Out side in all weather. Really? All weather... 

Lately we've been having some cold, wet weather and lots no-show meet ups for the Family Nature Club. This time we met at the Regional Park, which was my most popular outing last time, but this time no one. I told myself the same thing I've been saying so often the last two months: its just the cold weather. 

I know how tempting it is to just say home, especially with hot/cold weather. Some times I wonder if I wasn't hosting these events, how committed I would be. Not just because of the weather, so many great activities and important responsibilities are vying for our attention. With kids, just getting out the door on a perfect day can be a challenge. What more when we think about all the extra preparation and work of dealing with the rain. But the truth is: We can always think of an excuse. Rarely is there the perfect weather or time of day or season. There can always be a reason why we don’t do something and I’m guilty of it myself. 

I’ve been reading about programs that have an “outside in all weather” philosophy. Even to me, the idea seemed ambitious, but I’ve really opened up to it.. slowly. But I know its important to get outside even when the weather isn’t the perfect sunny 75 degrees because if we wait for only those days, we would rarely be outside. It's not easy but I’ve made a little commitment to myself to not make excuses anymore. Sometimes I find myself making excuse like "she's too young - it will be easier next year when she keeps her hat on and doesn’t fall down into puddles." But next  year, there will just be another excuse and another.
No more excuses. 

Family Nature Club Reflection 4.0

We're now two months into our family nature club, so I thought it would be a good time to introduce some routines, traditions, and activities. I want to keep our outings relaxing and mostly unstructured, but I also want to support traditions and routines the kids can become familiar and comfortable with. After reading the Coyote's Guide, one way I choose to do this was by creating our own group version of a sit spot.

The idea behind a sit spot is that its a place you visit frequently; a space you can really get to know and build attachment with. One of my favorite things about a sit spot is if you consistently visit over a long enough period of time, you can observe the subtle changes that happen through the seasons and over the years. 

I decided that I would try out this practice with our group by choosing one place we visit monthly throughout the year. My sit spot choice was the regional park because when we have met here in the past its a popular outing. Also, its somewhere most people in our community know about. Plus, it's along the river which means its great for seasonal change.

Visiting once a month might not be develop a sit spot to its full potential but in a casual group with limited consistency, its a good start. Hopefully it will provide an opportunity to introduce the sit spot idea and encourage families and the children to find their very own sit spot that they can visit alone more often.

Last week was the Graco event to promote the new Little Lounger, hosted by Chelsea at Some Day I’ll Learn. I joined a group of local mommy bloggers to get together, talk about this new product, and listen to our stylist talk about some great fashion tips for those extra fifteen minutes the Little Lounger will give you. But what is a mommy with a toddler that wears black yoga pants every day doing here? My toddler might not fit the Little Lounger and I might not be the biggest fashionista in town, but I had a great time. Here’s why.

You would have a hard time convincing me that I “need” to spend more than 10 minutes getting ready each morning. But I do enjoy spending time for myself occasionally and feeling good about myself, even if my style isn’t exactly fashionable. I loved our stylist, Sandra at Mariposa personal styling mostly because she started out with tips for “lounge wear” or “work-out chic.” PERFECT! Personally, I own three pairs of pants (all the same: black yoga pant) and some pair of leggings. Okay, I own more than that, but they either have not fit since pre-pregnancy or I just don’t like them. 
Now about that Little Lounger. I love baby-wearing and attachment parenting, but some times new-mommy needs to take a bathroom break, drink that coffee at a safe distance, or tackle that ever growing to do list. When you need just fifteen minutes, the Little Lounger is a go-to product.

What I love about this: easily folds, comfortable and safe place for baby, and the Rock Locks™. When my baby was a little baby, we had a swing, which sat idle because I didn’t want to leave my baby in the room alone and what use is the swing if you have to sit next to it in the room and do nothing. The Little Lounger can easily fold and move around the house so baby is never out of reach. Second, the Little Lounger is an elevated space for baby to lay. I used to move our little co-sleeper bassinet around the house, but it wasn’t elevated and two dogs meant it couldn’t just sit on the floor either. Last, the Little Lounger is has this feature called Rock Lock, so that it can be rocked back and forth or locked into place when needed.

Here’s a picture that captures my daughters thoughts on the Little Lounger (photo by: Shannon at The Mommy-files).