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Annika Mang on How to ‘Be Born to Be Adventurous’

Annika Mang Family on Ski Hill
Annika Mang Family on Ski Hill

To Annika Mang, adventures don’t stop when you have children. Instead, she firmly believes that it’s the beginning of greater adventures. Her blog, Born to be Adventurous, was created to share her stories and encourage families with kids to get outdoors and moving.

What inspired you to begin sharing your story online?

After we had our first daughter in 2013, we knew that we would not let this end our adventuring. We took her hiking for the first time when she was four weeks old, and camping when she was six weeks old. When she was seven months old, we went to live in Copenhagen for three months for my husband’s education and ended up backpacking across Europe. Occasionally, I would write on my blog for family and friends, as initially they were the only people asking us for advice on adventuring with kids. Eventually, people we didn’t know started to reach out. 

I continued blogging like this on and off until we had our second daughter. This is when I realized that there was a need to share our experiences and use my Physical Education degree to help educate families and encourage them to get outside. This kickstarted the long journey to write Hikes for Families: A Guide to the Canadian Rockies and sharing my story through the BorntobeAdventurous blog and Instagram account. I wanted families to be able to easily find hiking trails, and provide advice on adventuring with kids from a real family.

The platform grew organically and eventually Facebook groups were created to support moms and help them connect with the outdoors. There are now five Borntobe Adventurous Mamas groups across Western Canada, alongside a general discussion group.

As a family that loves the outdoors, what’s your favourite escape this time of year?

Getting outside together whether it is snowboarding, cross-country skiing, or pulling the kids in a sled. 

How has the pandemic changed your family life?

It has been very hard, and I want any parent that is struggling out there right now to know that YOU are not alone. We have been prioritizing mental health over school, work, and any other obligations. We are together more and are trying our best to make those moments count. Getting outside is a must for us but sometimes the best moments have been enjoying a family movie night together and snuggling. 

What’s your advice for parents looking to get their kids outside and moving this winter?

Go outside with them. Getting outside is not just good for you kids but also good for you. Try to do an activity that keeps you moving like sledding, fort building, shoveling, hiking, cross-country skiing, or snowboarding. Be prepared by wearing layers, wool socks, and don’t forget to bring hot chocolate.

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