Waiting to Inhale: Get Out Enjoy Nature

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For the past month it has been raining everyday where I live.  I love being outside.  Instead of enjoying the outdoors I was cooped up inside looking out the window as the rain saturated my lawn.  I along with my son missed being outside.  Not only was it raining,  there were several days of severe thunderstorms, falling trees, and even sinkholes.  I didn’t feel comfortable spending a lot of time on the road so we found ourselves closed up indoors with our noses in books.  After about three days of only running out to get necessities, we both felt awful.  We were sluggish and generally in a bad mood.

So I decided that we would at least spend a few minutes outdoors anyway.  I waited until the loud blasts of thunder and flashes of lightning stopped and we got out.  It felt great.  The light falling  of the cool water energized us.  Just being outdoors and not breathing in the same recycled air of our house made a huge difference.  The frizzy hair and damp clothes were a welcomed sacrifice to the benefit of enjoying nature.

Now that we have had a few rain-free days, I have made it a point to spend at least a few minutes outside.  I take pictures, write, or just run around and act like a kid with my son.  We have a picnic planned once the ground dries out.  What I would like to challenge all of us to do is as we get ready to do something, ask yourself it you could do the same thing outside.  Most things you do indoors can be done outdoors.  Try it at least one day a week.  Your body will thank you.

I know that there are  risks involved in not properly protecting yourself when you are spending time outdoors.  Here are some of the things I do to protect myself and my family:

  1. Keep your grass short.  I have two dogs and we live in a wooded area.  Fleas can be a problem, but they can only jump so high.  Don’t give them and other little critters a springboard.
  2. Wear light colors.  This will make it easier to spot any litter critter that wants to attach to you.  (For some reason bugs don’ t like me.  I’m not complaining, but I almost never get bitten by anything, nor am I allergic to poison oak or poison ivy.   Still a girl can’t be too careful)
  3. Cover up.  I am on the lookout for a natural sunscreen, but until then I am wearing my huge floppy hat and cotton long-sleeved T-shirts.
  4. Wear natural fabrics.  Find light colored cottons and silks that will allow your skin to breathe and keep cool on hot days and nights.
  5. Stay hydrated.  We should stay hydrated all the time, but especially when you are out in the summer enjoying yourself , working in the yard, it is easy to forget.  Trust me.  I wound up in the hospital last summer.  Keep a water bottle (BPA – free of course)  handy at all times.
  6. Know your surroundings.  Be careful of snakes and any other dangers that may be lurking around outside. Also plant some insect repelling plants.
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