1000 Hours Outside.

A certain challenge caught my eye and I decided to pursue it this year for the sake of my family. It is the 1000 Hours Outside challenge (as explained on 100 Hours Outside Blog).

Since we love to be outside, I figured it would be perfect! The challenge encourages all of us to to step away from screen time — because it is very prevalent among children and adults in today’s world — and spend 1000 hours a year in outside play. Screen time isn’t really an issue in our house, but pushing ourselves to be outside more (my son loves to spend a lot of time inside playing with his cars) will be good for us! Thankfully, we all enjoy the outdoors and my son loves hiking!

1000 hours a year averages to about 2.74 hours a day.

You can kind of tweak this to fit your life. My husband and I both work full-time jobs during the school year while my son is in school. There aren’t enough outdoor weekday hours available to play (especially in the winter). I decided to focus on 1000 hours of being outside — whether this be through play, eating our meals outdoors, BBQs/bonfires, car shows, going to the zoo, swimming, camping, anything that happens outside. I am not counting when my child plays outside at school (I have no way to track that).

It is January 20th around noon and we have only logged 8 hours so far. Two hours were from a car show (yes — in the winter!), an hour was from hiking on a warm day, and the rest were from just playing outside in the yard at home. It’s not a lot. But it is January — a cold month when the sun sets early and all we want to do is hibernate.

By calculations based on a daily average, we should have logged 54.6 hours already. Whoops. No worries. I know we will get plenty of hours caught up once the weather warms up. Or if we ever get enough snow to actually play in!

We have a tracker on the fridge where I color in how many hours we have done so far. And yes, even if it’s a half hour, I just color in a half a circle and fill the other half with the next half hour. You can print your own tracker from here. I plan on color coding mine for each month to see how many hours we get each month. January is a light blue.

I also plan to track my son’s screen time (starting today — it’s an idea that just popped in my head) to compare to his outdoor time.

I’m excited to intentionally spend a lot of time outside this year!

Can you spend nearly three hours a day outside?

It’s not too late to try this challenge! 🤗

january freeze.

I thought I would take the time to post a mini-update at the end of the month to share things I have been up to, thinking about, etc. My intention is to do this at the end of every month this year, but we know things don’t always go according to plan.

  • I finally finished my classes back in December!! Because of this, I feel like I have more time on my hands. I’m also getting the paperwork done to officially earn my certificates in this state and get my Rank I! Woo-hoo!
  • I have been going to the gym regularly, aside from a few missed day due to weather. It feels so good to be back into that routine. (And no, this wasn’t a ‘new year’s thing — we have been going since November.)
  • Jigsaw puzzles are my addiction. I think this happens every winter season but I’ve been especially addicted lately. I’ve already re-done all the ones I have (about five) and bought a few more.
  • The child is at an age now where he wants to do things independently, and can do it. This adds to that ‘feeling’ of having more time on my hands. Although I’m still running after him all day long, he is able to take care of some things for himself (cleaning up, throwing things in the garbage, etc.) and that helps so much. I’m also so proud of him for being the awesome kid he is.
  • Speaking of my kid, I am still marveling at how fast language acquisition is and how well he can string words together into multiple sentences. I love that he can answer questions, ask me for things, tell me things he sees, tell me things he hears (this helps me a lot!), etc. We still need to work on his signing, though.
  • There is a lot of sickness going around. I was planning to write that we’ve avoided it this month and are anxious for February to see if we continue to avoid it, but the little one woke up miserable with a fever today. He was tested and sure enough, has Flu A. At least he’s handling it really well!
  • Most of the area has been impacted by the crazy sub-zero temperatures this week. We’ve been keeping warm but also going out to get some ice cream from Dairy Queen!
  • Let’s talk about Sabbath. The Lord commands that we rest on the seventh day of the week. Some of us are really good at resting a lot, and some of us, not so much. This is a commandment we are breaking all the time! As much as I like to rest, I always have something that needs to be cleaned, taken care of, whatever. Lately, I’ve been more intentional about completing tasks during the week and on Saturdays, to leave Sundays open to whatever. Each Sunday this month has been a restful day with my family — playing, exploring, being together. We even found a few geocaches, which we haven’t done in awhile! These Sundays have been marvelous and precious. I pray this pattern continues. Thankful.

Things weighing on my heart:

  • Missing people. I don’t know whether it’s the age we live in with the increasing ‘connection’ in social media or what, but it appears as there are more and more people missing each day.
  • So many unkind words, locally & nationally, from all kinds of people. I am disappointed with friends, colleagues, acquaintances, society, etc. (This is also making me look at myself more critically. We must remove the log from our own eyes first.)
  • Pro-abortion laws. There is no justification for an abortion. I have prayed for the women who consider this decision. I will continue to pray for them.
  • “American Christianity.” False teachers of the Bible. These teachers and teaching are infiltrating our churches and our society more than we know. I see it in my own church too, and struggle with it constantly.

Cheers, friends.