OOPS I totally fell behind! With the School holidays I kept going to the playground but just had no time to sit and write about it and then Baloo got diagnosed with
Otitis Media with Effusion Glue ear, meaning a quick day trip to the hospital for Bilateral Tympanostomy Tube insertion Grommets. This threw my normal Playground/blogging routine further into disarray. Naturally at that point procrastination kicked in and I started scrolling through social media rather than actually typing anything! Such is life. So today I am looking Back to 4 weeks ago, during the school holidays when the kids and I went to a small Adventure playground in rural South Australia. We were having a long weekend away with my Mum for the school holidays and drove past a playground we did not know about. It was about 10 Minutes from Bordertown and I think we will definitely go back. The weather was horrendous when we went so we had to stay away from the flooded equipment, swampy mud pits and slippery slide but next time we are in the area we will definitely go back to try the giant slide!
It had rained most of the night prior and it rained the entire time we were there, mostly a constant drizzle but a few times we had to seek refuge in the cubby house (yes me too). The best part was the kids could not have cared less! I said when we got there that it was too wet, we could stay 15 minutes and then we had to go but we all had so much fun we totally lost track of time and stayed over an hour. It is so easy to get caught up in the seriously adult business of staying dry and keeping warm that we miss the FUN. The reality was that it was not really cold, just wet and kids love water so it did not slow them down, I actually think they loved it a little more.
The stand out feature of the play ground was the Fort (including the giant slide). Knowing it had been wet I had grabbed a towel for any wet slides before we left. When helping little Hulk put on his shoes I put it down by the back door and left it there so we did not have anyway to use the slide as while the kids would not have minded wet pants, I did not want soaking car seats for the rest of the weekend so we will have to make a return trip on a dryer day. Unfortunately the level of rain did make it really muddy and slippery but again while I was worried the kids thought it was awesome! We still had a lot of fun climbing up and taking the view from the top!
The advantage of everything being so wet was that the kids had to stay away from the swings, spinner and see-saw and had so much fun on the tire trail and the climbing ropes. They entertained them longer than their usual favourites too so it goes to show how much they love to use their bodies to explore.
I have been introducing the kids to my reality TV obsession by watching Survivor with them and it was on this day I realised I had converts. They were all climbing on the ropes and asked if we could “Play Survivor”. I assumed they meant the challenges not eating nothing but rice, beans and coconuts for 39 days so I set them each up on an individual Reward challenge based on their ages and climbing ability and channelled my inner Jeff Probst..”. “Survivors ready…. GO!” when I stopped calling out commentary they started with their own making up an opposing team and calling out the slips and falls of both sides. I could not resist but join in and have fun with them. The serious side of parenting (the seemingly endless cooking and cleaning, the worrying and planning) was left in the car and we had a ball. I cannot remember letting go and enjoying the experience as much before. Even when Little Hulk had a fairly big fall, we stopped for a cuddle but I didn’t fret that we should leave and he just got up and tried again.
Ultimately The kids and I all had an amazing time. I learnt to let go of a little of the seriousness of parenting, to ALWAYS pack gumboots and that it is the small things that matter. Me joining in the play meant more to the kids than sitting on the sidelines and watching, and it was definitely good fun!
Can you think of a time you joined in with the kids and had more fun than you expected?