Meet Candace Lostroh:
I’m a Colorado born and raised adventure lover that has built her life around what I value most in life: my faith, my family, and my love for God’s creation in nature. I grew up next to a State Park that offered endless time with my animals and wildlife, and I really didn’t realize how blessed this kind of life was until I was much older. Not many kids get to grow up riding horses for hours on end during the summer, swimming in canals back behind their house, and napping beneath the shade of cottonwoods along the creek, but I was and I hate to say it’s something I probably took for granted.
I truly believe that life begins at the edge of your comfort zone and for a kid who grew up riding her horse as fast as she would carry her through wide open pastures, you would think that my comfort zones would be expansive, but things changed after having kids. I believe that our fear-driven society wants parents to think that there is evil lurking around every corner and catastrophe waiting to happen in every situation. I completely agree that as a parent we need to be guardians of our kids, but when did it become safer to plop them down with a computer device that deadens their senses and reality of life instead of taking them out into the wildness of nature with no agenda but to explore and learn?
With my young daughters I vow to not constrain them from experiencing this world at a lesser scope than what I was offered in my childhood—I want them to experience it even more. My husband and I are intentionally raising our girls this way outside of the chain-link fence, so to speak, and unplugged from technology as much as our days can afford. We want our girls to learn to value people and the world we live in more than material things.
Lauren and I bonded over our love for the outdoors and our passion for overcoming the challenges of raising our kids in a society that favors our children learning on an Ipad over getting outside and getting dirty. Yes, taking kids on adventures can be tough. There will be tears, tantrums and scuffed knees. It won’t look like that picture-perfect parenthood that’s portrayed on social media, because anything worth doing will have setbacks…but do it anyway! Pack your band-aids, a hundred different snacks and don’t be afraid to change your plans along the trail if need be. Our best advice is just to learn to laugh at the hard situations and praise your kids and pat yourself on the back for learning to be brave and facing tough things head on. There’s no better feeling than summiting that mountaintop not because you’re finally at the top, but because of all that you overcame to get there! So welcome to Raise Them Wild Company, you’re a rare breed if you’re ready to break the chains of a “safe” childhood and we’re so happy to have you on this journey with us.
Meet Lauren Farrell:
Hey there! My name is Lauren and I’m a California heart turned Coloradan (don’t tell anyone though, because Colorado natives have a little thing about that). Grad School brought me to Colorado, but the Rocky Mountains convinced me to take root here. I grew up loving nature, and I had the privilege of trying about every outdoor sport under the sun, but honestly, as soon as I welcomed my baby girl, Canaan, into this world, life changed pretty significantly, as did my hobbies. Beautifully, but significantly.
Within the first few months of my daughter’s life, my husband and I made some pretty big choices. My husband left his job in law enforcement to pursue small business opportunities. We sold the house we brought our daughter home to, and moved closer to family. I left a respectable career with a stable salary in order to chase the things that mattered most. With all of these changes, navigating being a new mama kicked my butt, and the first couple months were pretty tough. Ehh, I should specify. All of the parenting months are tough to me in some way, shape, or form, but those first couple months were like a boot camp at a gym where they won’t let me cancel my membership. A few months into the parenting gig, I felt pretty trapped by those words that well-meaning moms inadvertently spoke over me while I was pregnant. You know those things because I’m sure you’ve heard them too—the, “well, enjoy it now, because once baby comes, you won’t be able to ____ anymore.” In my sleep-exhausted world it honestly felt pretty true. I couldn’t so much as go to the grocery store without feeling a little anxious worrying about feeding schedules and whether the bathrooms would have changing tables…the list goes on.
I became pretty convicted that I was buying into the lies that exist only to make us mamas–brilliant, strong, beautiful, powerful, resilient, mamas–feel trapped by the new responsibilities of parenthood. Calling out those lies did wonders to help me embrace a wonderfully made identity, as did returning to the hobbies that I love most like hiking and traveling. There was really just no reason why I couldn’t continue doing the things I love, with child, I just had to learn how. Strapping my babe into her hiking backpack and climbing to the top of a mountain instantly made me feel like a not-so-stay-at-home-mom. When the troughs of parenting make me question if I’m failing at this raising babies thing, nature allows me the space to reconnect with my faith, fellowship with members of my tribe, care for my soul, and teach my baby girl about the beauty of creation. I may not master nap schedules or dress my baby like a Gap model (for real, she’s in pajamas probably 50% of the time), but through our adventures together, I feel like I’m succeeding at sowing seeds of wonder. I’m giving her something far richer than money could ever buy, and that’s pretty darn priceless.