Notes from The Outpost: Spring Has Sprung
It feels like Spring is finally here. The weather finally isn’t frigid, and although there’s been a lot of rain recently, at least it’s not snow! Up at Camp Chi, deer have been spotted roaming the grounds, and many geese have set up nest around Blass Lake, and the ground is almost fully thawed. The foundation for The Outpost Village is being laid, which feels fitting as Spring is the time of new beginnings.
After a long Winter, it may be hard to remember all that the outdoors have to offer, so we’ve compiled a list of great Springtime Outdoor Activities for this edition of The Notes from The Outpost!
Simply Be Outside:
The first activity is both the easiest and the hardest: just go outside. It’s tempting to stay put on that super comfortable couch watching that one show or movie, but the couch will still be there tomorrow, whereas Spring only lasts a short while. It might be hard getting outside but being outside is easy!
All you have to do is go for a walk or take your bike or scooter around the block. Explore your neighborhood, head to the local park, or check out the a nearby forest preserve. You’ll be amazed how good you’ll feel after being outdoors in nice weather again. And the couch will still be there when you get back.
If you want a bit more to do, take a notebook and some writing utensils with you and journal about the experience. Pay attention to what you see. Maybe flower buds are appearing in a neighbor’s garden, or a tree in the forest is sprouting leaves. You can draw a picture, write a story, or make a song about everything around you. You won’t believe everything you’ll come up with when surrounded by nature.
Start Something New:
As we said, Springtime is the time of new beginnings, so it’s the perfect time to pick up a new hobby! You can start with something small and noncommittal such as starting a rock or pinecone collection- which you can find a ton of if you pay attention on your walks.
Spring can also be a fantastic time to start a garden! Lots of flowers, herbs, and vegetables, can be planted in the spring. Whether a full bed or a small windowsill, Spring is a great chance to show your green thumb, even if you have never had one in the past.
Maybe your spring cleaning has turned up some old trinkets that you don’t know what to do with. Don’t throw them in the trash! You can reuse old items for fun projects, such as making windchimes. Old items such as silverware, shells, and small lids can be reused in fun art projects.
If you’re looking for a big new change, consider starting a composting bin. Composting is a great way to help reduce food waste, and can be used to help your other hobbies, such as fertilizer for that new garden you’re planting.
Get a Little Dirty:
Sorry parents, but it’s true: getting a little dirty is fun. It’s why so many campers love the ever-popular Messy EPs at camp. Using your sense of touch is a wonderful way to get in touch with the natural world. It might be hard to hear, but mud is one of the most versatile toys the outdoors has to offer. Mud can be used to make sculptures and other toys, it can be carved with sticks to make elaborate designs, it can be used as paint, it can hold a fort together. The list goes on and on. Playing with mud engages the other senses too, and your creativity grows as you play. Just make sure you wash up before going back inside.
Playing in the rain is also a great way to get a little dirty, and have fun outdoors. If it’s a light rain (no heavy rain, and definitely no thunderstorms), going outside is a magical experience. Feeling the raindrops on your skin, hearing the pitter-patter on different surfaces, seeing shimmering rainbows; rain is a perfect way to get in touch with all your senses.
Mud and rain a little too dirty? That’s okay! A not-so-dirty way to get a little dirty is to simply walk barefoot outside. Feeling grass in between your toes and the cool soil underneath is a wonderful way to still feel the outdoors without getting too much of it on you!
We hope many of you will take the time to get outdoors this Spring. Before we know it, Summer will be here, Camp will be in full-swing, and The Outpost Village will be bustling with its first group of pioneers. See you all soon!