Tuesday, April 23, 2013

101 things to do outdoors with children #28...just welcome what comes.

In case you haven't heard, we are STILL pretty much buried in snow here in Minnesota. It's been a brutal winter, with snowstorm after snowstorm pummeling us.

Ok, yes, it's pretty. But come on.

Most winters, by the end of February, many of us here in the Northland are pretty stir crazy. Of course, we do know how to have fun in the snow, what with the skiing, snowshoeing, ice fishing, snow-fort-building, winter camping, snowman making, hot chocolate drinking, ice skating, etc, etc.  But come February, we're all a little weary, tired of long undies and puffy down coats, ready for sun, ready for some evidence that spring is, in fact, coming. We've given up trying to find matching pairs of mittens and instead just throw on whatever we can find. (My own son sometimes just wears socks on his hands when we go out these days, so difficult is it to find a matching set of mittens.)

And now, here we are, with May just one week away, and yesterday we had yet another snowstorm, which dropped 3 more inches of heavy, wet snow onto us.

Most adults in these parts are so winter-fatigued we don't know whether to laugh or cry. We grin and bear it, trying to make the best of what has become a rather tired old joke. Neighbors have put up their Christmas lights again, as if to spite Mother Nature. There are snowmen dotting the city yards (albeit dirty, faceless, pathetic-looking ones.) We make half-hearted attempts at shoveling the sidewalks, creating sloppy paths just wide enough for a peg-legged pogo-stick-riding person to navigate. We're tired of this, people. Damn tired of it.

This morning, we were getting ready for the walk to L's school, while I was cursing under my breath at the snow, the kids hopped into their winter gear and dashed out to play-and play they did....all the way to school.

The moment they got out there into that white freshly fallen snow, it was all brand new to them. How refreshing! Why fight it? The snow is here, let's enjoy! They seemed to think.

My 7 year old danced and hopped all the way to school.

J tried to make a snowball that was "three blocks big" )by attempting to roll the same snowball all the way to school. (Eventually it got too heavy to move, but hey-it was fun trying!)

I know I've posted about this before. But it really does bear repeating. Our attitude matters. And just as our children's perceptions of weather and nature are influenced by what we say and how we react, so can our perceptions be shaped by our children's actions and attitudes.

As adults, we can choose to gripe and be annoyed, or we can choose to do what the children do: just approach it all with a smile and an expectation of fun. So I took a deep breath, scooped up a handful of snow, and nailed L in the back with a snowball the size of a grapefruit. We played tag and chase and fell into the snow, giggling.  How nice to just welcome what is, instead of wishing for something else.

Please take a moment to visit today's stop on the virtual book tour, Nature for Kids.   Tomorrow, the Greener Earth book will be featured at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom.

No comments:

Post a Comment