Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Oh to be a kid again!

Because I homeschool, I get to be with my kids all the time.  Literally.....all the time!  Now being with your kids all day every day could either be a good thing or a bad thing depending on your perspective.   Or, maybe it could be both at the same time!  I really enjoy getting to spend a ton of time with my kids.  But, I will be honest, a little break is good everyone once and a while.  And the old adage, "absence makes the heart grow fonder" definitely is true.   But, getting to spend so much time with my kids makes me feel a bit like a kid again.  I get to "play" what they play sometimes.  I get to watch their play and enjoy living through them a little bit.

As a kid, I loved climbing--everything.   I would scale the walls of our home.  I would use the bars atop my canopy bed as monkey bars.  Sadly, I ruined that bed climbing it all the time.  I loved climbing trees.  Hey, who am I kidding--I still love climbing!  Luke also is passionate about climbing.  I love seeing the joy that exudes from him as he climbs.    And I can most definitely relate.  Although, I have to admit that every time he decides to climb a get a bit nervous that he is going to fall.  I am sure my fear is exacerbated by him having two broken arms already in his life though.

Luke and his climbing buddy, Austin.
I also love watching Abbey pretend.  Most of her pretending involves pretend cooking.  She loves to pretend to have a cafe.  She can set up that cafe anywhere and everywhere.  She takes orders, makes a food dish out of whatever is around her, and presents it to her customers.

Abbey and one of her friends making some soup at one of our favorite parks.


One of the popular things for the kids to play at our house--especially when friends come over--is spies.  They play with the walkie talkies that Luke got for his birthday a year or two ago.  Well, all of our neighbor friends received walkie talkies as gifts for Christmas.  So, they have been having a blast playing with them all together.  Over the past few days, the kids have been "calling" each other on the walkie talkies, and then meeting up at our yard.  Yesterday, I decided to follow the kids around and join in on the fun a bit.  I used the excuse of wanting to take some pictures, but really just wanted to play alongside them.  First, the kids worked on a creation Luke had started a couple of months ago.  Luke had been gathering large stones and bringing them over to the sandbox a couple of months ago.   I wondered what he was up to.  He began building something with those rocks and a lot of sand in the sandbox.  It wasn't until yesterday though that I saw his work completed.   Friends, Benjamin and Jack, came over after talking on the walkie talkies and helped finish the project.  The goal was to create a water-tight fort---one that would not allow any water to seep into if the area was flooded.  One thing I have learned is that playing ALWAYS involves learning.  It is not just fun--although it is lots of that as well.  Play is a child's laboratory!

carefully packing the fort

making sure it is packed tightly

funny conversations along the way...

Abbey's garbage truck was acting like a concrete mixer.  She was bringing building materials to the job site.

Important discussions happened about the fortress's design.

Abbey helped with some of the design elements.  She really thought the area needed some trees.

The fortress had a series of really neat underground tunnels.  

Sifting some sandy onto the top.

Isn't their creation gorgeous?

The moment of truth:  will the fortress withstand flooding in the river between the two buildings?

It worked!  Awesome work kids!

Once the kids completed that project, it was onto pretend play.  One of our other neighbor friends, Kaylee, came over with her walkie talkie.  The kids played a popular game they play at our house:  family.  They are all a part of a tribe of hunter gatherers.  Today, their friend, Kaylee, was the mother of the tribe.  She prepared the family's meal with the ingredients the others gathered.  They gathered "wheat" and berries.

Abbey was the sister.  She was helping mom prepare the meal.  As she does with me while I prepare our family meals, she did lots of chatting.

gathering wheat in the field

It was such a fun afternoon.  So although being with my kids all day can be difficult at times, there is also so much simple joy in it!  In ways, I get to be a kid again!

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