Family holding hands atop a mountain at sunset

5 Reasons to Get Outside on Summer Nights

Author: Jessica Woolwine
Published Date: Tuesday, July 18, 2017

This spring, the kids and I made a conscious effort to get outside more.

We go for walks at least four times a week. Some nights, we wander down by the pond and look for turtles. Other times, we go to the playground. Now that the pool is open, we can easily clean up dinner and head for a quick dip.

Henry, bless his heart, is worse than the dog when I say, “Wanna go for a walk?” He turns, scurries to the front door and is halfway into his side of the double stroller before I can get his shoes on. It’s adorable.

You know what I’ve noticed about our summer walks? 

1. The exercise is good for everyone. Jackson rides his bike on the path in front of us, and boy, has he gotten stronger, faster. When we stop at     the park, I get to do “Mommy PT” with Abby on the stairs and Henry can get out some energy running around like the crazy toddler he is. The exercise gets out three sets of sillies and makes bath time and bedtime easier once we’re home.

2. You’ll make new friends. The more you expand your life experiences, the more people you expose yourself to. We’re getting to know our neighbors beyond a quick smile and wave.

3. Getting outside energizes the imagination. Abby will take a doll to the park and push her in the baby swing. Henry’s vocabulary is exploding as he fits mulch through slots of the playground equipment. Jackson is inventing new games with his buddies. I find myself daydreaming and brainstorming as well.

4. It’s a good teaching experience. We taste the honeysuckle. Count the bunnies. Look left, right and left again before crossing the street. The slower pace provides time to teach.

5. I have more patience to finish the evening. There’s something about sweating outside that clears my head and resets my patience. When we get back from a walk, I have the energy to do baths, bedtimes, pack lunches for the next day and maybe even fit in a load of laundry.

The fresh air and distraction is a game changer. Give it a try. Shake it up. But most importantly, find what works for your family.

You might just find a new routine that doesn’t feel routine at all.

Make healthy habits a family priority. Check out these fun ideas for family activity.

About Jessica Woolwine

Jessica Woolwine is a native of Hampton Roads and lives in Hampton with her three “miracles” Jackson (9), Abby (5) and Henry (1). As a mother to a childhood cancer survivor and a micro-preemie, she began the blog Mothering Miracles in 2014 to support other families dealing with health issues. Jessica also works as Creative Director for Rubin Communications Group and enjoys mixing her talents for graphic design and creative writing with community relations. She is a past member of both the CHKD Family Advisory Council and the CHKD NICU Family Advisory Council.