My inspiration for this record of my days:

“The biggest mistake I made [as a parent] is the one that most of us make. . . . I did not live in the moment enough. This is particularly clear now that the moment is gone, captured only in photographs. There is one picture of [my three children] sitting in the grass on a quilt in the shadow of the swing set on a summer day, ages six, four, and one. And I wish I could remember what we ate, and what we talked about, and how they sounded, and how they looked when they slept that night. I wish I had not been in such a hurry to get on to the next thing: dinner, bath, book, bed. I wish I had treasured the doing a little more and the getting it done a little less” -Anna Quindlen

Monday, April 12, 2010

I can do hard things

Sometimes I forget who I used to be.  I forget that before I was a wife or a mother, I was a person.  There were things that I hoped and planned and loved.  Things that I did just for me.

One of the things that I loved was nature.  I loved camping and hiking…  just getting far away from civilization.  In college I would occasionally take “mountain appreciation” days.  I would ditch all my classes and head for the hills. 

This weekend was a long-overdue mountain appreciation weekend.  Jeff and I went with several members of his family on a backpacking trip to a place called Powers Garden.

On the way there, somehow I ended up driving a four wheeler.  I had planned on riding, but I was needed to drive.  They told me “If it gets too scary for you, don’t worry about it.  Just stop, and one of us will get you up (or down) the scary part.”  Well guess what?  I did the whole thing myself!  I thought I might die a couple of times, but I did it!  I kept repeating in my mind “I CAN DO HARD THINGS!” It’s a motto I borrowed from the general relief society president, I think.  And it worked!  Thus the title of this post.

1970-01-01 15.06.21 

Here are a few other “hard things” that I found out I can do.

I can hike for 4+ miles with a backpack heavy enough to leave bruises on my hips… along a trail that had been very recently used by a mountain lion!

I can stay in a really cool 100 year old cabin whose regular tenants are, apparently, mice and raccoons.1970-01-01 11.20.44

I can drink water, filtered from the stream, that had a brownish greenish tint to it. (It actually tasted really good!)

I can spend all night with my freezing legs curled up into a ball small enough to keep tucked into my coat.  (A little yoga in the morning got them all stretched out again.)

I can listen to hunting stories around the fire that were spoken in  an authentic American Redneck dialect.  You know, like “I aint never seen nothin’ like it!”

And I loved every minute of it!  Seriously… I kept turning to Jeff all weekend to say “This is fun!”

Some other highlights include:

Riding a horse.

1969-12-31 17.01.26

Splashing through the creek as the trail wound back and forth across it.

Watching the campfire burn green from the aluminum that got tossed in it.

Seeing millions of stars in the sky!

Spreading out a blanket to take a nap on the banks of the creek.

This trip was just what I needed.  My body feels challenged, my mind feels rested, and my heart feels rejuvenated by the beauty and stillness of nature.


  1. And you can wear camo! hahahaha! I bet your boys think you are the coolest mom ever!

  2. It was such a fun time and you did do hard things!! I'm looking forward to another hike!