Why is it important to come alive outside? Reach back into your memories and what stands out to you? I learned to enjoy hard work from my dad because he made it a game. Getting wood for the winter was fun because carrying it to the wood pile was a competition to see who could carry the most and get back with another pile the fastest. Then we’d get to have a huge brushfire when night came, and we’d gather around to eat hot dogs and watch the fire reach to the sky. How about finding a grapevine to swing out over the creek? Did you ever have a favorite tree? Mine was a weeping willow in the backyard and it belonged to me, so Mom wasn’t allowed to cut a switch from it to use on me. I’d climb up there and sit for hours just thinking. I used to wonder if my knees would always have scabs on them or if there was a possibility of healing. “No one’s ever skinned their knees playing the Wii.” What about the feeling of picking the first mess of beans and digging new potatoes from the garden and having them with fresh tomatoes, green onions and peppers all because you had the privilege of putting seed into the ground and nurturing it to produce? Think of the poetry that would never have been written if not for being able to look at a blue sky or a thunderstorm or walk through the woods on a crisp autumn day with leavings crunching on your feet or by a flower garden in spring with blooms all around you? What would it be like to never roll down a hill and come up covered in freshly cut grass? What can compare to the learning experiences of nature? Take a child on a walk and you will be amazed to see things through his eyes and you’ll remember why we truly do come alive outside.
– Linda Coors