There's a wood near our home that is small enough that it's a near impossibility to get lost.
We like to let our children lead us when we go walking there.
Ethan, in particular, loves the freedom and independence.
And we take joy in watching them explore and relish the outdoors. I just love seeing them lead.
One thing I've learnt as a parent is how important I feel it is for children to be given the freedom to choose. To let them know that we trust their judgement and to see that confidence grow in them as we let them make choices watched by us.
One day they'll be without us and will need to make those same kinds of decisions, and I want them to feel equipped to do so.
I love that when I've been looking back at these photos that they demonstrate some of the fundamental values that I want them to feel as our children.
That we trust them. That we are there to guide them. And that when they're too tired to carry on, that we'll always be there for them.
Sometimes I feel like there's not enough time to teach them all that I want them to know. That something major will be left out. But luckily I still have a lot of days to try and let them know the ways I love them and my hopes for them.
Oh, and that I'll still carry them without complaint even when dandelion clocks get pushed into my hair.
Good thing I have a sweet husband who would rather not be embarrassed by his wife :)
And MAN, have I missed the sun. That and barefoot, carefree kids.
Summer is here. And I'm going to enjoy all those minutes spent with my independent, free-spirited, dandelion-clock-loving children.