This Monday we decided to go on a hike. We made our way to Greenway Farms, loaded Wesley in the stroller, and began our muddy trek back into the woods, towards the quarry.
But this was no aimless mission. We carried with us a jar; a jar of secrets. And when the moment was right, the spot was chosen, and we crawled even deeper into the woods. I unsheathed my camping shovel, and Sawyer began to dig at the base of a pronounced tree we found. The ground was still soft from the snow and rain.
We each wrote down some things to put in the jar; secrets only the five of us will ever know about. Before closing the lid we each added a small object to our glass jar of secrets.
JulieAnna counted out the steps from the main path to the burial spot, and Patience put a reminder on her phone for March 2nd 2016. One year from today we will return to dig up the jar, read the notes we left for ourselves, and hopefully add new ones for the following year to come. It's our own Family Secret Jar!
We had a stern talk with Wesley and he promised to never tell the secret location. You can tell by the photo below, he is taking this very seriously.
It never ceases to amaze me how such simply ideas can end up being so fun and memorable. This took minimal prep time; we basically grabbed a jar, shovel, paper, and markers. But the magic happened on the trail, as we laughed our way through the mud, and I made a big deal out of some silly jar. We talked. We told stories. We debated the color of that stupid dress on Facebook. As we squished down the soggy path, I was glad we didn't decide to sit this Monday out.
At the end of the trip, we stopped to watch the sun set over the quarry. There was this beautiful moment as JulieAnna held Wesley up on the wooden fence. Sawyer swung a stick he had found on the path, as Patience leaned on the stroller. I inhaled deeply the cool evening air, as the setting sun reflected in eyes of my children. I soaked up the moment. The jar was fun, but, honestly, anything would have been fun, because we were together.
Next time you're walking around Greenway Farms just know that somewhere out there is a jar full of buried Harris family secrets. Not the bad kind of family secrets though; the fun kind.