The thought of growing old doesn’t bother me. I look forward to retiring and doing more charity work. Being a grandparent would be awesome and I’m excited to inherit my mom’s white duck-fluff hair. That said, I don’t want to grow old and suffer with poor health or a cranky attitude! But I also don’t want to wish any time away because life is good.
Responsibilities and hectic lives sure can suck the fun, curiosity, wonder and spontaneous natural movement out of adults, but that does’t mean we can’t add a little extra play time whenever possible 😉
If you ask a kid to go fetch something from another room, they may hop, spin and slither all the way there and then figure out a way to balance the object on their head all the way back to you. While I don’t imagine adults will start slithering to the kitchen to grab a fork, it certainly is inspiring (and often hilarious!) to watch and think about kids’ movement.
We built our indoor monkey bar / climbing wall / jungle gym to encourage more frequent and various types of movement, even in the winter. But getting outside is also important.
Though I’ve lived in snowy Canada all my life (aside from one blissful year spent cucumber picking and beach hopping Down Under), I’ve never been a huge fan of winter. As a kid, you make the most of it. Growing up, we had a blast climbing and jumping out of trees into huge snowbanks, towing our GT racers behind ATVs and building snow mazes on the frozen lake. Aaaaah memories.
To promote the same sense of winter fun for our kids – and our (overly-prone-to-hibernation) selves – we have built a luge track in our back yard for the past two years. Together as a family we shovel, sculpt, take test runs and make course corrections (though my husband definitely gets the MVP award for his dedication to smoothing out the track even on those -20 degree evenings!). This year, we built a longer run, with more turns and added a ‘launch pad’ using some of our pallet stash.
Thanks to this track, we breathed a lot more clean fresh winter air, got extra vitamin D, climbed hills and worked on our balancing skills and body control more than ever! Oh, and laughed till our cheeks hurt.
You definitely don’t need to build a luge track in your backyard to embrace your inner child. There are plenty of fun (and free!) winter activities to get you moving, playing and laughing like a kid – an adventure in the woods (via snowshoe, skis or sleds), building forts and obstacle courses, or visiting a snow-covered neighbourhood playground. Fluffy snow also makes a great spot for practicing handstands 🙂
And here is our montage from last year.