Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Free Unstructured Play Outside

I have been trying to make it a point lately to get my kids outdoors for plenty of unstructured free play time. There is a wooded area near our house that we make a short hike to and then just set up camp. It is perfect because there are two pretty steep hills on either side for the kids to run down and two trails off into the woods as well. There is a perfect fallen tree for me to sit on and read.

No organized crafts, no organized sports, no pressure, no screens, no mommy playing with them. Just free unhurried time to be kids outside in a natural and interesting environment. They love it. I love it. Everyone gets along. It just doesn't get any better than that!

But first we had to visit our absolute favorite dogs (and pups) at the dairy farm.







 I had to tell Mirek that, despite their size, they are not horses.


 Into the woods.

















 And back home for my coffee stout.


Monday, December 15, 2014

Mostly Outside

We have done a lot since the last time I posted. We got a Christmas tree!


 In our part of Texas, the leaves really start to fall throughout December. Every day is spent outside. My neighbors probably want me to rake, but then the kids would complain that they are "bored."


 I always dream of a homestead, but I am thankful that my kids at least have our little space while most are confined within the four walls of a classroom.







Anything that we do at night is not recorded by my camera. I suppose I just have not mastered the art of night photography. 

See.




Whatever.

We went to Christmas in the Park at Sheldon Lake State Park during the LIGHT of day.

We started off with some Christmas crafts.





 Then off on our nature walk.

We saw a small alligator!





 Mirek decided, either because it looked a little bit like a corn dog or because the other kids persuaded him, that he would eat a cattail.


 Then he washed it down with water.


 And then, since he was wet, I had to carry him. If I did not wish to carry him, his legs failed to work.


 We climbed the observation tower...to break dance.



 It was windy.



 We had a picnic and I realized that everything takes on a new dimension of funny when up high in the sky.






 Back down to earth.






 Taven refuses to smile for pictures.


 The kids found a natural seesaw.