Saturdays could easily turn into just another day in the week. We could spend our time cleaning, doing projects around the house and running errands, but instead Saturdays have become our day to invest in our most important priority-our family. On a typical Saturday, we try to leave the house early and head for the mountains. Depending on a variety of factors; the weather, our energy levels etc. we set out on a hike for the day. On this particular day, we hiked a total of nine miles. We hiked to a beautiful alpine lake called Melakwa. On our way up, while Jasper took a nap, I took time to document just a few of the wildflowers we saw. Once he was awake, amidst cascading waterfalls and scenic vistas we practiced his animal sounds.
All along the lush trail we spotted all types of berries and flowers galore. I was reminded how abundant and freely given nature is and made big plans to make some evergreen tip lemonade once we were back at home.
In the quiet moments during our ascent, when Jasper is sleeping I have time to ponder my life. These simple days spent in the mountains are truly some of the best days of my life. With just the sound of birds chirping, a cool breeze against my cheek and my heart thumping in my chest I feel most alive. We all retain strength from different things, but being amongst the trees is the most restorative place I can be.
Once you are up in the mountains you quickly realize there is an entire network of alpine lakes. One day, when we have no restraints on our time I would love to spend a week up there visiting a handful of alpine lakes at once.
Having a child has been such a beautiful learning process both as individuals and as a couple. I am grateful for the time we had to cement our love before Jasper came along, but I am also grateful for how much he enhances everything about our lives now. From his excitement at spotting a chipmunk to the way he makes us laugh. There is no greater sense of purpose than fiercely loving a beautiful child you created together.
Depending on the clouds and light, the color of the water changes at the alpine lakes.
At every stage of Jasper's life I think to myself this is the best stage only for a new stage to come along and then that is my new favorite. I adore his strong sense of self and his desire to be independent. I love to watch him figure out how to use hiking poles or see how much he loves to engage with people and make them laugh. Jasper is quickly becoming his own little person before my very eyes. I could cry at how proud I feel and how honored I am that I get to be the recipient of his unconditional love and kindness. The very thought of him one day growing up and leaving home makes me choke up.
No matter how hard we try we can never give those sweet cheeks enough kisses. Jasper has recently discovered the fun of kissing on the lips and does the most adorable thing by coming in 90% for a kiss and then waiting for you to steal one. I don't think it is humanly possible to love this child any more.
Whenever Jasper is excited about something in nature (this time it was a little chipmunk) I feel as though I am doing exactly what I set out to do when he was born. If he can establish a love for nature and being active now, it will be a blessing to him the rest of his life.
It is my goal to learn the names of all the wildflowers I regularly see, but until then I will just make bouquets along the trail and call them pretty.
I am grateful for rejuvenating days in the mountains and unconditional love from my boys. Hiking just like life is beautiful, in all seasons.