Today is the last day of my month of reflections on play; although I am sure that it will be not the last time that I write about play here. Looking back over the month, I am amazed at how much I’ve learned from actually stopping and reflecting on our days. So often we just get busy with the craziness and are ready to collapse at day’s end. I have an amazing family and I am so blessed to have them as a priority. I can’t help but feel that all the time spent playing now will equate to stronger relationships and more openness during their teen years. While I know there will be rocky times, somehow the time spent now will be a contributing factor in how we handle the difficult times then.
My other observation is that I didn’t run out of new stuff to share. Going into April I wasn’t sure if I would be able to write thirty consecutive posts without a lot of repetition. Some of my posts were more exciting to write than others. Some posts were deeply personal…others not so much. I think this is representative of the fact that each day is a new day. Today’s experiences build on yesterday’s and as we grow as a family there are new discoveries/thoughts each day. To grow together there is sometimes vulnerability, but when everyone’s goal is to honor each other we hold each other carefully. Play includes a need for risk, but when this risk is surrounded by the support of a loving family and friends we can go so much further than we could on our own. I think this is true of many areas of our lives including love and faith.
Now to take a quick peek into today’s play. Water is such a source of play for Nate and Elli, as it is for most kids. They gravitate towards it. Today we went down to our future garden spot and immediately the kids were in the stream, shoes off. I was delighted. This is what I pictured when I chose this particular spot. While gardening is fun at times, I remember how tedious it can be if there are not diversions. The stream is a good source of water for the garden, but also of play for the kids.
I sometimes forget how innocent kids are. At one point I heard Nate talking about getting a drink. I called over that they could help themselves to the water bottle in the backpack. The next moment I notice that they’re both bending over in the stream licking the water! Fortunately I caught them on their first sip, but I’m praying that they didn’t pick up anything from water. Someday I may look back on this as humorous, but today it’s a bit scary.
As adults we sometimes forget what it was like to be a four or five year old. We wouldn’t dream, in most cases, of bending over to drink water from a stream. We’ve been taught that you don’t do that. It could make us really sick. We are the gatekeepers of our kids’ safety and while we can’t and shouldn’t protect them from every bump or bruise we do have to be vigilant. As parents we do our best to make things as safe as we can, but there comes a point when we just have to trust God to keep them safe and get us through any difficulties.
Also water related Nate discovered during his bath time that he can capture air and that air is lighter than water. How fun!
|Nate borrowed my camera today - I love the detail of the larger leaves sheltering the smaller.|