Nate Berkus And Jeremiah Brent Share Why Kids Need Outdoors Exploration - Exclusive

If anyone can make an indoor space enticing and welcoming, it's Nate Berkus and Jeremiah Brent. The married duo, each known in his own right for creating memorable interior designs, has joined the honor society of married couples with home-improvement shows. Through their shows — "The Nate & Jeremiah Home Project" on HGTV and "Nate & Jeremiah By Design" on TLC – viewers not only learned useful design tips (and perhaps a bit about their problem-solving strategies), but got a glimpse into their personal lives: Berkus and Brent are also the proud dads of two active young children, Poppy and Oskar.

Like parents everywhere, they want their kids to have the best possible childhood, filled with learning and happy memories. For them, this meant shifting their focus from interiors to the outdoors, especially during the pandemic, when they faced the same challenge as families everywhere: devising safe, healthy ways to keep their kids engaged. "We realized during the pandemic that some of our very best memories and the best activities we did with our kids were outdoors," Berkus said. This led to their partnership with Claritin on the Outsideologist Project, which encourages families to spend more time together outdoors. In an exclusive interview with The List, Berkus and Brent shared why it's so important for kids to spend time outside.

They treat the outdoors as a classroom and lab for their kids

Nate Berkus and Jeremiah Brent have come to think of the outdoors as not just a place for their kids to blow off steam, but a setting for important life lessons and discoveries. "We know better than anybody that the outside is the epicenter of connection — connection to the community, connection as a family, connection with imagination" Brent said. "Lucky for us, we have New York City as our backyard, and whether it's hopscotch or a simple walk one day to take the dog for a walk or we explore different neighborhoods, we know how important it is to get outside of the four walls of your home."

Anything they do outside, Brent added, could become a teachable moment. "There's an entire world out there and an opportunity to find beauty in everyday things. And that's really what this is about." Berkus concurs. "When you're outside, you're forced to be a part of the world," he said. "You're forced to connect. You're forced to explore. You have the opportunity to see things. When I was growing up, my mother used to always say to wherever we went, 'tell me one thing that's beautiful that you found.' And it's something we do with our kids."

Spending time outdoors has taught their kids to challenge themselves

Discovering the fun of outdoors activities has been a learning experience for the whole family. "Well, Nate's finally coming outside, which is great because when I met him, he was like, 'What's the point? Nature should be viewed through glass,'" Jeremiah Brent said with a laugh. Wxploring familiar landscapes with their kids has added to the richness of the experience. "The great thing about our children and through what we've kind of experienced as parents is they crack the world open in such a different way," Brent added. "You get to experience joy in the little things like Nate was saying, collecting rocks and making up silly games. Anything and everything. Everything is an adventure if you let it be one."

Even short backyard adventures can challenge children to push past their comfort zones. "We were out in the backyard, [in the] middle of the pandemic and she [Poppy] climbed this huge hill that we have in our backyard," Nate Berkus recalled. "And she was so proud of herself when she got to the top. And then I could see the eyes kind of go like this. Because there was a moment of panic — 'wait, how do I get back down?' And so, I stood there and watched her navigate it. But I remember that, don't you remember that as a kid? That feeling of, 'wow, I just did something, oh wait. Now how do I undo it?'"

Follow Nate and Jeremiah's adventures on Instagram and the Outsideologist Project on Facebook and Instagram.