A note from Maman on the Trail:
Meet Rachel, a human of the outdoors. Rachel lives in Salt Lake City, Utah and get outdoors with her husband, Aaron, and their 14-month old son. Here is her story…
On her time outdoors…
I hike at least once a week. The outdoors has completely changed my life. I am always with my baby and we hike or ski as a family every Saturday. My husband grew up outside and taught me everything I know. He taught me how to ski, and was patient with me in learning. I never knew how great the outdoors is until I got married. My mom hated that stuff so we never got to do it even though I grew up in Utah. I am a convert to the outdoor lifestyle and am completely in love with it. Now I want my son to experience being outside in a way that I never did. It has changed my whole life. My husband even has gotten me to do scary things that I would’ve never done without him. We moved to Cozumel Mexico for one year and had our baby there.
Two months ago I decided to start a blog about our adventures. I have found that it is something I’m very passionate about and am in it for long haul! Through my blog I am hoping that I can inspire people to get outside regardless of the climate they live in. I have lived in two opposite climates and have had to learn how to enjoy going outside in both. I wrote a blog post to help others find inspiration to go outside regardless of where they live, and you can read that here.
On her year in Mexico…
We decided to move to Mexico after Aaron made a contact through someone his parents knew. This man worked at a company named Los Cinco Soles and is originally from Utah. They needed a marketer to work with cruise ships who could speak Spanish and English. Aaron applied and ended up getting the job right after he graduated college. In the interview they told him it would be a testing year, or basically an internship. We knew it might only be a year and that was the beauty of it, because if we hated it we had a way out. We decided to give it a try, to gain experience in life, and to gain experience in Aaron’s career.
We had a great time and one day we hope to move back, which is interesting to me though because I did not enjoy it all of the time. I was pregnant and/or had a newborn the entire year we were there, and the heat and humidity were my biggest trials. I wish I knew then what I know now. I got outside a lot while I was there, but I think I could learn to enjoy it more now. Mexico gave us a lot of perspective about the blessings we enjoy, and what it is like to be the minority. We will reflect back on that experience often throughout our lives.
We moved back to Utah after the year was up because Aaron’s contract was finished. I was also happy to get back to my family because I had my parent’s first grandchild in another country and they were very sad about that. They came to visit for a month, but it was very sad and hard on me when they left.
On starting an outdoor family blog…
There are a couple of reasons why I started my blog. One was having a baby in Mexico. I couldn’t find any blogs or helpful things online about that topic. I was scared and didn’t know what to expect so I figured I could help someone out if they ever had to do the same thing. Another is my husband’s job. He works with bloggers a lot, and I saw your blog (Maman on the Trail) and thought, “Huh…I want to do something like this.” I love doing it because it forces me to get out and experience things so I will know what to write about. I think it is really opening us up for a great life outside with our kids which is completely different from my childhood.
On First Aid in the outdoors…
It was my first time backpacking on a 12 mile trail. We were eating lunch and I decided to carve my name into a stick. I mean why not? My husband started trying to teach me about ‘blood circles’ or some Boy Scout term that is supposed to teach knife safety. In the middle of his little lecture I sliced my leg open! I shouted, “Crap NOOO!” There was no way to get to a hospital quick. In our First Aid kit there was a stapler used for medical purposes. So I got stapled up right there on the trail. It was awesome!
I currently use a homemade First Aid kit. We have access to a lot of knifes, outdoor survival gear, and things like that so we create our own. I am actually doing some giveaways on my blog for my homemade survival kits and First Aid kits. If you subscribe to my newsletter you’ll be entered into the giveaway.
Don’t feel like you have to be an expert in First Aid to go outside. The most helpful skills I would think to know about how to recognize hypothermia and dehydration.
On her husband’s work with HydroBlu…
My husband grew up in the scouting world and has been outside in the Grand Tetons for what could add up to be years of his life. He loves anything outdoorsy, especially survival gear. He is always preparing 72-hour kits, or collecting things we can use while camping. He was interested in HydroBlu because those water filters were something that we didn’t already have, and could be extremely useful to us in our hobbies. Aaron is now a marketing manager for HydroBlu.
HydroBlu has many water filters including straws, water bottles, water jugs that pump water, and hydration packs for a backpack. I love the idea because whenever we are camping or hiking we have an endless supply of water in the river. The filters are so heavy duty that they filter out any bacteria. It has been great for packing light on trips and could potentially be extremely helpful if we ever needed to use our 72-hour kits.
A little Q & A…
Q: What is your go-to adventure snack?
A: Nature Valley Sweet & Salty granola bars and Ritz crackers.
Q: What piece of gear do you never leave the house without?
Q: What is your favourite nature quote, and who said it first?
A: “It isn’t the mountain ahead that wears you out it; it’s the grain of sand in your shoe.” ~ Robert W. Service
Q: What one piece of advice would you share with someone who is wary of or new to the outdoors?
A: I was wary of the outdoors once. It prevented me from enjoying and living my life. I would say to just start slowly and see if it is something you enjoy. Build up to the bigger adventures outside, but just try the small stuff first.
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