Wednesday, January 30, 2013


January 29

I had to resort to extra creativity and a little fibbing to get us out today. My little one had preschool and was so tuckered out that our driveway play only lasted about a minute. She was hungry, tired, ready for snuggles. The afternoon wore on and I needed some reason to get us outside. I found myself letting hour after hour pass and we were still in the house, it seemed like such a huge effort just to open the front door. So I bent the truth, just a tad. "Let's go check the mail!" I announced. Now I knew the mail would not be delivered for hours, but this was just the push we needed to get us going.

As usual, as soon as we are in the fresh air we feel good and there are endless things to do and explore and imagine. We do check the mailbox and I feign ignorance at why it is empty. We then decide that our ceramic turtle should be moved to "trick Daddy," as we like to say. We move the turtle periodically and Daddy has to come home and find the little critter's new spot. Then we play chase for a while, look at clouds, and listen to birds. We talk about how to stay safely in the yard and not go into the street. My little one is just getting to the point where I can explain the boundaries of our play area and feel pretty sure she will not just decide to run where she wants. A year ago, she would head straight for the street and think it hysterical when I would scoop her up and bring her back to the grass. Needless to say, playing in the front yard is much easier now.

Our hiding spot
My older daughter is back riding the bus home from school and we decide to wait for her outside in our new secret spot. We crouch down next to a tree and peer through the bushes at the street. This is great fun. We see the yellow bus swoosh into view and giggle thinking about our surprise welcome. We watch as feet come off the bus, move around to the front, pause for the driver's OK, and then walk toward us. We turn and watch as she walks slowly across the yard turning to wave to her friends. And then her eyes spot us, and she smiles. "Surprise!" shouts my little one.

Off comes the backpack and coat. My tired first grader is suddenly energized  "I want to climb this tree! Help me!"

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