So much of what we give and get are temporal items that have little, lasting meaning to the recipient. What if you could give something that would inspire someone and have a lasting impact on their lives? Inspiring a love of nature and learning to live in balance with nature are probably the greatest gifts you can give. Just think about how many of us find solace and inspiration by taking a walk in the woods. Many younger people have not yet received that gift.
I have heard friends describe an event in their lives that inspired them. They now look back on that event as being pivotal and one that had lasting meaning to them. Here is a list of some of those meaningful gifts.
Books – There are so many books that have kindled a love of nature that it is hard to know where to start. My favorite books are listed in an earlier blog post that you can check on here: https://savingtheplaces.com/2015/06/12/great-summer-reads-on-nature-environment-and-keys-to-creating-a-more-sustainable-future/.
Courses – There are a wide range of course one can take online, at local colleges, or through local groups such as the Master Naturalist and Master Gardener programs offered across the country. Agree to pay the tuition for a friend.
Outdoor Adventure Courses – Some of the most inspiring experiences available are the weekend or multiple week courses offered by groups such as Nols or Outward Bound. These programs are based all across the country.
Summer Vacation – We are lucky in this country to have hundreds of national parks and many more state parks. Take the whole family out and go visit them. They offer a wide range of experiences.
Canoe, kayak, backpack, and boots – Sometimes it takes no more than having the right equipment. Most equipment you can borrow or rent, but if you own it you may actually fine more times to use it. If you own it then all you have to do is to create the time and opportunity to use it.
Time – Probably the most important gift you can give is your time and your enthusiasm. Give an IOU Gift Card for a weekend, or even an hour away, pursuing something that you love. Sharing what is important to you in nature may be infectious to others.
Take-a-way: Think of all the ways you might inspire members of your family and your friends to get outside and enjoy the nature. They will appreciate your efforts for the rest of their lives.