Thursday, June 28, 2012
Blogs, tweets, Facebook updates, internet articles, commercials, and news posts come at us at a rapid pace every moment of every day. It is challenging to sift through the wealth of information firing at us, especially in the middle of cooking dinner, listening to your child talk about his day, and planning for your important meeting at work tomorrow. Where did those seemingly endless summer days go? When we were young children, played outside all day with friends, and built tree houses? As adults, we are now faced with the dilemma of finding the time to help our children experience those precious, long summer days. How do we fit that into our adult days? Does our family budget allow for such experiences? Here are easy, simple and fun "green" activities for you and your family. These suggestions are meant to enhance your life, to bring balance to your family's life, and not to overwhelm you with more tasks. First, take a walk in the local park. When was the last time you went for a walk with your family? You and your child have energy, and physical movement will actually give you more energy as it makes you physically stronger and lifts your mood. While you are on this walk, depending on the age of your children, ask them to find three different living critters in the park during the walk. You can add to this activity for older children by asking them to photograph or draw the three new critters they find. This simple activity will provide quality time, laughter, and will refresh you all for re-entry into your busy lifestyle. Second, get the most out of your day and your family time with a green project such as planting and tending to a vegetable or flower garden. Skills learned from planting a flower are much more than physical. Children and parents increase their level of compassion, ability to nurture, and capability to focus. All of these benefits to children and parents are possible and likely with the simple tasks of planting a seed, watering, providing sun and attention. As you model nurturing skills, your children reap the reward of learning how to grow and nurture in return. Just the simple act of planting a flower creates not only a more beautiful landscape in your yard, but also a more compassionate child. As the seasons change, more free and green activities will be shared here for your family. Please remember to keep it simple, keep it quality, and have fun.