National Junior Ranger Day

Happy National Park Week!  And Happy National Junior Ranger Day!  The junior ranger program allows people of all ages to “explore, learn, and protect” your national parks by doing some activities to earn their badge. Each park offers different activities or programs.

(And yes, they really mean all ages as I did the program at a national park as an adult and even before having kids as I thought it was so cool!)

I highly recommend checking this program out the next time you visit a cool place within our national park system.

Cheers to National Park Week!

Wildflowers!

Last Sunday, we checked out the wildflowers blooming out in here in Northern California and the flowers did not disappoint!

Located about 10 miles north of Oroville, California, the North Table Mountain Ecological Reserve provided the amazing views along their trails of these wildflowers.

These 3,300 acres created by ancient lava flows provide beautiful vistas of these wildflowers, waterfalls, lava outcrops, and a rare type of vernal pool, called Northern Basalt Flow Vernal Pools.

It’s a popular area right now due to the blooms, so be prepared to park a distance and to take a ton of photos.

Loved seeing these wildflowers in bloom and getting out in nature with the family!

Hiking Stick

Since March, we have spent lots of time at home. And spent plenty of time dreaming of hiking and traveling again. To help get excited for future hikes, I made this fun hiking stick.  I have some real hiking poles, but thought it would be a fun activity to paint my own hiking stick.

My kids found this stick in our yard and discarded it for being too big for their project at the time.  I checked out the stick and it was a perfect size for hiking.

This stick was pretty smooth and didn’t need sanding, but some others might need to be sanded. I painted the sections and later sprayed it with a sealer. I opted with a colorful, rainbow look, but you could do any colors and patterns. You could even add stickers, ribbons, or other decorations to make it your own style.

Just thought I’d share a fun (and easy) hiking activity to do at home!

Bring a Friend 🐰👣❤️

A few weeks ago, our daughter brought Bunny along on a hike. This weekend, Lilly, a purple stuffed bunny, joined us. And Lilly got to ride a Barbie scooter in the air! Pretty lucky stuffed animal! Woody and Buzz would be jealous!

Pre-children, I would have laughed seeing a purple bunny on a scooter out on a hike.

Now, it seems normal. And it makes a hike so much more fun for a 7 year old! She loved bringing her friend along for our 3 mile hike!

“Mommy, take lots of pictures of Lilly!” So, I did! It made me smile too!

Bring a friend and enjoy a hike! 🐰👣And enjoy a smile! 😍

P.S. It’s also a great way to celebrate a birthday!

National Trails Day 👣

Happy National Trails Day today!  Today kicks off the Great Outdoors Month of June!

Did you know that there are over 18,000 miles of trails in the national park system? And did you know that there are 158,000 miles of trails in national forests and grasslands? So, we have lots of trails to explore in the United States!

Enjoy this day and month and find a trail to enjoy!  Happy National Trails Day! 👣☀️

Muir Woods

Search for the Fairies

A few weeks ago, we wanted to go on a hike with our two kids and my sister and her husband. After weeks of rain here, the sun had come out. So, we wanted to get outside and enjoy the sun and fresh air along the American River.

Our 7 year old little girl ran around the house getting supplies for this hike. No, she did not get a compass nor a map. She got her small brown shoulder purse, her little white stuffed bunny (named Bunny), lipstick (really just chapstick), and a plastic spoon.  She brought her supplies in the car for our hike.

On the trail, she announced that we were searching for fairies. Little fairies would like the trail, so we had to look out for them. Bunny helped look for them too. Every so many feet, she would stop, lift her hand to her forehead and search around an area.

After about a mile or so of hiking, she started to get a little low due to the lack of fairy sightings.  A little snack helped the spirits (which she did call it the cure). She kept on hiking and looking.

Then, we found the perfect tree. It had to be a fairy home.  The tree had a small hole facing us with dark green moss around it. We even saw some pixie dust inside it.  Our daughter took out the spoon and scooped up a very small bit of the pixie dust. Bunny even checked it out and agreed! She could not stop grinning.

Something fluttered nearby. It had to be a fairy or two even watching us hike. She knew that they were close.

We walked over a small bridge and something fluttered nearby. It had to be a water fairy or maybe the tree fairy following us.

Bunny cheered on the fairy trees, the fluttering sounds, and little bits of pixie dust. And our little girl smiled the rest of the hike and the day.

So, make sure to look for fairies and the magic of hiking the next time you are out on the trail!