ends up getting sucked up in front of a screen. It’s a dance of responsibility and outdoor time, hobbies and outdoor time, interaction with my children on/off screens and outdoor time, paying bills and that outdoor time, job searches and outdoor time, tackling the mess that is my closets and attic and outdoor time. My time management could use some improvement. I’m going to try out the 50 minute focus routine as mentioned in this thoughtful blog post by Bone & Silver.
Each day, my outdoor time involves a hike or walk of some kind. These walks feel and smell SO lovely. While short and sweet, they feel as needed as my fresh cup of coffee each morning. Why? Because they perk me right up and get the blood flowing. Some of my best writing ideas come after a mind-clearing walk amongst my green pals-aka- the trees.
Hiking during the fall is so pleasant that I am always suggesting it to the point where my sons now roll their eyes every time I say the word hike. Try as I might, the kids don’t always want to go hiking when I do. We also had a situation yesterday where in two separate instances during our hike we were met by very aggressive unleashed dogs. I had collaboratively 150 lbs of children climbing up me, terrified and shrieking. Honestly, I’ve never been more terrified of dogs in my life and I’m a huge dog lover. I was really unsure as to how to position myself so that I would take the brunt of the dog bites vs. the three kids I was holding. As we were walking back to the car, my sons and their friend were talking about being scared to go hiking now. This is a bummer for obvious reasons.
The good news is, most of the trails I go on are dog free, however, I took my four year old to one today and he would not get out of the car. After trying to bribe him with candy, extra dessert after dinner, and anything else I could think of, I finally got him out of the car by saying that I would chase him around the whole lake. There went my peaceful and transcendent mom and son connection time. But I NEEDED that hike and I felt that he needed some outdoor time too. I was sure to show him a sign that read “No Dogs Allowed” on the way in, which helped as well.
I hope autumn lingers and winter stays at bay for a bit. These beautiful crisp days will continue to beckon and keep me and my family active. And now, my 50 minutes of screen time are just about up.