A Little Chalk And A Lot of Imagination

Charlotte and Evan created a chalk town a few weeks ago. They had roads, houses, and stores. Creating their town and driving around with their trucks consumed much of one afternoon and evening. Lately I've been making encouraging them to stay outside each afternoon until dinner is ready. It's so good for them. The fresh air and exercise gives them such an appetite. It's great for their brother/sister relationship too. I love that they're close enough in age to be able to really play well together. They've loved their time outside. Every few days Charlotte will tell me she doesn't want to play outside but within a few minutes, she's running through the yard playing a new game with Evan and begging to go back outside after dinner.

It's also been great for Jon and I. We have time to talk while I cook dinner. We can actually have a conversation about our day without interuption.

I started this "outside until dinner" time early in the Spring so they could get used to it as summer approached. When we have a hot day, I send them out with buckets of water and rags to wash their ride-on cars. This summer I plan to fill the wading pools most days to give them a chance to splash around when they get hot. Of course, in the summer they'll be outside earlier in the morning and later in the evening to avoid the hotest part of the day.

I think it's about time kids spent more time outside and less time playing battery-powered toys that do the thinking for them. Fresh air, sunshine, and time without parent-directed activities.... important parts of childhood, if you ask me.