Day 2 of the 10 Day Family Re-Charge: Get Outdoors
When Pepper was a baby, I read a baby book from the 1950s. It had, obviously, what we would call an "old fashioned" approach to child rearing but there was some sage advice in that tome. The author said that no matter the weather, every baby needed a daily "airing" of one hour. In truth, this was likely due to the fact that homes were heated with coal and that fresh air every day was crucial.
Nonetheless, it seemed like good advice to me. So all my children get outside every day regardless of the weather. Since we live in Texas, that means the winters aren't too bad, but the summer is brutal. We often get our "outside time" at the local pool in summer.
Now for the confession. When the Bigs were Littles, I was usually outside with them -- pulling weeds, playing, reading a book, just soaking up the sun. I am not so good about that now; it's so easy to justify putting the Littles in the back yard where I can still see them and using that time to catch up on housework. It wasn't that way when they first came; but has slowly evolved over the last year or so. It's a combination of weariness and a false belief that the house really "should" be cleaner.
Yesterday for the Family Re-charge, we were to go outside. Really the idea was for the whole family but due to a lot of "big girl" obligations with church, it wasn't going to work. So while the rest of the family was away in the morning, I bundled the Littles and our foster child up and we went for a walk in the cold, cold rain.
I love the rainy day walks, usually more so in the summer, but the cold felt so cleansing after a week of everyone being sick. The kids had fun playing with the raindrops on the plants and picking up this and that along the way. They discovered some earth worms and wondered where the tree frogs -- so prevalent in summer -- were hiding. This precipitated an interesting conversation about the difference between winter and summer creatures. We saw a fountain in someone's yard and learned the difference between waterfalls and fountains. They picked up a ton of acorns which I let them throw in the street. It is so fun to throw things!
The four of them looked so adorable toddling around in their winter coats and little hats. [Well one of them wore shorts against my advice but when we got home I noticed he found his pants pretty fast!] We had the wide, wet, wonderful world to ourselves, too, as everyone else had taken cover on this blustery day.
We tend to vacation and spend our weekends out of doors, we just need to let a bit more of the outdoors into our weeks. Having now recalled the healing power of being outdoors together, I am going to reintegrate it into our days, and we will include the Bigs. A walk to the park or the mailbox; a stroller walk with the three oldest on bikes, a walk with Dear Hubby and all on the weekends, it fits nicely into the rythym of our life.
I felt rejuvenated all day. And once again, I am grateful. Ahhhh.