One of my new “Christmas” books is “A Natural Sense of Wonder” by Rick Van Noy. It’s been a fantastic and easy read, which is what I need right now, with the little trio’s lives consuming mine!! I could really relate to it, and everything as a father he does, and goes through to get his children out of those bloomin’ doors to the outside world! He’s quite funny and down to earth with how he writes too…..in my head my writing sounds just like his (hee hee!!!) He’s made me feel more “normal” about what we are doing. I never expected it to make me feel better about how I deal with our three or what we experience, I just got it as it was about connecting children to nature, something I am passionate about. However, it has served a much appreciated second purpose too. I am not alone when I think raising children can have its incredibly frustrating moments, especially going outdoors. It doesn’t mean I don’t love them or want them around. It just means it is a tough job. I love his phrase “If you can’t beat them, they have to join you” referring to things he used to do pre-children…this is a bit like if I want a run….they have to come on various bikes and scooters so some sort of run can be achieved 🙂
My three love the outdoors and nature, we are all happier outdoors, there are less fights and arguments outdoors, and they soon get lost in wonder, amazement, discovery, and all the physical adventures to be had……so what is the issue with going outdoors?
The issue with going outdoors is in winter (today sits at -10), it takes a lot of clothing to be worn to be able to enjoy being outdoors….life is not good cold or wet! There are three children to get all this claptrap onto. Despite ample room to put on said claptrap, it invariably turns into fisticuffs about who’s in whose way, and who knocked over whose boots….oh the joys. I thank my lucky stars that we’ve moved on from first of all catching, then wrestling 2 crazy twins into all their outdoor clothing, and they can do it themselves now! Then on top of that we have a little home boy, who hates the idea that he might have to leave the house at some point in the day. Mini man no.2 is known to say things like, “please can we never go outside again Mamma” or “I never want to go for another walk”! He, perhaps more than the other 2, gets the most benefit from going outdoors. He needs the physical challenges that are out there. He needs to let off steam and frustration from being bossed around by his big sister and his more dominant twin. He is a very sensitive and emotional little guy, and nature seems to just even him out a little, and put him in a happier place.
Like the father writes in his book, I try and give them warning to make sure they are prepared and there is no sudden extraction from whatever indoor activity they are engrossed in. His and our experiences of getting out of the house to go outdoors follow along the same tracks, making what I experience with my three feel a lot more normal. I love how he writes about the car seats and anger……who knew putting three children into a car, could cause quite a patient Mamma to want to throw the seats out and set fire to them! We have to have a certain order of the children getting in, as once one is in, it is so hard to plug the other two in! The little lady has to sit in the middle to make the seats fit, and has to virtually squash mini man no.1 in his seat, leaning over, so I can find her seat belt plug which hides under her booster! Then I can only get number three in by completely rotating his chair and then twisting him back…..and yes, after each child I invariably whack my head (so that’s three times) on the car roof. This week has brought another issue too, while they race around procrastinating about leaping into the car, my fingers at -10 are getting to such a painful point, rendering them near useless on the doing seat belts up function!
Finally when we are all out, we are all happy, and we are all enjoying whatever the weather is throwing at us…..it was worth all the effort….right??!!!! For this…..most definitely!
I love this book, and I am so glad I got it 🙂