My Friday 5: Snapshots of Joy


Tomorrow The Little Explorer turns 4.

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I’m not gonna lie to you. This past year has been a bit … challenging. The little guy is one of the most spirited people I know. He’s a wild child – full of boundless energy that is constantly pushing me to the edge of my comfort zone. And right on past.

Thing is, that’s where life really begins, right – at the end of your comfort zone? I think this kid has a lot to teach me.

When I was trying to figure out just how to capture this past year in pictures, I was struck by one constant: The Little Explorer is one joyful human being.

When he does something, he does it full throttle. Good or bad, he’s all in. He’s living every moment as fully as possible.

Yeah, I’m jealous, too.

In case you need a reminder of what joy – pure joy – looks like, here are a few moments from a year in the life of The Little Explorer.

1. Joy on the trail
There is rarely complaining, often running and usually a fair amount of questions when The Little Explorer is along. He knows how to keep it interesting.

2. Joy at play
All this kid needs is a cardboard box. Or a pile of dirt. He finds wonder and fun in just about anything. What’s wrong with the rest of us?

3. Joy in all kinds of weather
When it rains, The Little Explorer begs to head outside. When the sun goes down, he wants out (“I can use my flashlight, mommy”). It’s hard to argue with that attitude.

4. Joy in life’s simple pleasures
Like blowing bubbles, searching for the “perfect stick” or burying and discovering treasures in the dirt. Can I bottle that passion?

5. Joy in new adventures
Going snow tubing? Yay! Gonna sleep outside in a tent? Cool! The Little Explorer is always up for – and excited about – trying new things. (Wish I could say the same for myself.)

Here’s wishing you much joy wherever your adventures might take you.

It's always nice to share.
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  1. says

    Oh, there&#39;s plenty of complaining – only I call it whining &amp; it drives me batty. (Luckily, there are few complaints when we&#39;re outside.) Wish we could have a playdate &amp; throw the kids out back for a while. :-)<br /><br />Believe it or not, I actually hope the little guy keeps his spirit – I&#39;m curious where it&#39;ll take him someday.

  2. says

    Spirited? Full of joy? Add a little more complaining and our littlests sound very familiar. I hope my can grow out of the &quot;spirited&quot; but keep the joy.

  3. Pediatrics Doctor says

    Your Little Explorer is so cool Debi! I love it when you&#39;ve said he knows how to keep things interesting. Outdoors are usually not that fun for most kids, but I&#39;ve noticed that you let him go all-the-way which made him accustomed to what nature has to offer. Always take care and have fun!

  4. says

    Oh my gosh, Sere, our boys sound so much alike! You&#39;re right about how they don&#39;t complain about much – at least not when we&#39;re off on our &quot;adventures.&quot; Thanks for letting me know I&#39;m not alone … that&#39;s so comforting. 🙂

  5. says

    What a beautiful and inspiring post, Debi. He is too cute! My son is also a wild child with an infectious laugh. I call him my daredevil – always up for an adventure. Like you, I wish I can have an ounce of my kids&#39; energy and enjoying life&#39;s simple pleasures everyday. Happy Birthday to Little Explorer! Have a wonderful Mother&#39;s Day weekend too.

  6. says

    What adorable pictures! Oh my goodness I too have a &quot;wild child&quot; who is all over the place. But he has such a good heart that I just have to be thankful for it. The awesome thing though is that when we &quot;go exploring&quot; as he calls it, he never complains about the hikes or the walks or anything like that. I think he will give me lots of gray hair, just because of his

  7. says

    Great post Debi. I have two wild explorers like your youngest son…I really appreciate this post for many reasons but mainly it gives me such an appreciation for them today. Their wild endless energy could power the world I think 🙂 Your perspective and enjoyment of how he lives life is beautiful.<br />Happy Mothers Day.

  8. says

    Dear Debi,<br /><br />What an inspiring post! The photos are adorable. The KEEN Recess Team is inspired by people like you who make getting outdoors a priority. On our recess page [] you can add your favorite destinations and photos to the map. Whether you&#39;re chasing waterfalls, jumping in puddles or finding the perfect hike, we&#39;d love to know. Thanks for your input