It’s easy to become angry at the apparent state of chaos around the world. Shootings, politics, weather, and daily articles in the newspaper about other people’s pain make me wonder, sometimes, what sort of legacy we’re creating for our children. What can I do? Am I making any difference at all?
In a burst of Pollyanna-esque gladness though, I turn toward the good, and the good places, usually after a hike through the woods or a late Alaska sunset bringing Denali to a cotton-candy glow of pink. Sometimes I’ll sit outside in the early morning and listen to a Swainson’s thrush singing a spiral-uppety melody that has lifted my heart for years.
Joy was there all the time, I simply needed a space to be reminded, nurtured, and yes, perhaps healed.
The summer issue of Outdoor Families Magazine reflects upon the things nature can teach us. From guiding a youngster along the narrow tread of a mountain bike trail to finding a quiet forest lake beside which to contemplate a medical decision, nature and the outdoors are valuable components of our frail human lives. This issue will introduce you to some courageous kids and adults addressing grief; we’ll look at ways to mitigate the “recess problem” in our schools; and talk with a mother and business owner who committed to traveling the United States with her toddler for the sake of outdoor families everywhere.
Outdoor Families Magazine’s editorial team will also be making its inaugural journey to the Outdoor Retailer Summer Market in Salt Lake City, Utah the first week of August. Here, we will take the retail world by storm by hosting a panel discussion that will honestly and directly approach the idea of creating products and opportunities for families of every size, type, economic demographic, or ability. The outdoors is a precious place, and no one person deserves more opportunity than another. We look forward to hearing from industry leaders. Outdoor Families Magazine takes seriously the commitment to providing a place “Where families and nature unite,” and we look forward to sharing the outcomes with you.
One has to be alone, under the sky,
Before everything falls into place and one finds
his or her own place in the midst of it all.
We have to have the humility to realize ourselves as part of nature.
Erin Kirkland is managing editor of Outdoor Families Magazine, author of Alaska On the Go: Exploring the 49th state with children, and publisher of AKontheGO.com. She lives with her family in Anchorage, Alaska.