Topophilia – a love of place (camping local)

Yesterday was my birthday… so we took a camping trip to a state park park to celebrate!

We had such a wonderful time… adventures everyday!

I would like to share how these experiences are helping us become a “wild family”.

  • We stayed in a campground that was only 2 hours from our home.  Because it is so close to our home, it has familiar landscapes; trees, plants, animals,geography.
  • This helps instill Topophilia – a love of place – we were becoming familiar with our local surroundings which instills a sense of belonging and creates a bond with nature.

  • As a family, we biked a 3 mile trail! 
  • In the past I would have opted-out, granted I usually had to stay with a baby/toddler.  It felt so amazing for me to ride with my children and husband and it was much easier than I expected!
  • Knowing that it was fun and easy makes me want to plan another bike ride… which is the idea… to become more “wild” – to spend more and more time outside, together!!!

  • This was actually a very difficult picture for me to take!  I was literally nauseous from fear of the children standing so close the edge of a rock cliff with water below!

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  • I was honest about how I felt and about how absurd it was for me to worry!
  • The drop-off wasn’t that far and the water was calm and the kids can swim… and I knew no one was going to spontaneously fall… but I still felt so afraid!

So – to tease me, the kids wanted me to take this next picture… HA HA HA!

  • I was slightly less nervous when they were atop of this rock!  But, we still let them climb all over these giant granite rocks without shouting “be careful” every other second (I only thought it).


Spending several days in nature without electronic devices was a wonderful way to celebrate my birthday!

What really made it wonderful was when we went on a 5 mile float trip… that… when we accidentally missed our pick up point (and didn’t know it because we have never floated before and couldn’t properly gauge time and distance)…turned into a 16 mile – lost somewhere where there is no other people around – kinda scary adventure… and we survived!

  • We paddled a raft for 16 miles… all my children helped… without complaint (a few tears when moments of desolation hit them) but as the sun was setting and arms were getting VERY tired, we all kept paddling!
  • A few moments of panic from various kids at various times but they were reassured that we would keep floating and eventually find a campsite along the river – which we did! We found a campsite host with a landline!
  • It was a great experience for us to have together that demonstrated working through fear and realizing that the elements weren’t going to kill us.
  • The VERY BEST PART was seeing a wild bald eagle!
  • …and I have been reading FableHaven to the children so everytime we saw dragon flies the younger kids would greet them with a “Hi Fairy”!
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