walkdriftwood eggcase horseshoe labyrinth marshsun photo 3 seagrass shoreline sunsetEverybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul.

– John Muir

Yesterday was one of those teasing days that Lady Virginia likes to throw about from time to time- absolutely beautiful weather, about sixty degrees, and sunny. Today we’re supposed to be prepping for a snow storm and sub zero temperatures. But yesterday. Yesterday was gorgeous.

We ventured out to this little tucked away jewel with the grandparents. It’s a trail that leads through a marsh and then out on to an amazing old natural beach- you can still see the old cypress stands on the shoreline. We wandered and walked and scrambled over the dunes and brought plenty of treasures home to look up in our nature books.

When my husband and I first met, we spent most of our time out of doors hiking through the mountains near our college- fact was, you could barely get us indoors. We fully expected that as we got married and children came along, this would continue, but somehow it didn’t. I’ve thought about this more than once since moving down here. Most of the nature preserves were a drive and a half for us up there in Tennessee. Not only that, but as lovely as our mountain neighborhoods were, there were no proper sidewalks. And children. Six children. Six children that took half an hour to march out a door. We rarely walked the neighborhoods (so dangerous with the hills and lots of young short children with us and not enough hands) and we maybe got to the local park about once a month. It wasn’t what we wanted but it was all we could do.

We love our neighborhood so much. The park is a short walk from our house, and the entire neighborhood is walking friendly. There are more than four local nature preserves within five to ten miles of our home. So this dream we’ve always had for our family- to get out of doors as often as possible- finally happening. Everyday. At least once a day we walk, and more often than not, we’re out at the park or exploring the preserves around here. Truly a gift.

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Grandview Nature Preserve

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