First Hike of the Year


Last weekend, the snow melted, and we had some 50 degree days.  My son had been begging us to go outside, and to be completely honest, I needed some fresh air too.  The short, cold days of winter have made me pretty lethargic lately--some days I actually come home from work at 6 p.m. and end of falling asleep on the couch by 7!!!

We decided to walk at a nature preserve close to home called the Naugatuck State Forest.  It was one of my husband and I's favorite hiking spots when we were dating.  Since Lewie was born, we've come here a handful of times (stroller and all), but this was our first time coming without the stroller.  (We figured five year-old Lewie could now handle the shortest route in the forest that's just a little shy of two miles.)

I must say that this has been the highlight of my year so far.  The forest always has its own beauty during every season, and this mid January, the highlight was looking at the sun reflecting off of the ice from the two lakes.  Even though it was a warmer day, both lakes at the preserve were surprisingly frozen solid.  (My husband had to test this theory by grabbing the biggest boulder he could find and throwing it at the lake; this, of course, received wild laughter and applause from Little Lewie, who would have liked to do this all day.)

Being the "fun police," I had to remind both boys that Daddy has a bad back and shouldn't be lifting anything heavy.  (Yes, it's fun being named "Nagarella" and "The Fun Police" in my house just because I worry sometimes that someone might get hurt.)

After our walk, I felt this immense peace and happiness.  Sometimes we just need to be a little closer to nature to soothe the soul :)

Like father - like son.  They both had to find "walking sticks."

A picture of the first lake.  Yes, that's one of their walking sticks
in the middle of the lake.  They had to see if the lake was truly frozen.

I forget what they were up to here...

After a series of experiments, they are now satisfied that this lake is frozen.

Still a little slippery in some areas.

How can you not be happy on a day like this?

I love how you can see the reflection of the clouds on the ice.

My one picture of the day with my son.

Okay, so Little Lewie didn't quite finish the hike.  He needed a little help during the final part.


  1. Beautiful! We love hikes too. And this warm weather in January? It's amazing!!! I loved the testing of the ice on the lake. haha And that peaceful feeling? I think that comes from nature AND from spending quality time with the ones we love most.

  2. So beautiful!! So glad you guys were able to get out and enjoy some "warmer" weather!! Looks like a blast!

  3. Beautiful lake! There's nothing like getting out and enjoying nature!

  4. Hi Annette, Happy New Year! As much as I dislike the cold I have to say your hike looks spectacular! I've never visited New York but my daughter is going next week for an East Coast Field trip. They are going to NY, Boston, Pennsylvania, Virginia, the whole bit, all the historical sites and even seeing a play on Broadway.

    Yes I went back to school and just started my 2nd semester. I've always planned on going back to finish my Bachelors and with all the kids in school full time the time was perfect. I really love it, it keeps me very busy and feeling very productive. So obviously my blog has been lacking but that's okay. I do hope I can keep it up somewhat because the kids adore going back and reading past events.

    You can find me on Instagram under Marie Mitchell Wallwork. I love the ease of Instagram and how I can stay connected even with my busy life.

    Glad you are well. Take Care :)

  5. Ahhh! I am loving your new blog look. :)

  6. That looks fun. We did some hiking recently too this month.


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