The past few days have seen a dramatic increase in the amount of squabbling, arguing, and whinging going on in our home. We were in need of some emergency healing nature power! I was getting close to the end of my tether with my trio. I’d seen everything over the last few days. We had death stares and grumbles from the little lady because someone dared to choose the same cereal to eat as her! I’d seen breakdowns over someone wanting the same jam on their toast as someone else. There had been fighting over who was taking what to lay the table. Twin 1 had been hiding twin 2’s outdoor clothing during the mad morning dash to get out the house, resulting in a distraught, not ready twin 2. Twin 1 had also been pushing twin 2 over into the door. The list just goes on…..I was coming down stairs in the morning, and my first words for the past few days to my children had been cross and frustrated ones. To say I was exasperated is an understatement! So we packed the car and headed off for an afternoon of that well known remedy….healing nature.
Being surrounded by nature has so many benefits, and the main one I was in search of today was the gentle lapping sounds of the waves (hopefully I’d be able to hear them over the bickering!). This sound instantly de-stresses me, lowers my heart rate, and I find my lost patience again. Nature is a well known regulator of stress, so it’s a very valid reason to seek it out in times like this. However, the benefits would not just be mine. Nature play is known to resolve conflict and encourage team work….well, hello….if there was anything these three needed reminding of, it was that they liked each other, could enjoy each other, and play together! They could also do with a little de-stressing too! There are so many other benefits of nature play that I have written about already, http://mammasschool.co.uk/parenting/outdoor-play-children-natures-sanity/, but for today and our current situation, these were my main aims.
The children settled into their play fast, while I lit a fire and prepared some food, breathing a sigh of relief as I listened to their happy chatter. All three worked in pairs at some point, in varying combinations. Our little lady was engrossed in making a complex river and dam construction from redirecting the sea. Lots of learning thrown in to her afternoon, while the boys mainly busied themselves building castles and moats, and using their dumper trucks to transport construction sand. The food was well received in a opportunistic break from play, but they hurried back once it was scoffed down. I sat back and watched them play, and enjoyed them in that moment, after a painful few days. My plan had worked!
We headed back to the car after over three hours chilling on the beach, nature having worked its magic while we were all immersed in it. As they clambered back in, the bickering started up again over the seat belts and who was in whose way!! Well, all good things must come to an end I guess, but at least my patience fuel tanks were topped up again to deal with it all and we’d had a lovely few positive hours!! However, I can see the wine tank in the fridge being a little more depleted later, and thank goodness we’ve just had Easter so the chocolate supply is high 😉