The children came to play and explore.
It was the last day in November and so mild that heavy jackets came off quickly.
It was a glorious day to spend most of our time outdoors. The days of sunshine and warmth were limited.
The pond was one of their favorite spots. They fished there in spring and autumn, and now it had covered itself up with a layer of ice.
Winter is on its way. Despite the mild temperature of the day, the cold nights have solidified the pond.
It's fun for the children to see the changes each season brings to the areas they play in.
How thick is this ice? they wanted to know.
The stones didn't even break through, they just slid across.
One by one, the children searched for sticks to break the ice.
The sticks didn't break through when they tossed them on the pond though.
So they came up with a better plan.
chop . . .
chop . . .
Soon everyone was chopping.
and had fun breaking the ice.
They decided to check out all the other areas around the pond, and even stuck their feet in once they broke through.
Some areas had less ice, some had more.
They explored around the *island*
One chopped with a stick, the other scooped up the ice.
A ping ping ping sound was heard when the bits of ice and pebbles they threw slid across the pond.
They noticed when they threw a rock in, and it broke the ice, it made air bubbles.
The larger the rock, the bigger the air bubble.
They said it looked like glass. . .
and forgot how cold it was.
The children could have lasted for hours doing all of this, over and over again. In fact, they did do it for hours.
It's this connection with nature that takes precedent over anything else we may do. Everything else can wait for another time. Nothing is as important as being
IN the world, IN nature, exploring, observing, discovering and enjoying themselves while doing it. It is something they will always remember and always treasure.
And it is the people, who have that connection with nature, who will care for it in the future. Like the children.
Yes! My son and a friend were doing this last week at a local pond. Yes, one sneaker slipped off a log and went in, producing a laugh, but it wasn't unbearably cold and we could keep going and climb our favorite boulders. These glorious outdoor days are so, so good for us!!!!! love, Beth
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