Father-Daughter Take a Walk Together Day is celebrated every July 7th, just in time to get outside and enjoy the wonderful weather with loved ones. On this special day fathers and daughters of all ages are encouraged to spend time together enjoying their natural surroundings. And with the health benefits associated with walking, and emotional and psychological benefits of family bonding time, it’s a wonder we need a special holiday to remind us to get out there and move!
When I was growing up I got to spend a lot of time with my mom, who stayed at home while we were school-aged. My dad on the other hand worked in heavily trafficked Washington, DC. I realize now that he came home at a reasonable, if not early hour, but as a kid 5 o’clock seemed like it took forever to arrive. Once Dad came home we would eat our dinner and, if there wasn’t pressing yard work to attend to, spend some time together as a family. Sometimes nights this meant playing nickel poker hands or a board game. But on other nights, when the weather was good and time allowed, it meant a bike ride with my dad. I remember these days of my childhood fondly — beautiful, warm spring and summer evenings when I could feel the breeze in my hair (this was in the eighties, when you rarely saw a bicycle rider with a helmet!). We would ride all over the surrounding neighborhoods, scaling hills and pedaling with all our might. It’s funny, but I loved those evenings so much that, even now, I prefer riding a child-like one-speed cruiser over my grown-up road bike.
I can’t remember the last time I saw Dad on a bike, but I’ve been lucky enough to live within walking distance of my parents for the past few years, and the proximity has afforded plenty of opportunities for outside activities together. Tonight, to celebrate Father-Daughter Take a Walk Together Day I went on a short stroll with my dad. My mom and Chris came along too, and we brought all of the dogs so Chris could walk with his doggie-daughters. The night was a little muggy and we got a late start so our walk wasn’t very long, but it was pleasant nonetheless. I hadn’t realized how exhausted my body was after a hard workout until I started climbing the hill to my parents house and practically begged Sage and Iris to pull me along. But it was worth braving the heat and aching legs for our short journey together, and it feels good to know we won’t have to wait until next July 7th for another family outing.
Tomorrow we’ll be trading out outdoor time for a date with the couch — it’s Video Games Day.