June is such a special time of year, with the promise of summer but without the scorched landscape; with wild flowers in their full glory without the scratchy stubble of dried, leafless stalks. The birds are happy, the trees are magnificent, the weather is (mostly) balmy, and we can’t wait to get out there. Of course there are limitations to what you can achieve on a day by day basis, what with school, work and chores that just won’t go away for a month (oh, how I wish), but incorporating wildness into everyday activities is a reward in itself.
As a family we battle the usual monsters of screen time, apathy, homework – but with a little imagination we’re able to rise to the challenge of connecting with nature for even a few minutes each day. Eating dinner outside can count, if you take a moment to watch the ants trying to steal your jam sandwich; the walk to school can be wild, if you stop to pull the seedheads off the luxuriously soft Yorkshire Fog along the way; emptying the bins is valid at a push, if you pause to marvel at the intricacy of the spiderwebs along the fence. But the best days are the weekends, when we get to pack up a picnic, head to the woods, and revel in the wonderful playground that nature has given us. Finding wild creatures of all sizes, searching for rare flowers amongst the grasses, feeling the differences in texture between the tree barks, lying on a picnic blanket and spotting animal shapes amongst the clouds, playing pretend games from your favourite climbing tree… and in 2019, we have 5 whole weekends in June! I for one can’t wait.
And the great thing about doing 30 Days Wild with children is that we all get to feel a little childish again, even if only for a little while. “We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.”