Open eyes, open mind: nature journaling with kids

In today’s post, Discovery Leader Carlin Thompson from Sandbanks Provincial Park shares her top tips for nature journaling with kids.

We did it, parents! We made it through another winter.

The struggle of tackling young children into layered outerwear and the scavenger hunts for matching mittens now seem like a distant memory. What sweet relief.

But before the unbridled joy of shucking the outerwear gives way to sunscreen-application-induced carpal tunnel and the din of summer boredom, let’s capitalize on our children’s excitement to be outside.

Continue reading Open eyes, open mind: nature journaling with kids

Healthy Parks Healthy People Day 2021

Spending time in nature is good for our mind and body. We sleep better and think more clearly. Stress and anxiety slip away.

Research shows being outside can lower blood pressure, strengthen our immune system, and helps us relax. With over 330 provincial parks, there is much to do and see in Ontario Parks.

To celebrate how great nature makes us feel, we’re partnering with SAIL to offer free day-use on Friday, July 16 to celebrate Healthy Parks Healthy People Day!

Continue reading Healthy Parks Healthy People Day 2021

Health benefits of fishing

Fishing is an iconic Canadian pastime. There’s nothing like spending the day by the water with your friends and family, casting a line and enjoying the great outdoors.

But did you know you can get more than a killer catch from a day of fishing? Fishing actually has benefits for your physical and mental health.

Here are a few ways fishing can improve your overall well-being.

Continue reading Health benefits of fishing

8 ways paddling can improve your health

Just when we thought nothing could top the “good for you” news about chocolate…

…research shows that paddling is good not only for our physical health, but for our mental health as well!

Here are some of the benefits that will have you reaching for your paddle:

Continue reading 8 ways paddling can improve your health

Birding with benefits: therapeutic benefits of bird watching

Birdwatching is a time-honoured tradition that many people enjoy today, offering the opportunity to switch off from the modern world and get back to nature.

Whether you’re simply investing in a bird feeder for your backyard or going for a walk in your local park, birding is beneficial to both your mind and body.

It is renowned for being a meditative exercise where you are fully present in the moment.

Continue reading Birding with benefits: therapeutic benefits of bird watching

Experience more of nature by journaling

Today’s blog post comes from Corina Brdar. When Corina’s not working at Ontario Parks, she is actively involved in the growing nature journaling and mindfulness community.

A different way to be mindful in nature is through nature journaling. Using  writing and sketching as tools can be a calming way to look more deeply and experience nature more fully.

Like our previous mindfulness exercises, this too is a judgment-free practice.  You’re not creating a piece of art. You’re using a notebook to help you pay attention and truly observe.

Continue reading Experience more of nature by journaling

How to connect with nature in your everyday life

Many of us now live in fast-paced urban landscapes or busy suburban neighborhoods, spending most of our time in front of our computers, tvs, and phones.

While it’s easy to be disconnected from nature, studies show that staying connected to nature is critical for both our health and happiness. From fighting  depression to stress, and even fatigue, there are so many benefits to getting outside.

Remember that nature isn’t always a destination; it can also be found in your own backyard!

Continue reading How to connect with nature in your everyday life

Listen to nature: what do you hear?

Today’s blog post comes from Ecologist Corina Brdar. When Corina’s not working at Ontario Parks, she is actively involved in the growing nature journaling and mindfulness community.

Our last nature mindfulness moment led you through a simple 10-minute  exercise in paying attention by looking, listening, and feeling. This month, we invite you to dive a little deeper by listening to the sounds of spring.

You can try this basic mindfulness exercise next time you’re alone outdoors in a place where you feel comfortable.

Continue reading Listen to nature: what do you hear?

This mindfulness moment brought to you by nature….

Today’s blog post comes from Ecologist Corina Brdar. When Corina’s not working at Ontario Parks, she is actively involved in the growing nature journaling and mindfulness community.

It seems the term “mindfulness” is showing up everywhere in our lives these days. It can be a tricky concept to try out in your everyday life, though. An easy place to give it a try is in nature.

At the very least, some mindful time in nature can allow your busy brain a moment of rest and your nervous system an opportunity to hit pause. It can also bring a new richness to your outdoor experiences.

So what is mindfulness, and how do you “do” it in nature?

Continue reading This mindfulness moment brought to you by nature….