Every week we try to cultivate a different activity as a family. It always looks different, but there's always something to look forward to. What follows is a picture of 8 weeks in the life of Joe and Heidi White.
On one particular week, Josiah and I went on a 12 mile run. Josiah biked while I ran. I really "bonked" due to the heat and lack of nutrition, and Josiah was nothing but encouraging and my constant cheerleader! He kept yelling, "good job, Daddy! Keep fighting." I don't think I would have continued running without him!
On another occasion we went with some great friends to Yosemite for a day of sitting under trees, playing with a soccer ball, drinking coffee, and walking along trails. When we go to Yosemite, we don't always need to hammer it an do big things. Sometimes the best way to explore a place is to slow down and sit for long periods of time and pay attention to everything that you see!
During another week we went hiking along a trail through a forest filled with Sequoia trees. It's an amazing trail that winds itself through dozens of majestic old growth trees. Sometimes walking slowly and taking time to touch every tree is all we need to experience the presence of God.
In another week our family went on a hike up to Mitchell Peak in the Jennie Lakes Wilderness. It gains 2000ft and while Joe hammered 8 miles of trail running, Heidi hiked with the kids only to be reunited at the summit.
In the week following, we spent a Saturday spending time at Shaver Lake. Joe ran 12 miles on a beautiful trail and then we spent the day as a family playing at the lake.
Not every week is an adventure in the mountains. This was the first day of school at Jackson Elementary. Every new school year we always sing at the top of our lungs in the living room before school, "First day of school, first day of school, everybody is cool on the first day of school!" Starting school always feels like an adventure!
...speaking of family. In a following week we spent the day hiking with Jameson and Sarah and our wonderful nieces in Sequoia National Park. Most of the time was spent laughing, talking about life, talking about faith, and admiring all that God has created. These are some of our favorite memories as a family -- spending time with our extended family in wild places.
In another week, we spent the weekend with some great friends at Courtright Reservoir. Courtright is at 8200ft elevation and located in one of the most superb geological areas of California. Bare granite domes rise from the shores and above the deep canyon cut by Helms Creek located at the north end of the lake. Ice Age glaciers sculpted the mountain peaks, slopes and valleys giving them their unique shape. We love it there. Our time with our friends included fireside chats, great food, axe chopping competitions, and playing games. It was wonderful.
Sometimes though, it's the simple adventures which stand out. On this occasion while Heidi and Josiah did a 10 mile trail run, I took the kids on a long and slow walk on a beautiful trail. We talked a lot about what it means to set goals and not stop until the job was done. We are so proud of the kids God has entrusted us to love. It's a beautiful life!
These are good days.