This month’s regular guest post from outdoors mummy blogger, Leila Balin, is all about fun with the garden hose……
Little Man, like most pre-schoolers, loves water play. It is one of his top garden activities, whether it be playing with his water table, helping Daddy wash the cars or a spot of puddle splashing. More recently he has discovered the hose and the fact that he can move water away from the tap with this long green snake has him completely enthralled.
His play started off mimicking his Daddy, pouring the hose over the cars, not so much cleaning as moving the dirt around the bodywork. Then he realised he could clean other things too. Thanks to Daddy, Little Man has a small collection of garden tractors, go karts and scooters, all in various states from brand new to barely worth saving but he adores each and every one of them. Once Little Man cottoned on that he could use the hose to clean these too there was no stopping him. He started off moving from vehicle to vehicle using the hose to clean each one. As he worked his way around them he discovered all sorts of ways he cold make the water flow around the vehicles. Poking the hose into the middle of the go kart wheels he looked like a mechanic changing tyres, fascinated by the change in sound as he moved the hose into and back out of the central holes. He found holes in the plastic tractor engines and watched as the water worked its way through the nooks and crannies of the plastic and out the other side. He then moved onto filling the digger buckets up to the brim and then letting the water crash to the floor as he tipped the tippers. All in all he was there for about 2 hours, completely absorbed and oblivious to anything else happening around him.
As he worked a patch of lower ground slowly filled up to form a lovely big muddy puddle around his feet and once the spell of the hose was broken there was lots of lovely muddy puddle splashing too. I have to admit I did feel a tad guilty about the amount of water little man used during his play but he was getting so much out of it I couldn’t stop him.
Taking the time to stop and watch him gave me a well needed rest but it also took me back to a year or so ago when I would stop and watch far more than I do now. It was glorious too see him so deep in play and watching his personality develop, some of his mannerisms are so like his Dads and his determination comes from me, all combining to mix into his own special little self. Watching him play is such a delight and something I need to take more time to do.
What was the last activity your little one got lost in? Did you stop to watch or did you use the time to get busy? If you got busy I would thoroughly recommend allowing yourself some time just to sit and observe, it really is time well spent.
Leila writes a personal, nature inspired blog at Mud Marvellous Mud. She is passionate about connecting children to nature and writes about her son’s experiences as they explore together. She is trained to Forest Schools and Beach Schools level 3 and is currently studying for an Open University Open Degree.