Saturday, September 11, 2010

Our First Letterboxing Adventure!

Thanks to a recent post on the Well-Trained Mind forums, I was reminded of a fun family activity that I'd heard of a few years ago, but at the time the boys were too little to participate--letterboxing.  Letterboxing is kind of like a treasure hunt: a person hides a small, weatherproof box containing a logbook and a rubber stamp in a public area (i.e., parks, near historical monuments, etc.) and then post clues on a letterboxing website so that participants who live or are traveling nearby can go find it.  Finders bring along their own logbook, rubber stamp, and an ink pad.  When you find the letterbox, you use your stamp to "sign" the box's logbook and then use the box's stamp in your own logbook and date both books.  Fun, simple, inexpensive, and a way to spend time together as a family outdoors.  If you're interested in more info about letterboxing, and are great places to start.

We went on our first letterboxing adventure today!  The boys were still to young to really be able to follow the clues to the one we found (that was my job), but they had fun.  They really enjoyed the treasure hunting feel of it!  Most of the clues to boxes that I've read about have a theme--often some sort of historical or local interest information.  The one we found today was about a turn-of-the-century Texas governor, and as we followed the clues, Connor was more interested in the background info than I had expected.  He even remembered the governor's name when we were talking about it at dinner!

Finding the box

Checking out previous stamps

Brennan stamping our book.  Serious letterboxers (the ones who create and hide the boxes) often create handmade rubber stamps to use in the boxes, and this was one of those.  It was very well done!

Connor stamping our horse stamp (which they chose last week) in the box's logbook

Putting everything back together to hide for the next finder

We had a great time, and we're looking forward to our next letterbox hunt!

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