Daily life with a toddler is like riding a roller coaster; sometimes it’s the most fun you’ve ever had, sometimes it’s conquering your greatest fear, and sometimes you just want to throw your hands in the air and scream. One thing is for certain, life with a toddler is not what you would call “easy.”
To keep my hyperactive baby busy, I tried hiking and outdoors. Not only will you get to share a mini adventure and create a memory, but you’ll also help him discover the outdoors — and burn off some his extra energy. If kids get to experience the rush of exploring, the pleasure of free play with dirt, rocks, streams, and trees, they’ll have a personal stake in conservation. Just looking at natural scenes helps stressed-out kids cope, and the more wilderness they see, the bigger the effect. Exposure to the natural world has also been linked with better moods, better focus, and higher levels of self-discipline.
But trekking with a toddler requires a bit of planning to ensure that everyone leaves the trail smiling and not in tears. Here are a few tips to get you started.
Choose your Journey: Take the time to find a trail that’s appropriate for your child. You could use a trail you are already familiar with, but if you branch out and try a new one, it can be a new experience for both of you. If you’re planning to bring a stroller, keep that in mind when selecting a trail.
Pack lightly: First, consider how you will be traveling on the trail. Will you be taking a stroller or a backpack? Be sure to wear comfortable shoes and pack water and healthy snacks for both of you. Pick snacks that can be eaten on the go, first-aid kit and a few plastic bags to collect treasures and any trash you create. You can keep the diaper bag in the car so you don’t have to carry it around, but you may want to stick in a few diapers and wipes in your backpack, just in case.
Plan for fun: While your little one will enjoy spending time with you in a new environment, it is still a good idea to plan special activities to do along the trail. If you are hiking in the fall, collect leaves of different colors. Go on a rock hunt and look for interesting stones, then put them in a bag to take home, wash, and examine more closely. You can pick flowers, collect dirt, look for frogs, or watch for birds. Take cues from your child and listen to what your child is interested in.
Be safe As on any hike, stay safe. Take time to teach safety lessons along the way. Have fun but be smart while creating this great memory.
You might also like to read: Scree-Free Activities for Kids
Author: Priyanka Mohanty
Motherhood has been an amazing journey so far; each day, an adventure of sorts. After a stint in marketing and marketing communications, I am currently a stay at home mom, blogger, traveller and chef. Never thought I would be happy to call myself a SAHM! Right now, my 24/7 job is being a mom. I am here to share my thoughts and experiences on parenting, life and ways we could improve our lives. When I’m not reorganizing the drawers or handling tantrums, I can be found writing about health, nutrition, beauty and wellness. Also, I am an endangered bookworm who loves nothing more than finding the perfect solution to life’s little conundrums in books and nature.