Earlier this week we tried out a new park. This particular park is quite an urban park in that it is close to the city centre and is surrounded by roads and housing. I thought we would give it a go because it is always great to find new places to play and this particular park also has a little local museum that I thought Little Man would enjoy wreaking havoc in.
So first off we headed to the museum, mainly because it was wet and I thought it might be sensible to go and have a look around indoors before we got muddy, as we inevitably would. There was an engine in the window which I thought would be of interest to Little Man but he walked in, took one look at it and headed straight back outdoors saying ‘garden’. What a silly Mama I was thinking that we should come all the way to a park to play indoors!
Little Man led me out along a little path, past the playground, who wants to play in there anyway, and straight out to a little planted up area where he could play hide and seek behind the bushes and then run as fast as he could up and down the banks. Far more fun than expensive play equipment! I was surprised how much wildlife was about. There were tons of squirrels, at least two per tree and a flock of fieldfares and other thrushes hanging about. Little Man spent some time watching the birds and squirrels leaping about and chatting to each other and then decided it would be fun to chase them. The squirrels were so bold he even got quite close to a few before he would shriek in excitement and scare them all away.
Eventually and after much puddle splashing and leaf kicking we made it to the playground, having a go on absolutely everything, even if he was really too little and then spending lots of time playing with sticks and some more hide and seek. He really loves to hide away at the moment revelling in the fact that I can’t see him everywhere he goes. He thinks it is hilarious to jump out at me and give me a fright, giggling away as he runs off to hide and then jump out at me again. He spent an age running up and down the zip wire hill mimicking the sound of the magpies and then went on to explore the eyes and nose of the wooden guard and a sleeping bear.
Now he is that bit older it is wonderful watching him interact in a whole new way. His imagination is taking hold and his play is reaching whole new levels, at one point he was fishing with a stick. I’m not even sure where that one came from?! We’ve never been fishing or watched it on telly. His speech is also coming on leaps and bounds with him copying words almost perfectly and then mimicking the sounds of the wildlife we were spotting. He is, as always, very self driven with his own little agenda, always busy, but he is also including me more in his play, inviting me to join in and even directing me in whichever way suits his little world. A whole new world is opening up and it is a joy to be discovering it with him.
Are your little ones discovering the world in whole new ways?