Friday, August 1, 2014

Finding a Park To Play on an Off Day

Did you ever have one of those days?

You know, one of those days where nothing seems to go right?

That's the kind of day we had yesterday.

It wasn't exactly bad, but it sure was stressful dealing with curve balls thrown at me with every turn.  It started out innocent enough.

The boys and I decided to head out on a field trip.  It was a beautiful day and we wanted to try out a new place-- Bakerwoods.



I've heard good things about the place.  It's cute with I-spy gnome trails, animals, and woods.  It's free and not too far away.  I thought it might be shady with trees and a perfect place for a picnic.

The GPS said it would be 40 minutes until we reached Bakerwoods and we settled in to listen to our book.
 
We were awfully disappointed to get to Bakerwoods and find out that they are only open Fri- Sun!

I was a bit miffed since their website said nothing about times, days or hours but I quickly turned on the GPS and hit local area attractions; trying to find something in the surrounding area to do together.

Less than ten minutes down the road we found Ashford Memorial Park.  Never sure what the "park" is going to be like when it's just a name and address on the GPS I was already trying to think of where else we could go.

Luckily, The park was beautiful!

We stopped to have our picnic lunch and the boys played on the playground equipment.  We still soaked in some sunshine and had fun but my heart wasn't really in it.

I felt like I wasn't really living in the moment and "there" with my kids since I was still trying to think of something more that we could do and I was trying to get a hold of my sister so she could know what was going on.

I really wanted to walk in the woods and experience something more than sitting and watching my kids play.  The curve balls of the day were piling up and all my joy was slowly ebbing.  (We had already had some minor issues with grocery shopping, our washing machine and even just putting our groceries away).

Luckily, the boys still seemed to be having fun anyway.









I spotted a hiking trail and persuaded the boys to go check it out.  I was still thinking of other places we could possibly stop and hike or go for a nature walk on our way home.

We got to the trail head and found that it wasn't a mowed or groomed trail (which, ordinarily would not have been a big deal but we all had flip flops on).  We all elected not to go traipsing through the tall grass and I couldn't help but think it was too bad.

On my GPS I had noticed a thin blue line indicating a stream or a river that I'm sure we would have been walking near.

Instead we walked around the ball fields and saw a lot of grasshoppers, butterflies, wild flowers and plants.

Again; the boys were content and pointing to things excitedly and I felt like I was distancing myself from it all.

I was busy texting back and forth with my sister telling her not to bother coming since Bakerwoods was closed and I didn't have any other great ideas of things to do.  The boys all agreed they had fun, had had enough and wanted to go swimming at home. 



While I still had a hard time shaking off my funk from our day I had to marvel at the boys and how they handled it all.

Sometimes I am struck by just how wonderful it is to be a kid.  Sure they were disappointed our day didn't turn out as planned too but they were completely happy to find a new park and play for a bit.

AH! The power of a new park to play at!

That's childhood magic.



 

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