Before kids, my husband and I would spend so many weekends hiking and camping in the mountains. It was our main activity that connected us and we have always valued our time in the mountains together.
Then the kiddos came.
We tried SO much in the first year to integrate Andreas into our life. We bought a backpack for hikes, but only day hikes because backwoods camping with a baby is not ideal, to say the least.
Then Theo came along and Andreas decided he didn't like walking, so now we go on really short "hikes", ones where he can usually bring a bike. We bought a bigger tent so that we could all fit because two adults and a baby in a two-person ultra-lightweight tent is NOT ideal (trust me we tried it) and we started camping at campgrounds. I remember when we first did this, my husband referred to it as "car camping" and I told him that most people just call it "camping". We've experienced countless early morning escapes from our campsite with a screaming child in tow and in the past year, sleepless nights with a toddler who doesn't do well out of his own crib (sorry to everyone in the campground).
During our last camping trip, we rented a trailer to help with the nonsleeping toddler, in the campground that was literally in town. After a 30-minute canoe ride attempt with one kid who was trying to get out of the boat and into the water and the other who was screaming because he was afraid we were going to fall into the water I said ENOUGH.
As much as I love my kids, I still want to do the things I used to do...even if only on the odd occasion. I reminded my husband that it's been SIX YEARS since we've been on an overnight hike together, so let's forget the kids for a weekend and do something just the two of us.
So we did it. We hiked up 12 km to a beautiful glacier lake where we....wait for it...HUNG OUT. That's right, we sat on a log and talked, Mike fished, we cooked dinner and ate it out of the pot, had a drink and bathed in the sunshine. That evening we crawled into our sleeping bags in our tent (hello old friend!), listened to music, ate some chocolate and rested our tired legs.
Saying that the overnight hike was nice is an understatement. After 5 years of being a mom with minimal time away from my kids it was like popping my head up for air and going, oh yeah, this is the person I used to be, there is the man I went on all these adventures with and guess what, we're still the same, but with different conversations and more love.
We had such a good time and it was a great reminder that our relationship is something we need to work on, something that we shouldn't take for granted, and something we need to devote time to, away from our kids.
Let me know how you and your partner continue growing your relationship even after kids, we could all use a little motivation and encouragement! ❤️