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What our trip to Zions National Park taught me about being a parent

Monday, June 3, 2019

There we were, bumpity bump, in the shuttle on our way through Zions National Park headed up to walk through a canyon in the summertime with two little ones in tow!  It was going to be a LONG day, I thought, but hey, we are checking something off the bucket list.

All of the red rock cliff sides are just so majestic and breathtaking.

 



I wanted to stop at every turn and grab some beautiful landscape shots.





Matt and I took turns to juggle the kids as we started on the hike.  There are times that being a parent is seriously a work out.  And I guess that is good in a way because you tend to not have as much time to work out realistically so they keep you active.



We had a blast wading in the water to hike up the canyon. The water was cold but seeing as it was SOOO hot, like 90 degrees or so, it felt amazing.



It was so pretty watching the little waterfalls trickle down in a sprinkle on the canyon walls. They sparkled with the shine of the sunlight catching them.





My straw hat gave out this trip.  Started falling apart on me.  Floppy useless as can be. But still a bit functional.  And I ran out of the last of my contacts, so I wore my glasses the last part of this trip as well, which is something I do not usually do.

I've learned that as we have more kids, the harder it is to keep up my own personal look.  But hey! We only came to get all muddy anyway right?

As we hiked further up the canyon, the water would get deeper at times.  At one point it was up to our hips.  And we just floated in there with the kids and got all kinds of muddy.  Between juggling two kids who are just 18 months apart and simply enjoying the mud, I didn't get pictures.



One of the things that going on trips to nature locations is so wonderful for our family is the simplicity of it.  Together we are enjoying the mud, the view, the cool rock my kid found and wants me to see it as the treasure they esteem it to be.  The stick they are excitedly waving around and the joy they find by riding atop dads shoulder or simply trying something they haven't gotten to try before.

Going out in nature has us working together and enjoying the elements of God's great and beautiful creation together.  If we have to climb up some rocks and help each other to do so, it becomes teamwork.  When we have sweated out a long hike together, we share the joy of that beautiful view together.  Along the way, we might throw in a few analogies and teach a few life lessons to our kids that they can now physically relate to and hopefully remember better because of it.



Some of the happiest times that I have had with my kids have been out in nature, playing in the mud, skipping rocks, climbing trees.  Don't get me wrong, the playground, Disneyland, etc has its fun perks, but something about being forced to slow down and be away from electronics and more developed area, not only connects us closer to the earth but to each other in our discoveries.

And that my kids are happiest with that connection.  I have learned that have you be disconnected from your devices and busy to-do lists enjoying making mudpies brings them the greatest joy.  Pure one on one.





Enjoying the awe of the red rock together I will never forget... my kids might, but that is why I am so keen on documenting our family adventures to share with them down the road.









One of these days I hope to photograph a bride and groom or wedding here in the beauty of Zions National Park.



















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