At the beginning of this summer, I was really excited for this date night activity but as this pregnancy started to take more of a toll on my body, I was afraid that we weren't going to be able to complete it this year. I knew that hiking in the mountains was not going to be at all enjoyable for me, so I started researching easy, flat terrain hikes in my area. There are plenty of trails and paths to walk on, including a nature path near our home, but I was looking for something that felt like we were hiking in the mountains without being quite so strenuous on my pregnant self.
I found a few different options that I'm excited to explore in the future, but settled on one that was just a few minutes from our house and had the added bonus of a really fun playground! When we got there, the park was under construction and the majority of the grass was dead. I'm hoping that the next time we go back, it will be a little bit better. We still had fun and enjoyed our time there though!
We started out with a picnic because Bensen had just woken up from his long Sunday afternoon nap and was ready to eat. He may not have eaten a lot while we were there but Joe and I were impressed that he sat on the blanket and didn't even try to move for the 15 minutes that we were eating. Bensen really just likes to be outside and I think more picnics are in our future, no matter how messy they might be.
After we were done eating, we packed our dinner mess into the car and started searching for the trail that I'd been reading so much about. I loved this trail because it wasn't just one long expansive trail, there were a lot of different directions you could go and loops that you could take. We made our "hike" a 15 minute one, following a little loop that took us a ways down the trail and then came right back to where we had started. From the map at the beginning of the trail, it looks like there are a lot of different trails you can take, some that go up in to the mountain and others that stay close by. We'll have to explore it again when my activity isn't limited by painful pregnancy symptoms.
Last but not least, Bensen and I explored the tot side of the playground. I'm excited to take him on the bigger playground one day and have him appreciate it, but the toddler playground was fun too! I love having a little buddy who I can enjoy climbing, sliding and swinging with, even if I looked a little silly pregnant and trying to sneak under the toddler sized opening to take my kid down the slide. Next year, when I start my mommy/son dates with him, I think going to the playground will need to be a regular activity for us.
This date may not have been what I'd envisioned it to be when I added it to our bucket list at the beginning of the year, but we enjoyed our family time and the added excitement to our usual second Sunday routine. The weather was perfect and I was content with the location that we'd picked. However, hike and a picnic may end up back on our bucket list next year to complete just as a couple when we can go on a more intense hike without the kiddos.