Tag Archives: walking

Cape Cod Nature Trails

2016 came and went with quite a bit of mixed emotions.  Another year older, another year of supposed wisdom. Yet, I find that with everything that happened in 2016, I still had a sense of helplessness and odd mix of anxiety about what this year held. Another year older and yet i don’t know that I have much to show for myself.  Another year of opportunity lies ahead and I plan on reaching again. If I don’t, then next year I will have even less to show for myself.

One goal for 2017 is to get out more.  Living on Cape Cod provides so many opportunities to get out into Nature. Some even believe walking in the woods is as good as getting therapy.  Everyone knows about the pristine beaches, but there are also many acres of preserved woods and trails all over Cape Cod that are free to the public.

We started the day after Christmas and have been off discovering trails we know and trails we have never even heard of.  It’s been fun exploring the beauty of the Cape in a new way. The woods have been relaxing and a personal experience, yet sharing the walks with family has been nice too because we are able to share in the beauty of the place we call home.

hiking_trail_sign_sticker

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Walking Through the Woodlands

Living on Cape Cod, we are blessed with so many preserved pieces of land. Many of them offer trails and the ability to walk through them and enjoy the quiet peace that only nature can give. It’s no wonder that Thoreau wanted to spend time here, exploring and meditating.

Yesterday, since it was gorgeous and we had no Sunday plans, I decided to take the Daughter to the Mashpee River Woodlands and explore.

Back in elementary school, the field trip to the Mashpee River Woodlands was a fun one. We learned about the brackish water that was at the end of the river and how the river flowed from Mashpee-Wakeby Lake to Popponesset Bay and the animals. I will never forget learning about Wintermint and tasting a leaf of it to discover it did taste like my favorite flavor of trident gum!

Wintermint – I don’t know if I would recommend tasting it though – might not be wise and DEFINITELY DO NOT eat the berries!

The Daughter insisted on bringing her camera when we couldn’t find her binoculars which was fine with me. I was bringing my camera, it only made sense. It was such a perfect day for a walk through the woods.

There are three parking lots and depending on how long you want your hike to be, you may choose one parking lot over the other. Also, there are places where you can put your kayak or canoe in and view the woodlands while riding the river. We did this once, back when I was in high school. We took three of our Spanish foreign exchange students who were with us for the summer and oh man…that was one crazy canoe and kayak trip. I wish I had pictures to show you of that…just thinking about it has me smiling.

At any rate, since the water is a little cold this time of year, it is a great time to hike. The fear of ticks was minimal since the weather is getting colder (though we still did tick checks afterwards) and the trees with fewer leaves let more sun in through the canopy.

The Daughter taking a snap of something cool.

You can print out your own map of the trails and then head off for your own adventure. The best of the trails, in my opinion, is the Long River Trail. We parked at the Mashpee Neck Road parking lot and took the Partridge Berry Trail (marked PB on the trail markers) down to the Long River Trail. We turned up the Chickadee Trail and then went the opposite direction down the Partridge Berry Trail to Whitcomb’s Landing.

Along the way we saw a few amazing things:

So many trees were uprooted and down, exposing amazing root structures like this one.

This was deemed the “U” tree for obvious reasons.

At the end of the Whitcomb’s Landing trail where it connected to the Long River trail, there was a bench and a gorgeous spot to just sit and take in the peace and quiet of the surroundings.

Looking down the river, away from the bay.

Where the river bends and curves are known as “meanders.”

The Daughter asked that we come back some day and have a picnic lunch. She then told me I could carry it all for her in her backpack and we would spend all day there, basically, I would be her pack mule on a grand expedition, but I’m quite ok with it . While I agreed that next summer we could do that, I began to think of the possibility of snow-shoeing through these trails if we ever get enough snow. My mother, who came with us, actually said that out loud. I guess great minds think alike.

If you are looking for a fun way to spend a morning or afternoon and it’s not too cold out (or if you don’t mind walking in the cold), take advantage of this underused natural resource. It’s beautiful and peaceful, the perfect recipe for smiles like this:

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Apple Picking and The Best Season of the Year

Fall is by far my most favorite season of the year and September is my most favorite month.  The skies seem bluer and the air is full of fantastic smells.  The cooler nights mean perfect sleeping (even if the ragweed is currently wreaking havoc on everyone’s sinuses in the family) and the early morning dew makes the air seem that much more crisp because it’s visible.  Even though technically, by the earth’s rotation, this is the last weekend of Summer, it felt like a proper Fall weekend.

It was an action packed weekend too!

The Daughter and I were very happy to go back to story hour at the Mashpee Public Library.  This is, by far, one of the best story hours I have ever been to.  The children’s librarian does an amazing job with the 3+ year olds.  Three stories, a couple of little songs and dances, all finished off with a craft. It’s a wonderful story hour.  This week, we read stories all about Bears.

This was a very cute book.

I enjoy it as a mom because it gives me a chance to kind of sit back and relax while the Daughter gets some very important kid time and reading time – it’s a win-win-win.  I worry sometimes since she is an only child that she doesn’t always get as much interaction with other kids as she should.  Yes she’s in daycare two days a week but I wonder if that’s enough sometimes.  Story hour is good because a couple of her friends from daycare go too so she gets to see them and there are other kids as well so she gets to make new friends too.
I’m so happy that she loves to read and loves the library. Reading is probably one of the most important skills in my opinion so I’m thrilled that she seems to love it and looks forward to our weekly trip to the library and our nightly bedtime story ritual.

Saturday was even more excitement for the Daughter.  We surprised her with Disney On Ice – Rockin’ Ever After at the Providence Dunkin’ Donuts Center.  I have very vague memories of my first time ever going to Disney on Ice.   I was around the same age as the Daughter and I remember Peter Pan was in the show we saw.  It was so much fun to see her face light up when Mickey and Minnie skated out on to the ice.  She almost jumped into the rafters and it was amazing!  The excitement and the joy at seeing the Mouse and his “gang” as she called them.  She was a little sad that Pluto and Daisy weren’t there but after we told her that they must be back at the Clubhouse making sure that Pete wasn’t lonely, she was ok.  Then there were the princesses.  They were supposed to be the main event, but for the Daughter, they were second fiddle to the mouse.

The Grand Finale

But the fun didn’t stop there!  Oh no!

Today, we did our annual family trip to Pippin Orchards in Cranston, RI. Every year, we usually will drive out here to go apple picking.  Today was the day because one of the Brothers was running a 5K in downtown Providence so it made sense that after we went to the race (which we didn’t exactly make), that we continue on to go apple picking.  They said that they had honey crisps ripe.  Sadly, the few trees that had the honey crisps had nothing but rotten apples on them.  That was sad.  Luckily, the Macintosh apples were ripe and ready to be picked.  Though, the ripe ones were so high up in the tree, we had to jump to reach them.

All the best apples were out of reach and they hadn’t brought out the pickers yet – said it was too early. 😦

It was the perfect day to be out and enjoying the day with the family and tasting the delicious, fresh apples.

When we got home, we pried the Husband away from football, and the three of us went for a walk down to the lake.  It was just after sunset and peaceful.  The lake was like glass and the minnows were in the shallow end grabbing their supper, making ripples every few minutes that spread slowly over the smooth surface.

The clouds reflected perfectly.

The colors of the sunset reflected on the water.

A neighbor’s sailboat on the glassy water.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The walk home was shorter than the walk there only because the Daughter was on a mission to get home for a “special treat” for eating her dinner and going for a walk.   That pretty much meant racing home the whole way shouting “I’m winning.  I’m winning.”  But she did end up making some time to hold hands with Daddy and talk about what a wonderful weekend it truly was.

Hand in hand. ♥

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Refocusing After a Not So Stellar Weigh In

Weigh in was a bust tonight.  I gained.  I knew I was going to gain. I gained 1.4 to be exact. It’s this thing I do to myself.  I come close to a milestone and I freak out.  Not like seriously freak out but it’s like something says “You’ve got a little wiggle room.”  I do not have a little wiggle room.  Tomorrow is a new day, a new WW week, a new shot at that magic number.

This coming week, I have a second post-op appointment and hopefully I’ll be able to get back swimming soon.  Yes, walking is fine but I get bored and the Daughter likes to come for walks and that makes for slow walking, even though I am secretly thrilled that she likes go for walks.  I got a ball-hopper and a case of tennis balls for my birthday so I really want to start using that now that the super humid days are over and it’s not torturous to be outside.

Cannot wait to get out and play more!

Today, I was thinking about getting back on track and what I need to do this week to do that.

1) I need to make sure I track everything.  I mean everything.  I need to write it down immediately after I eat it or before I eat it like I used to when I was doing really well.  That is one habit that really does help curb mindless eating.

2) I need to make sure that water is my main beverage of choice.  Definitely need to cut back on the calories I am drinking.  It’s silly.

3) I need to make sure that I am eating all five servings of my fruits and veggies.  No more excuses.  Just eat them.  They fill me up and prevent me from eating junk.

Nature’s Fast Food

4) Walk every day.  No more excuses for that. Even if it means pawning the Daughter off on someone.  Make time for this walk.  It’s just 30 minutes.  I can leave her with someone for 30 minutes.  I just need to do it.

They aren’t hard goals.  They are actually pretty simple goals.

Now for the rest of my week ahead, I have two more personal goals, not really weight loss related.  After all, there’s a little more to life isn’t there?

1) Write for at least 15 minutes a day.  I have been doing pretty well with my goal of every other day thanks to this blog where I spew out what’s in my head.  Now I need to get back to that story that’s collecting cobwebs.  Those characters have been resting in my brain for a while.  Time to wake them up.

Calvin may be right, but you can at least practice getting into the right mood by writing a little every day.

2) Work on the quilt project I started.  I need to dig out the sewing machine and just do it.  Practice makes perfect.  Just keep sewing until I get it right!

3) Breathe.  There’s been a lot going on lately.  I need to remember to breathe.

This week will come to an end and I am not sorry to see it go.  As Tom Petty sings, “It’s to move on/ Time to get going / What lies ahead I have no way of knowing…”  Odd – that is the second time this week I have quoted Tom Petty.  I guess I’ve been listening to him a lot this week.  Not a bad thing.  Just funny that I have used two of his songs this week.  At any rate, it is time to move on.  Time to move forward and not look back, just keep moving forward.

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