If you have a toddler or a pre-schooler, read till the end. The other day I was on the playground with Lexi when some of the older kids started climbing a tree. Obviously, Lexi instantly said "Lexi, too! Lexi, too!" So we walked over the the leaning tree and watched the kids take their turns climbing it while she bounced up and down, chanting "Lexi too climb tree!!!" When the kids were done, I helped her get started and she happily and proudly attempted to repeat what she saw the other kids doing. As I stood there helping her get higher and higher on the tree, it made me think of two things: 1.We should take her to the Robinson's Tree House at Disney (lol) and 2. What an AMAZING moment! This is her FIRST time climbing a tree! Such a true childhood experience. So fun and free. Do you remember being kids? Scaling the impossible heights, sitting on branches, basking in warm sunlight and just enjoying being independent and free? Those are some of the happiest simplest times.
I continued thinking about how she is yet to have so many experiences that are all kinds of wonderful, especially for the first time, and how lucky I am that I get to participate in them and re-live them through her eyes all over again. The next train of thought happened to be that with our busy lives we often do not even THINK of these experiences until our kids bring them to our attention (like Lexi asking to go jump in puddles after watching Daniel Tiger, a thought that hadn't occurred to me at the time because we get rain so rarely). I have been on the look-out for such experiences, especially if they somehow connect with her books, like her Curious George books. The other day, we had a strong thunderstorm, so we sat near a window and watched the lightning, waited for the thunder and then finally heard the rain. This was a total play on a Daniel Tiger episode with our own twist, where we would make sounds every time the lightning hit (Blast!) or we heard thunder (Rrrrrrooooooaaaar!) or the rain (Dibble dibble dop dop!). This was a lot of fun for her and us and we need MORE experiences like this. It helps spice up some of those boring days that we all have occasionally. It helps get to know your child better. It helps discover their talents and interests. And it makes for WICKEDLY GOOD MEMORIES! I think that we could all help each other create these experiences and enjoy them if we put together an experience scavenger hunt.
A list of toddler and preschooler experiences that can be done once a week.
A toddler bucket list, a scavenger hunt of sorts, must do's for young children! Snow angels (or sand angels), tree climbing, shell gathering, movie and snack night, puddle jumping, model boat shows, orchestra concert, picnics, etc etc. These are just the examples of things I want to do with Lexi. So I'd like all of your help. If we can all work together to create an extensive and DOABLE list of experiences. Any ideas are welcome! Those that don't make it into the top 52 can be put onto the next year's list. THE LIST IS READY HERE What are the things you are dying to do with your child? What experiences did you create for them that you're so proud of? What did they love doing? Once the list is done, we can get started creating these memories. Taking one day a week to MAKE an experience for our children. Take 1 (or more) photo capturing the experience and sharing it with everyone. I will make it a weekly blog meme, so if you have a blog, you could post it on your blog as a once a week thing. If you don't have a blog, I still want to find a way for you to share this with others, so I will write more about details on that once I figure it out. Each week, I would love to display 6 best photos (not by skill, but by the capture) of each week's experience from other people (if they would like it). I want this to be a community thing. Rather than women constantly judging or attacking each other on the internet, I want to create an experience for us women to share our children's life moments with each other.
So are you up for it?
Again here are the steps: 1. Have a child between 1-4 years of age 2. Go over the list of experiences and compile your own, use ours and combine several entries. 3. Do one experience a week and capture the moment on your camera/iPhone 4. Share (or not) the experience and the photo 5. Share this idea with as other women who have children of the same age. We'll call it CHILDHOOD UNPLUGGED!