a wildflower preserve. see also our first hike of the year!

I wasn't sure what our hiking would look like this summer because: Dominic. Last year he was content enough inside the backpack and while he was getting heavier, sure, we split the time between the two of us and it was all fine. But he's even bigger now of course. And he's even more ornery. And he craves his independence something fierce. And he's just so strong so he can really put a hurting on someone if he wants to... So I had sort of assumed we wouldn't be able to do a darn thing in the way of hiking. 

That didn't stop me from trying because I'm insane. I did this very same hike last year just me and the kids which is case in point... But this year I at least acknowledged I would need one other adult with me should things go wrong. I found a companion in my sister-in-law. Yay! Some of these photos are hers of course.

So. I know you are reading this with baited breath. How did the hike go? Did Dominic scream and ruin it? Did he fall to his demise down the ravine? Were there many fits? How long did Laurie cry on the way home? Well well well. I shall tell you. 

It went great! Yup. Ash and I and the four kids just on a nice peaceful slash loud walk through the beautiful greenery checking out flowers, calling for butterflies. Dom asked to be carried a few times just because "he's so slow" and "he can't keep up" which are his words (also very surprising that he speaks, am I right?). He is by far the slowest walker of all my kids, moseying along at a glacial pace. This is a fact I just can't get over but no two kids are the same yeah?
At the end of the trail there was a tunnel with a creek running through it and we climbed down there and let the kids splash around a bit before heading back to the cars... Water always makes the kids just so happy. If I ever make that drive down there again I'll be sure to remember to let them wear their crocs. It's not a hard hike, they would have been fine wearing them. I could have been in flip flops. I will say the drive down there is still just as terrifying. Extremely bumpy dirt roads and hey no cell phone service! 
So for our very first hike of the season it went beyond any expectations. Dom may just be able to handle himself some shorter summer hikes and that makes me inordinately happy. Thanks Ash for humoring me and my cockamamie ideas. 

Oh and Dom and Mikayla held hands and all is right with the world.