TIPS FOR GETTING YOUR FAMILY OUTSIDE THIS TIME OF YEAR
Having spent 18 months visiting all 59 U.S. national parks in a converted shuttle bus with two young kids, L.L.Bean Ambassadors David and Madison Bowman are no strangers to the challenges of making outdoor time with family. So, we asked them to share tips for getting outside during the holiday and winter seasons.
Spending time outdoors is a great way to destress, reenergize and discover joyful moments that make every day happier and healthier. So, when the holidays and wintertime come around to the Bowman house, they like to challenge themselves with special outdoor goals. This year it’s hiking 50 miles within 50 miles of their home before the year ends. These fun goals inspire them and their kids to get outside and explore new trails/environments close to home.
For the Bowmans, the key to staying warm during the winter/holiday season is pretty simple – layers. Not only is this a good way to ensure optimal coziness in any situation, but when you’re working up a sweat doing something active, being able to shed and add layers as you go is essential to all-day comfort. Plus, giving their kids proper layers is an easy way to keep them happy outside for longer.
Warm sugar cookies, chilled mugs of eggnog and crackling fires are definitely an important part of the holidays, but there is so much more to discover outside your front door. Whether it’s building snowmen, snowshoeing or creating winter games in the backyard, the Bowman family likes to spend their holidays having fun quality time together outside. Plus, the magical colors and beautiful lighting winter brings can always be enjoyed from the toasty comfort and convenience of a fire pit.
Every season, the Bowmans create a poster to capture all the significant events of the previous year with a family photo included. It’s a fun tradition that commemorates their year together while also creating a collection of cherished mementos. They also may or may not listen to a particular album by a popular Swedish supergroup each year, but no one really seems to know when that started. Whatever your own traditions may be, or whatever you want them to be, making them a part of your holidays brings you closer together as a family and can be a whole lot of fun too.
After years of spending time outside during the holidays and colder seasons, the Bowmans know from experience that having the right mindset about winter can be the difference between having an epic season of fun or watching it gloomily pass you by from your window. When you can learn to appreciate the little things that make winter so special, you’ll start to find new and bigger things to love about it. All you need is an open mind and some comfortable layers.