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**Four personal life lessons from an adventure and simple hike at Glen falls

Last week we were able to go on another hike and so much more! This hike was much closer to home and not quite as long a walk as our hike at Benton Falls. After our hike, we were able to enjoy some of the greatness Chattanooga offers.

Our hike from the day, Glen Falls, is a short out and back trail located off Ochs highway on Lookout Mountain. There is a small trail head on your left (if you are coming up the mountain), but it is easy to miss so keep your eyes open. If you see Rock City you went too far!

As it is mid summer in the south, the falls were dried up when we went, but we still manged to have great adventures and keep cool wading through the water and rocks.

Wading through the rock pools!

Once you cross the old wooden bridge, then be sure to hang a right, you’ll see some stairs and then you can go into a “secret” cave to follow the creek and be able to wade through the rocks and the creek!

Make sure you have good water shoes as I made a bad choice in wearing my flip flops as opposed to my trusty Chaco’s . I did slip a little and am lucky I did not sprain my ankle.

There are a few spots with steep embankments so if you have little ones, make sure they are in arm’s length!

My daughter was a bit disappointed when she discovered she would not get to play in the falls like we did last week at Benton Falls, but we managed to divert any major drama rather quickly.

We did have a bit of drama when my daughter almost stepped on a millipede that we were calling her to come look at. I wish I had a video as it was quite humorous. Though, she being quite sensitive, did not think it was so funny.

The kids and the adults had a blast wading through the rocks which I am not honestly sure we would have been able to do quite as much had there been more waterfalls.

Choosing to see the good, even when it’s hard, will ultimately bring you to where you want to be.

Michelle Maros

It was a nice, easy stroll through the woods, for the most part, to get to the creek and waterfalls. On the way back to the trailhead it is more uphill, but not bad really. Especially when compared to some of the other trails around the area!

You see how hilly our city is from this pic!
Image by Ford Brackin from Pixabay

I also used our hike as an opportunity to complete my daughter’s school summer service project by picking up trash we saw along the trail. At my discretion, of course, as though I do not like to see any trash, I am just not going to allow my children to pick up certain things without gloves, nor do I want to! For example, and this is a little gross, but we did see a pair of old underwear and a bag of dog poop presumably. Enough said. Please be conscientious of others and the environment.

We learn lessons every day.

I am of the mindset to never stop learning. That is not to say I lecture my kids on a daily basis, but I do try to be intentional about looking for opportunities to have great conversations.

From our hike today, we took home four simple life lessons.

Lesson One: Even little things can make a difference.

We did not see too much trash to pick up. After looking at our meager bag of trash, my daughter said, “That’s not very much.” I responded, “That was one less piece of trash and even this little bit helped make the trail more beautiful for others.” It was a great opportunity to talk about respecting the Earth, and how we all need to work to keep it beautiful. Even something as mundane and simple as picking up a few pieces of trash can make a difference.

Glen Falls Trailhead. Check out our meager bag of trash! šŸ™‚

Lesson Two: You can only control how you respond.

This lesson is a constant struggle for our family and one that bears repeating daily. While my daughter was very disappointed that there were no big waterfalls, she could choose to pout and sulk, or she could choose to see what adventure lay around the corner. While I am not going to pretend that she made the immediate right choice, we were able to move past the minor setback. The thing is, the only constant in life is change, so you can sit around whining and pouting, or you can keep trekking.

Lesson Three: Beauty is everywhere. You just need to look.

Another lesson that routinely floors me is how young children are impressed by so little. It really doesn’t take much to impress them. My kids love big rocks and even small waterfalls. They love picking weeds (Ahem, I mean, wildflowers). They love looking at “ordinary” ants and squirrels.

Just an ordinary ant, though awe inspiring to children. Though truth be told, at the risk of showing my inner geek, they are pretty amazing creatures.
Image by Peggy Choucair from Pixabay

Children often see beauty in different ways than adults. They are not quite old enough to have their awe weakened or replaced with the competition of worldly objects.

Lesson Four: Be Respectful!

The last lesson may be the simplest, but I think the most overlooked. Don’t forget when you’re hiking, or anywhere really, to be kind to others, yourself, and of course, the Earth. The simple golden rule:

Do to others as you would have them do to you.

Luke 6:31

And Finally,

We ended our short hike at Glen Falls, with a promise to return when the falls may be bigger. We then headed to have a yummy treat of pizza and ice cream at Mr. T’s, at the base of Lookout Mountain. One of our favorite places! (Note, if you are a tourist, and the Mr. T parking lot is full, go down the road just a minute and turn into the Food City parking lot. Park near the back end and you’ll see a staircase leading to the restaurant.

After much needed rest time, we had Vacation Bible School (VBS) at our church. My husband and I took advantage of the free childcare to go on a small date together where we finally used a date box gift (given to us ages ago) full of fun ideas for dates. I found these other great ideas from Amazon as well! Check out my fellow blogger’s post here for some cheap date night ideas! Or check HERE for even more ideas!

My husband and I enjoyed a moment at the delicious and scrumptious Milk & Honey, and just enjoyed dreaming big together of how we want to live our life.

Some days are easier.

After a day like today, I find it easy to find joy. On action filled days like today, it is easy to have a mindset of gratitude.

We need to write down the moments so that we can remember the good things in our life. There will be a time when you cannot think of a thing to be grateful for. Looking back at the good moments reminds us that gratitude and joy is a choice.

I challenge you to create joy in your life. It does not always come naturally. Many times you have to work to be happy and joyful.

Joy does not simply happen to us. We have to choose joy and keep choosing it every day.

Henri J.M. Nouwen

How can you create a little more joy in your life? Comment below with some of your favorite ways to create joy!

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