Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The substance of my days...

Halloween crafting

We all know, life has its rhythms and seasons, the ebb and flow. And one of the major "flows" of life for me these days is time spent with children. Duh, you may say, but I'm referring to a different quality of time spent with kids. For months now, maybe 9-10, I've been engaging in a childcare exchange with a very close friend, Nora. Her kids, Zephyr and Jubi are absolutely bestest buddies with my two youngest, Grady and Ainslie. Both pairs, the "girls" and the "boys" are within a year of age of each other, and they just get along fabulously. So, once or twice a week, I have our young friends over for about 3.5 hours. The kids pair off and play in such a way that I almost always am left with this idyllic sense of "Aha, this is the beauty of childhood!" Their nonsense games and imaginative play leave me admiring the essence of their quirky fun and their ability to find ways to engage and occupy themselves in any number of myriad ways. While seldom do I need to actively work to engage them, I've found that this has freshened my perspective of playing with kids. I enjoy thinking of games (like number scavenger hunts) and crafts (today, sheet ghosts, clay skulls and pipe cleaner skeletons).

block city

Another fabulous benefit for our family is that on days when our friends are over, the tv is never even a thought. Television and my children's ridiculous obsession with it have always been one of my top struggles. They don't need the television though when there's hands-on, wild fun right in their own home. I don't have to remind them to go outside because they're eager to play there together. They even eat better when they're all together. :) I know, I sound like I'm a promoter for my particular situation but it's become such a joy and made for such easy, happy days that I can't help but gush. :)

block rocket flying to the (foil) moon
I'll be the first to admit that my own children have and do often tax my patience with their constant noise (I do love me some peace and quiet) and clamoring for me to play yet another pretend game in which I'm coached to repeat inane "lines" that I'm not allowed to change. Somehow, though, the scheduled built in playmates have really taken the pressure off of me as my kids now have even better playmates than ol' mom. AND, don't get me wrong, the one or two mornings to myself per week when my kids are at their friends' house don't hurt my overall appreciation for our situation. That is when I do get the chance to have peace and quiet, and all manner of other things that aren't as easy to come by when the rugrats are under foot. :)

camping in the kitchen

tea party in big sister's bed


noradawn said...

Aw, Renee, it's the blog that's been forming in little sentences here and there in my mind, but is far from coming to fruition. Also, it reminds me so much of my childhood growing up with my best friend. Thank you so much for taking the time to honor our kids' friendships by writing this blog. And you know I'll never be able to thank you enough for helping raise my children. I loved looking at all the projects Zephyr brought home today. He was so proud :)

connorlove said...

Well the gangs all here! I just blogged for the first time in ages, and also caught up with you and your little ones, and Nora's to boot!

Artistmama said...

Looks like lots of fun! So awesome when kids can grow up together like that.

Love your new profile pic!