There are several acres of wooded “preserve” land at the northeast corner of our neighborhood. The plan is for the developer to put trails through it in order for it to be enjoyed. On one of the nice days we had last week the kids and I decided to enjoy it with or without any trails! We would forge our own! The kids all had so much fun exploring. The entrance area to the woods was completely flooded, so in order to make our way in without getting totally soaked (we only had snow boots to wear, not rain boots), we trudged through the mud along the back of an empty lot. It was pretty amazing how many inches of mud can stick to the bottom of one’s feet. As we were coming out Nathan had almost made it back to the street and he took too long to step and got stuck! We heard him saying “Augh! I can’t move!!!” He forgave my laughing since I was pulling him out. It probably took 10 minutes to get most of the excess mud off the boots – and my shoes since I threw out my old snow boots as we were packing to move. As we worked our way through the woods it seemed as if there was a big wide trail through the middle – but maybe that was just naturally there? Ben found a caterpillar – the kind that I remember playing with as a child. He picked it up and held it for a while until it became comfortable and started walking around on his hand. He was taking it with him as we made our way back to where we came in. He was behind everyone else and suddenly we heard him scream! We looked back and asked what was wrong. His reply was, “It started crawling up my sleeve!” Who knows where the caterpillar ended up after Ben shook it off! The close up pictures of Jacob were when he was begging me to carry him on the way back. I finally had to consent to carry my poor baby since it was way past his nap time – much to the dismay of my back. It was a wonderful afternoon. It was one of those special times when I decided to forget about everything that needed done inside the house and went outside to have fun with my kids. I love those times. They happen much too rarely. I need to change that.