adventures with kids

Yesterday a lot of families I know, chose to #optoutside.  I am proud of all of you! I’ve never once taken part in a Black Friday sale and being outdoors or some where with my family has always been my first choice of holiday activity.

We hiked around at Summit Tree Farm for hours yesterday and even found a bobcat skull! Which of course had to come home with us!

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We love adventuring with our kids. People often ask me how we do it, and some times look at me as though I might just be crazy.

As far back as I can remember I’ve always loved to hike.  Pre-kids I loved to rock climb, backpack, camp and jump off of things into various bodies of water.  Evidence:


Crater Lake, circa 1995


That’s me up in Washington State. In the background is Rex. circa 2004









In the Crater Lake picture, that’s me on the right. That water was cold.  I got that photo from my old yearbook, if anyone has the original, I would love to get my hands on it.

I promised myself that once I had kids the adventures wouldn’t stop.  Then we took Miles hiking for the first time and it was hell. Nursing a fussing baby on the side of the trail, both of us sweaty and miserable.  As he grew we thought it might get easier and well, who were we kidding, it only got harder in those first couple years. Until one fateful day we bought a Kelty child carrier off of Craigslist and the game was forever changed.  Although, I am pretty sure Miles’ diaper leaked on this hike and the pee went down my husband’s back, we were still learning.  Once Nolan was born we were professionals.  We would have Miles in the Kelty and Nolan in the Ergo.  I even mastered the skill of nursing while hiking, no need to stop on the side of the trail any more.

At 11 months old we took Miles camping for the first time. We used my Kelty 2 man backpacking tent and all 3 of us attempted to sleep in there together. All I can say is never again. I love that tent, I’ve had it for 15 years and my husband and I used it for a recent backpacking trip we took, but it is NOT a family tent. Evidence:



For family trips we went big and bought the Coleman Instant Tent.  It’s huge and ridiculous, but for all 4 of us plus our dog, it’s perfect and my husband actually can set the whole thing up in 5 mins. Hallelujah!

We’ve taken our boys camping 9 times in the last 6 years and they love it.  Nolan was just 3 months old the first time he camped. Trust me, it hasn’t been easy (one year warranted a trip to the ER and a staple in Nolan’s head).  We have slowly added to our gear and over the years and as the boys have grown, it’s developed into a fun adventure for all of us.  This last year we camped 3 times and hiked too many times to count. Both of our kids have outgrown the Kelty backpack and it has made its way to a new home. We still use the Ergo for Nolan for those moments when he just couldn’t possibly go on.

I would love nothing more than to help parents who have hesitations about taking their kids, hiking, camping or on any sort of adventure. There are SO many beautiful places to go and so many adventures to be had! Please feel free to contact me with your questions, I am happy to help!

Let’s all get outside!


  1. Can’t agree with you more, and whilst we’ve also taken our kids camping 9 times in the last 6 years, 7 of those times have been all on our cross-country trek across the USA. 🙂 One day, a joint camping trip we will have, don’t you think? Maybe someplace in the middle like Crater Lake?

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