Hi Friends!! My name is Ginny from 1000 Hours Outside. I just wanted to take a quick minute of your time to introduce myself, give a little background information on the 1000 Hours Outside Challenge, and then write a quick bit about our new and exciting partnership with Nature Supply Co.
My story is a plain ole’ one :). We are a family of seven living in Michigan. I did not slide into motherhood well. I flumped in and have been floundering from day one. Some moms move through these years with such poise and grace but I have really struggled with the transition (even 11 years in). In some moments of deep despair and discouragement, I was introduced to nature immersion through a friend. She had read in the writings of Charlotte Mason that children should spend 4-6 hours outside on every tolerable day, which I thought was absurd - but I didn’t say it out loud because it’s hard enough to form friendships when you’re constantly interrupted or getting spit up on.
At this friend’s lead, we planned a four hour excursion to a local park…not even a playground! I was flummoxed over what in the world the kids would even do for four hours. We brought along picnic gear - blankets, food, and water and planned our outing from 9 am to 1 pm. We each had three kids all ages four and under and let me tell you, I will never ever forget that day. That was the day that gave me all the hope I needed that I would be able to survive these early years of childhood and actually enjoy them. For four hours, the kids just played. They ran. They chased. They jumped. They climbed. They observed. They laughed. They imagined. They ate. They tossed rocks into a creek. And I took a breath - the first long breath I had taken since becoming a mom three years prior. I enjoyed the company of a friend. I nursed my baby on the picnic blanket while experiencing the rays of sunshine on my body. And I was entirely present with my children and with myself.
From that moment on we were all hooked and made it a point to plan nature excursions several times a week. Long story short, we did this for years never running into other children. At the beginning, I had no idea there were developmental benefits at play here, yet I noticed quickly that our kids were thriving. Eventually, after reading some extremely influential books about kids in nature, I began the 1000 Hours Outside website and movement.
We were spending 1000 hours outside each year and it changed our entire lives. Interestingly, this amount of time is similar to the average amount of time kids spend on screened devices each year. If for just this one reason you should take on the 1000 Hours Outside challenge. It is unbelievably eye-opening to realize how much time we are losing to virtual life. A 22-minute television program flies by but 22 minutes outside are filled with discovery and excitement. And so, as our world becomes more tech-heavy this is a challenge that strives to bring about balance - both to childhood and adulthood. The average American kid only gets 4-7 minutes of free play outside a day and 90% of the average person’s life is spent indoors. We can change those numbers!
We are thrilled to announce that moving forward, we are partnering with Nature Supply Co to offer even better products with several other added benefits such as international shipping, increased color and size options, and an eco-friendly footprint. We have loved this store for such a long time and this is such a perfect fit for both of us! A pre-launch of their 1000 Hours Outside line will be available on January 15th so be watching for details!
We’d love to journey together with your this year into the great outdoors! To join, simple download a tracking sheet (or make your own!) There are several varieties available and they are all FREE! You can download your tracking sheet here or here. Make sure you are following along on social media as we will be running some exciting giveaways throughout the year. You can tag @shopnaturesupply and @1000hoursoutside or use #1000hoursoutside to join in on the fun!
Nine years ago we stumbled upon this beautiful way to do life and we invite you to join us!