This month’s regular post from outdoors mummy blogger, Leila Balin is all about climbing trees ….
Sunday was a stunning day for a walk. We didn’t get out in the morning down to one thing or another but as soon as Little Man woke up from his nap we were racing out the door. Little Man was still quite tired so his sleepy bunny came along for the ride and he was carried most of the way round. Poor hubby didn’t realise it was going to be quite such a workout for him!
About half way round we stopped to check out a tractor working one of the fields and Little Man started to perk up. He was more than happy to stop and watch the tractor work away and then say ‘bye bye’ as it moved onto the next field. We also moved on and worked our way down to a little clearing with a bench so that Daddy could have a rest.
Before we got to the bench we came across a lovely fallen tree. We had a good look, checking out the lichens along the trunk and before we knew it Little Man was asking to get on it. He wanted to go up quite high so Daddy got up there with him and for a few minutes he was happy to stand there and enjoy the view. Then all of a sudden sleepy bunny got thrown at me and Little Man was off!
At first he was scrambling his way through the top branches until Daddy could go no further with him and we encouraged him to come back to the clearer part of the trunk. From then on it was a continuous up and down, holding onto Daddy for support. We were there for ages as Little Man practiced his balancing skills and started to get braver and braver. Soon enough he was jumping and hopping along the trunk in true toddler style with a mahusive grin on his face.
He stopped for a short rest from balancing whilst he played horsey and explored the trunk of the tree with his hands and then it was off for round two. Who needs playgrounds when nature provides trees! It was amazing to watch and fabulous to see his confidence grow. He surprised us as to how sure footed he was and how quickly he wanted to climb higher without our help. Maybe if we had been able to get underneath the tree to support him then we would have let him go a bit further but with all the branches there was no way we could.
Little Man came away happy and we had one last surprise before we made it home. Walking along one of the fields behind our house we came across a small herd of deer. As we stopped to stare they stared back only disappearing as we headed up the path towards them. Little Man was mesmerised and so excited he decided to dance most of the way home. Sometimes I wonder where all their energy comes from!
We are already looking forward to our next tree climbing experience. I am sure we will be back to visit this one but it would also be fun to find some new ones. Have your little ones been tree climbing recently? Do they have a favourite tree?
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.