Adventure For All Ages A Mother's Guide

When an adventurous spirit becomes a new parent they often worry that they’ll no longer be able to get adventure like they used to. I’m here to tell you that that’s wrong! All children develop at their own rate but as time passes they will in turn hit certain milestones that deem them capable of new and exciting activities.

Just imagine the first year of their life, from rolling over to learning to sit up and crawl around. Before you know it you're jumping headfirst into the toddler years when they learn to pull themselves up, walk around, attempt to dance, and climbing on practically everything in sight. Oh but it doesn't stop there! It only gets more intimidating as they enter their preschooler years. They learn to run and jump without losing their balance, and they can now dip, duck and dodge-making the game of tag a daily routine. Once they hit five years old they are considered a big kid, capable of joining you on many of your adventures and learning the ropes one step at a time.

If you’re unsure about what activities your child is ready for then this guide will give you an idea of the safe things to do as your child grows and develops over the years.

The Baby - 0 to 12 Months

When you have a newborn baby it’s pretty common to be overwhelmed and wiped out during those first few months but by the time the dust settles and you catch your breath their wobbly little heads are a little bit steadier and their eyes are taking in everything you throw their way.

Invest in a baby carrier and take your babe to a stream or river, show it the water gushing through the rocks. Go for a stroll under the forest canopy and let the sounds and colors of birds keep them dazzled for hours on end. Instead of dangling a toy in front of their eyes, dangle the world. Immerse them young so the outdoors can always be a haven for them as they grow.

The Toddler - 1 to 2 Years

Once they reach their toddler years you will constantly fret as they try their hand at walking, stumbling, and eventually running. This milestone means that it’s finally time to break out of your comfort zone and let them pick their way through rocks and roots. Let them get their hands dirty, start a garden in your backyard and let them feel the magic of the earth.

When they hit the two year mark they should be jumping, kicking, and dancing around, this will allow you to start taking them on longer adventures that will delight and exhaust them. Rent a two person kayak or canoe and take them out on a lake! You can even teach them to toss in a line and hold a fish in their hands for the first time.

The Preschooler - 3 to 4 Years

Ah, yes... the preschooler years, this is the time when you should really let them cut loose. Now that they are old enough to start requesting specific trips and activities you'll get a better idea of the adventures they love making it easier for you to help fuel that fire!

Believe it or not, a great activity to teach your little one at this point is a skill like skiing or snowboarding. Yes, it will be scary, and yes, they will fall, but once they get a hang of it they will spend hours on the slopes passing you up and wearing themselves out. Another great activity that isn’t as spendy as a day at the mountain is bouldering at your local rock gym! There is normally a kids section and it’s a great way to spend a rainy day, you can even let them invite a friend or two.

The Big Kid - 5 and Up

At this point in their life your kiddo is about ready to try the easy version of almost any activity you want to do with them. (As long as it’s safe!) They will be accustomed to spending their summer months outside camping, hiking, and exploring the world and most likely they’ll want to start bringing their friends along too. Now your hikes can be longer and your adventures more memorable as you watch them fall in love with the outdoors time and time again.

As a new mother who loves spending time outdoors my children will spend their summers camping, hiking, and spending as much time as they want in the lush forests of the Pacific Northwest. My theory is start them young and always fuel their fire! Children don’t need video games or television, they need dirt on their hands and rips in their jeans.

Created By
Casea Peterson

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