When the kids are kvetchy and especially in the evening as we head toward dinner time, I will often take the kids out on a walk. Sometimes we have a destination in mind as we did on Sunday. We headed to the grocery store to pick up some essentials. It gives my daughter a good walk, my son a ride or walk depending on the amount of time available, and both of them receive fresh air. The constant repetitive chatter from my daughter and the occasional screeches from my son get drowned out by the passing cars, buses, planes, and other city noise. They are not bothering our neighbors if they are not at home to run and jump on their ceiling, and they tend to be less fussy when they are outside anyway. It is a win-win. Even when I am exhausted and want to just collapse on the sofa, it is easier to walk, and in turn the walk makes the rest of the evening easier, too.
Tag Archives: walking
On Thursday, I walked and walked and walked. Some of it was at my fast pace, some was at my daughter’s fast pace, some at her normal, and some was at my son’s slow meander. With the threat of thunderstorms throughout the day, we always had raincoats at hand, but the heat made them stifling. They often rode under the stroller. My daughter walked to school and ran and skipped on the way home. My son walked a solid mile and followed that by an hour in a playground where he climbed ladders and steep slopes. I walked to and from my daughter’s school twice, for an hour while she was at her chorus rehearsal, and all over the playground for an hour as well.
I am sure we all have tight legs and sore feet. I hope this will lead to a late sleep in for the kids.
After a few chilly and drizzly days, Monday was glorious. It reached the low 60s and was sunny, so we walked the 30 minutes to and from school. When I say we, my daughter and I walked to school in the morning. I walked back with my son walking about a third of the way. I then walked back to school at noon with my son snoozing in the stroller, and my daughter and I walked back home with a stop for the toilet at a convenient store en route. My son walked a few blocks on the way home, too, and then he promptly slept for three hours.
When cooped up inside, my daughter’s incessant and loud voice becomes overwhelming, but on a wonderful day outdoors, the passing buses and trucks just overpower her volume. She can shout as loudly as she wants, and it doesn’t hurt my brain.
I have a friend with whom I recently reconnected on Facebook. One wonderful thing about this new connection is her wonderful nature photos she regularly posts. They capture the essence of an experience and resonate deeply with how I see nature. I do my best with my camera phone and often think about carrying something slightly better. I have aspirations of capturing those moments that happen daily as I am walking–sunlit fronds of grass, evening’s warm glow softening trees, snails in their slow dances.
Probably I won’t carry the camera any time soon and add another hobby to my overcrowded life, but the idea pulls at me in a way that forecasts the future. For the time being I’ll just appreciate the heck out of my friends images.
I imagine that I acquired this appreciation from nature from my parents who probably see these moments and encounters with nature in a similar way. We certainly spent plenty of time camping, hiking, and generally being outside. Even if I am not capturing these instances, when I am with my kids, I am developing their awareness by pointing out what calls to me. I am layering thousands, millions of images into their consciousness.
One would think I’d do some planning or even just that I’d make sure my destination was open, but that is just not my way. It resulted in, again, showing up at a closed attraction. This time, I took my son to the Boston Children’s Museum after dropping of my daughter at school. Unfortunately they are in the midst of repairs and open back up on Tuesday, a day after we showed up.
As a result, we walked along the boardwalk that overlooks the harbor. It was a beautiful day, and my son found multitudes of things to interest him from the fence to big slabs of marble in front of the museum. Boats moving by and planes flying overhead added to the distractions. One thing that did not register on my son’s radar but really wowed me was the walking bridge was not available because it had been rotated. I did not know it even still worked! It barely seems save enough to walk over.
So often when I am out walking with the kids, it is the journey and what we see on the way that makes the day special. Both kids love to stop and watch construction vehicles!
Thursday was my second Thursday with the routine established. The day looked like this:
- Got up early with kids, around 6:30, after my son had been awake since 5:30.
- Got them changed/toileted, breakfasted, and ready to go. Even got a shower in, myself.
- Walked my daughter to school with my son in the stroller. Took about 40 minutes to walk. She started grumbling, but then we started talking about the day. She forgot she was walking.
- Took the T downtown with my son after dropping off my daughter. He walked and walked and walked.
- Went to the aquarium and watched turtles, fish, and penguins. Loved the jellyfish.
- Took the T back to pick up my daughter but got there too early. Headed to a park, and son took a short nap.
- Picked up daughter, hopped back on the T, headed home.
- Got a few last groceries on the way home.
- Put son to bed after a short lunch.
- Made apple pies, lentil dish that had everything from farm and garden in it, and started in on pickled beets.
- Ate dinner including sharing it with our downstairs neighbors.
- Bath and bed.
- After kids were in bed at 7:15, I headed downstairs to our neighbors and played games.
- After that I finished the beets and then washed mountains of dishes.
That was a full day, and it was great. This is why I am working part time at school. I am working full time at home on these days, and Thursday is the ideal. Throughout the afternoon, my daughter kept saying, “Daddy, I love you!” She had a good day, too.