Why #OutdoorFamilies Matter

I haven’t been able to get this tweet out of my head since I read it this morning:


This is why I get off the couch when it’s cold and snowy.

This is why I’m outside in the yard even though the house is a mess.

This is why I pack up the camper over and over all summer long–even though I have a perfectly nice home (that probably needs cleaning).

It’s all about the memories. 

In an article titled “Sharing Memories as Gifts: Treasures to Last a Lifetime” published by Outdoor Families Magazine, Suzanne Solsona gets at this issue of memories when she asks,

Without thinking too much about it: What is your most vivid, cherished memory of childhood? Your teenage years? As an adult?

She argues that those memories are related to what we did–not what we had. I’d go one step further and say that many of my own most vivid memories were about what I did outside. Like the tweet above suggests, when I think of my favorite memories, they aren’t of television or movies (even though I’m a major fan of both). They aren’t about things I did inside at all. Instead, I remember…

  • Reading a book by the campfire with my parents on Foote Pond.
  • Sleeping on the Lake Huron beach as a teenager (admittedly not all that comfortable).
  • Hiking with my son to the top of his namesake mountain–only to realize he’d fallen asleep on the way.
  • Seeing amazement on my sons’ faces when they first saw Mt. Rushmore.
  • Getting swept up in my kids’ glee as they flew down snow-covered hill on their sleds.

These are the things I remember–and the things I hope my sons remember, too. These memories are the reason my family is an #OutdoorFamily.


What are your reasons for getting outdoors? Are you an #outdoorfamily–or aspiring to be? 



13 thoughts on “Why #OutdoorFamilies Matter

  1. I do believe that “memories are related to what we did–not what we had”. It is like in the act of doing, rather than obtaining, it is embedded in our psyche. When we see photographs of what we did, it seems to renew the same feelings we had when doing previously.
    I like the “noises” of the outdoors, especially without cars being a part of it!


    • It’s a bit frightening how challenging it is to get away from all of those noises these days–from the sounds of industry to the cell phones binging in people’s pockets. We spend a lot of our summers in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula where there isn’t much industry and little cell reception–heaven! Of course, the kids spend the first hour complaining they’re bored…but then they spend the rest of the time building forts and exploring. I love watching that boredom shift.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes. That is so true. I so love this post. I am not a mom yet but my big family has been a tight-knitted one. 🙂 We mostly go to occasions/event together and it surely create great memories.

    Those kids are adorable.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks–the sleeping one is an old photo now, but it’s a favorite memory I couldn’t resist including. My husband & I were just having a conversation this morning about our son’s upcoming birthday and our plans for a gift that is an experience rather than a thing. It’s not as much fun to unwrap, but hopefully he’ll remember it long after he’s forgotten a toy. You’re fortunate to have a family who does things together!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I feel really passionate about this subject – that experiences outweigh any kind of material possessions or sitting in front of the TV! We won’t be on our deathbeds saying how fulfilled we feel from having watched TV reruns or the car we owned. Great post!


    • I find I have to continually remind myself, though, how important getting outside really is. There are so many other things that I think I should be doing–but, in the end, no one will care if my house is clean. My kids won’t be young forever. I can catch up on my to-do list when they’re all grown up! Thanks for your thoughts!


    • I love bumping into “locals” here in the blogosphere! 🙂 Thanks for the nominations. I’m slow about getting to those, but I’ll do my best to pay it forward! I look forward to reading more of your thoughts.

      Liked by 1 person

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