The Art of Play

“An unbridled imagination is the fountain of youth; it’s what keeps us young at heart.”
― Richelle E. Goodrich

There are mornings I wake up and wish that my body was as young as my mind.  It takes a little longer to limber up the body and prepare it for the day.  It doesn’t help that I have a wonderful back porch that beckons to me and says sit, have some coffee and enjoy all the morning activity,   How can you turn that down?

What does get me moving is the prospect of family visiting.  Not too long ago I had a young visitor.  One of my grandsons.  We saw a play at school, ate lunch and brought him home with us to play.  I have a huge collection of toys that belonged to my boys.  Legos, PlayMobile, Brio and G, my grandson, has the imagination to bring them alive.

G playing with some of his father's toys that I have kept over the years.
G playing with some of his father’s toys that I have kept over the years.

He sits in my upstairs work area and plays while I sew.  There is a quiet rhythm to our work/play.  He quietly talks through the activities of his play while my sewing machine hums away.  I remember the acting out of play.  Much of it was spent assigning tasks and actions and what everyone would do or say.  Listening to him brought up so many childhood memories and I was so happy to see real play hadn’t changed that much.

Eventually we needed some some outdoor play.  Part of me hated to leave the cool interior for the meltdown that was outside, but I also remembered children are more immune to the heat than those of an age.  We went to a wonderful little park located in a shady part of our small little downtown area.  It is his favorite park and he always wants to visit.

Walking across the plank bridge,
Walking across the plank bridge,

There is a playset there that has all sorts of imagination built into it.  Again, I listen as he adds a storyline to his play.  What a marvel is a child’s imagination.  Looking through their eyes brings back wonderful memories and refreshes the child within.  He conquered the rock wall like it was the highest mountain.  Look, Nana!  We clapped with joy.

G on slide in park.
G on slide in park.

Every slide was explored up and down.  Talking the whole time.  It was a lazy summer afternoon… until…

One very unhappy boy!
One very unhappy boy!

One very unhappy boy.  The face was so comically unhappy I wanted to laugh, but he was seriously unhappy about something.

The lecture.
The lecture.

And before I could ask him what was wrong, this happened!  I choked so I wouldn’t laugh.  He was lecturing a bee for upsetting his fun and not just moving along.  Needless to say, our park time was over and even with the heat it was wonderful fun.

“It is a happy talent to know how to play.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

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