Wow, what an amazing week! Nine days, and 2500 miles worth of Rocky Mountain high with my 13, 12,10, and 4 year old sons and my “mature” father (who wants his age withheld!) I was the chief cook and backpack stuffer to the boyhood dream trip. Of a lifetime.
We hiked a few miles, built multiple fires, and saw many, many wild animals—just about enough to break Grandad. He had promised a cash reward for every elk, moose, or mountain sheep spotted. He was grateful that he waited to set his rate until a few days of spotting work had passed. When two of the boys passed 500 elk sightings, his rate was conveniently set at a penny a head!
I saw on AOL a few days ago about a new book release titled Fifty Dangerous Things You Should let your Children Do. As the only female on board for this journey, I felt compelled to follow the author’s advice. Let the boys be boys, you know.
So I did not flinch when they wanted to use hand sanitizer to build a fire and grill tortillas and cookies. I didn’t even stop them when they walked on the logs over the creek. And I didn’t complain when I was left to hand wash the jeans and tennis shoes that surprisingly landed in the creek. I felt like Supermama!
But when the stable attendant chose the biggest horse in all of Estes Park for me while all of my boys were riding ponies or small mounts, I almost complained. After swallowing my fear of heights and enduring five minutes of this terror, I almost stopped the wagon train and paid extra to have someone take me back to the barn.
Then I saw Josiah’s cute little face beaming up at me as he rode on the back of his horsey, and my heart melted. I decided that I would find that place of adventure buried deep inside me, tap into it, and stick with the ride for 55 more minutes. But somebody better have a ladder to get me down at the end, I muttered to myself.