Thanksgiving Hike

This week I joined a Stroller Hikes hike, in particular the Thanksgiving Hike at Fremont Older. At first a 1.5 hour hike seemed daunting for me, but I was soon proved wrong and rather enjoyed the experience by the end.

Perhaps it was because of the weather. The hike was mostly sunny, fairly nice for a November day, and my mood soared along with the sun. The weather also allowed the hike to attract an unusually large plethora of people, and I enjoyed observing many others passing by: bikers, joggers, and occasionally even a dog.

Maybe it was due to the view. As I observed the gorgeous landscape of buildings and nature mingled together, I felt a feeling of satisfaction and appreciation. The feeling of accomplishment from hiking up the hills added a new dimension to the view, and I looked on with a newfound light.

Perhaps it was because of the people. I15171138_1040096776113664_2657930643140357361_n enjoyed the children’s naive and carefree attitude, as they rushed down the hills or chased after a fluffy dog. With the reassurance of their parent’s protection and the naivety of their youth, they charged on straight ahead, unheeded by hills, onlookers, or a fall; in fact, the children sometimes did stumble and fall, but soon picked themselves back up and continued straight on ahead, refusing to be discouraged by such a trivial hindrance.

But although these all were vital aspects to the hike I experienced, it was mostly a fun and enjoyable hike, and I highly recommend joining one yourself!

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The Meaning of Thanksgiving

What does Thanksgiving mean to you?

Perhaps it brings fond memories, as you are once again reunited with distant family members, geographically and perhaps even emotionally.

Perhaps it brings painful memories, reminding you of your large, rambunctious family dinners, arguing with siblings and family members on politics and opinions and rekindling old rivalries.

Perhaps it brings feelings of excitement and thrill, as you watch the Thanksgiving parade floats, or feelings of anxiety, as you struggle to finish making Thanksgiving dinner and not burn the turkey.

But although it may bring feelings of laughter and joy, mingled with nervousness and disappointment, Thanksgiving is, in the end, not about impressing your guests, besting your rivals, or arguing with family and friends – it’s about being thankful and reuniting with family and friends. So this year, rather than stress or worry or argue, make an effort to live in the moment, and simply appreciate all that you have right now.

But how to start? The first step is easy: express your gratitude to family, friends, and people that have supported and influenced you, and show them how much they trully mean to you.

How? By simply saying two words – two words which we take for granted every day.

“Thank you.”

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Thanksgiving Hike

Want to experience a Stroller Hikes tradition? Then come along with Debbie, Max, and Holly for a Thanksgiving Hike at Fremont Older in Saratoga on Thursday, November 24 from 10 AM to 11:30 AM. This is a great trail for moderate hills and views. Carriers work best if little ones need to be carried (a bit steep for a stroller). Bring snacks and water. We’ll hike from the parking lot at the end of Prospect Road, up to Hunter’s Point for a snack break. For more information about the Open Space and hike, see Fremont Older’s Webpage: (http://strollerhikes.com/location/fremont-older/). Running late? Call Debbie at 650-776-1082.

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Stroller Hikes Craft Party

Come join Debbie, Max, and Holly for some craft fun this year!

Max holding home-made coffee cup cozies

These coffee cup cozies will be similar to those at the craft party.

Every year, we encourage children explore their creative side with crafts, which can also make delightful gifts for teachers, grandparents, neighbors, and friends. We’ll have all sorts of crafts for kids young and old to do, for holiday gifts or just as a break activity on the long weekend.

Some craft ideas this year are:

  • Fish bag soap
  • Bath scrubs and salts
  • Felt coffee cup cozies
  • Fleece scarves
  • Confetti votive (candle) holders

Participants can drop by any time from 11 AM to 12:30 PM at the Summit Room at Sports Basement in Sunnyvale, but come earlier for the best selection of craft options. We’ll have directions and supplies for everyone, so parents can facilitate crafting with their kids. Please don’t plan to make tons of each craft, but each child is welcome to make one of each and take the insight from the party with you, so you can repeat the crafts at home, if you really like the craft and have a long holiday gift list. Crafts will work for people of all ages and everything is free!

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Holly posing with a coffee cup cozy she made

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November

As the weather begins to change, we begin to change as well – not just the way we dress, but our habits and maybe even our mood occasionally. Rather than pull on a pair of shorts and light clothing to enjoy the sun’s rays and keep cool, we begin to bundle up, piling on jackets and warm apparel, to warm up against the ever-increasing cold. Rather than stay inside to enjoy the air conditioner and escape from the barren heat outside, we stay inside to snuggle up in a blanket and keep warm, feeling cozy rather than energetic. Gone are the days of careless walks and hikes, enjoying the warm summer air, the days of lethargy and calm, and relaxing hikes aided by the occasional summer breeze.

But fall brings its perks as well. Recently, on a small hike of my own, I was able to escape from the pressures and burdens of my current life as well. Hearing the thud of my shoes on pavement, with an occasional crunch of a leaf, accompanied by the sharp briskness of the air, I felt instantly awake and aware, able to savor the surroundings and freshen up. This hike was a major contrast from the lazy hikes during the summer, and allowed me to notice the shifting scenery and plant life, a fascinating and entertaining discovery as I hiked.

Often times in the fall and winter, we bundle up and huddle up in our homes, preferring the comfort and coziness of our houses than the frigidity of the outside. But hiking in the winter can be just as enjoyable, and will offer a new view on the scenery around you. See the leaves hanging from the trees, one breeze away from being released. Listen to the crunch of leaves on pavement, the thud of feet on ground. Smell the freshness of the air, the clean, sharp scent of autumn. Feel the chilliness, and rather than hide away from it, embrace it, and autumn altogether.

The hiking trail I used was part of the Parker Ranch Trails, which eventually leads to Fremont Older (http://strollerhikes.com/location/fremont-older/). Parker Ranch Trails starts near the corner of Beauchamps Lane and Prospect Road in Saratoga, CA.

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