I know it might sound oxymoronic–or in other words impossibly contradictory–but the simple act of disconnecting in order to connect is a powerful practice. Case in point: the overwhelming prevalence of technology free summer camps. My 14-year-old daughter just returned from two weeks of horseback riding in Connecticut, and her iphone sat on top of the microwave in my kitchen the whole time. Occasionally it would ring, or emit some other jarring alert, while she was blissfully engaged elsewhere. She learned how to canter a figure eight, she scaled a mountain at sunrise, she cooked over an open fire, she slept under the stars, and she cooled off in the waters of Triangle Lake. She also spent hours each day interacting with her friends and talking–you know, the original “face time.” You might be thinking, How is it possible for a working adult to successfully disconnect from technology? which might be followed by, What’s all the hype about connecting with nature? I’ve gathered a few suggestions as to how you might intermittently disconnect from technology–and subsequently connect with the natural world–without having to take two weeks off the proverbial grid. Your landscape is an extension of your home, so make time to unwind by creating a destination in your own backyard!
CONNECT WITH YOUR FOOD SOURCE: Simple raised beds are a delightful and easy addition to any backyard landscape–and it’s not too late to get started this season! Raised beds–or raised garden boxes–are easier to plant, weed, water and harvest than traditional in-ground beds. Raised beds also produce bigger and better yields in a smaller space than traditional garden rows. In fact, the experts at Nature Works Organic Land Care believe that everyone should enjoy the unparalleled taste, pride, and satisfaction that food grown at home can bring. For more information about joining the Yard-To-Table movement with your own organic food system is, read on about the addition of raised bed vegetable gardens, berry patches, and fruit/nut trees. Cool weather crops, that are quick to germinate, mean you could be enjoying your own arugula, beet greens, Swiss chard, bok choy, kale, lettuce, mustard greens, cilantro and spinach (just to name a few!) before the fall’s first frost.
CONNECT WITH YOUR OUTDOOR LIVING SPACE: Whether it be exploring the outer edges of your property after dinner, or simply dining al fresco, connecting with your outdoor living space will not only make your home feel bigger, but can also have far reaching effects on your overall health and well being. Whether designing formal features, casual outdoor living spaces, or natural plantings, the team at Nature Works is dedicated to designing distinctive landscapes for their clients. Whether you are interested in fine-tuning your landscape or incorporating a hardscape, Rich Lassor and his crew have the experience and expertise to help you navigate the myriad options available in order to create your optimal backyard destination.
At the end of the day, it all boils down to balance. Finding the sweet spot for you and your family, whether it be coming together around the backyard fire pit or an evenly conceived of plan for connecting with nature while disconnecting from technology, the opportunities are endless and rewarding. So the next time you are feeling overwhelmed by too much input, consider the benefits of disconnecting from technology in order to connect with the world around you; I’m guessing you won’t regret having given it a shot.