TGSG Note: There is nothing I like more when readers become part of the family, and that’s just what reader, blogger and great mom Stacy has become. I know you will be as delighted and inspired by her story as I was. Make sure to follow her on Twitter @STeet and check out her bio below.
Thanks for sharing, Stacy! See ya outside! ~ The Grass Stain Guru
When I heard Bethe had an opening for a guest post, I literally *jumped* at the chance. I first stumbled on to the #playoutdoors twitter stream sometime in 2009, and I have been hooked on her and everything she stands for ever since. As a mother of three, an Environmental Science major and a homeschooling mom I fully embrace any effort to connect a child with nature.
I planned to tell you all about the Park a Day challenge my kids and I are doing this summer with KaBoom, but when I saw Bethe’s post on International Mud Day last week it brought back a flood of memories so strong in my mind there was no way they could go unspoken.
The story begins in a crowded mini van on a hot summer day in Central Texas. My husband is away on business, again. Errands are done, kids are cranky and mommy could use a little break. We’re about 35 minutes from home, but there’s a favorite park of ours just minutes away … I turn the car around. I’m relishing the idea of getting them all outside, burning off some energy and maybe even relieving a bit of stress myself.
We were about 500 yards away when the heavens opened up and the sky fell down on top of us.
A torrential down pour, I cruised passed the kiddie park, still coming down in sheets. I slowed a bit near the slides, the rain was only getting harder. But, it was now or never I had to do something. I made my choice and pulled in to the playground parking lot.
Families were still scouraging to get their belongings and children in to the dry abyss that was their cars and looked at me more than a little strangely as I put the van in park. I looked back at the kiddos, their eyes wide wondering what was going on. I asked if they still wanted to play at the park and so began our day outdoors.
We huddled all together and sprinted for the play structure. We were soaking wet and laughing and enjoying every second of it! Soaked already, we made a split decision to take our shoes and socks off and get really good and dirty.
At first the kids were were cautious, not quite sure if they were going to get in trouble, but after a few twists of the arm from Mom -I convinced them it was all OK and we got right down to business.
It was a Texas thunderstorm, powerful but brief. It didn’t take long for the waterworks to stop and the real fun to begin.
We found a few empty containers on the grounds, relics of picnics gone by and turned the slide in to our very own mud kitchen. We were whipping out cakes and muffins with the greatest of ease.
We played for hours, till almost dark. Using all of our senses to explore the park in a whole new way and while this memory has been some time ago now, it is still every bit as vivid in my mind as it is in these photos.
Just me and my littles doing what we do best: laughing, be silly, getting dirty and playing together. Life is good. Oh Texas, how I wish it would rain! We could use another afternoon like this.
Guest Blogger Bio: Stacy is seeing the world in a whole new way – through the eyes of her children. She writes about the little things, the big things and all the “stuff” in between at Kids Stuff World.