Since our children are getting a bit older we have been leaving them alone at the house for short periods of time (only if we have to run an errand in town). There is no way we would leave them if we went out of town and the other day R.J. showed us why; he had managed to get himself trapped underneath a mattress (it was in the upstairs hall waiting to be removed from the house) and Shannon needed to come home and rescue him, but that is a story for another time.
They know our phone numbers and the only reason we have a landline is so that the kids can call us (or 911 if one of us is dying) if something is wrong, and we reassured them that we would be home in less than twenty minutes. They were both headed down the trail into the woods as we pulled out of the driveway, R.J. with his BB gun and Lily with a five gallon bucket (to collect any of R.J.'s kills...so far all of the animals are safe) following a few steps behind.
We pulled into the driveway and after I opened the gate Shannon pulled the truck into the back so that we could unload. Shannon and I got out and after a few minutes the kids wandered back up the trail, R.J., "We were starving out there!" Shannon, "Well, did you go inside and get a snack?" R.J., "No. We found some walnuts and ate them." Lil, "They were not good. They did not taste good at all." Shannon, "You do realize that you could have walked up to the house and gotten a snack from the kitchen..." Crickets.
I am still not sure why the kids chose to eat old walnuts that they found in the woods, but I love that they are out there 'exploring' with each other, enjoying our woods, and in the process making some amazing memories (and giving me some good stories to tell).