Thursday, September 25, 2014

Cool Happenings at the Local Park

I currently work part-time, and I try to take the kiddos somewhere to do something fun on my 2 days off each week. On Thursday, I took them to our favorite park. Some really cool things happened that I feel compelled to share.

Since everyone seems to get so bent out of shape about every single opinion in existence, I'll preface by stating that everyone parents differently and I am sharing my own thoughts and opinions.  You don't have to agree with me.  I won't be hurt.

Anyway, helicopter parents.....ahh, helicopter parents.  That must be exhausting.  That's all I'll say about that.

I pushed each of my boys on the swings for about 10 minutes, and then sat on a bench to watch them play.  I wasn't on my cell phone, though it's no one's business if I would have been.  I was enjoying the late-summer breeze and watching my kids, along with a group of 8-10 year old boys, play while enjoying the sunshine on my legs.

The helicopter parents were abound.  Heck, there was even a helicopter grandpa there.  I was quite astonished at his energy level!  It even wore his grandson out, as he finally asked, "Can we not play the monster game anymore, grandpa? I want to climb on the ladder."  That made me chuckle.

While I was sitting on the bench observing, I felt the eyes of a couple heli-moms on me.  I'm sure they were aghast at my level of laziness and my utter disregard for what my boys were doing.  I was probably disgusting them with my self-centered presence at the park that morning.

But a few things happened Thursday morning at Vickie Powers Park.

Jameson - who has forever been quite un-graceful and hesitant to do anything daring - climbed up the steps of the jungle-gym, and proceeded to go right down the slide all by himself. Then, beaming with pride, he did it again.  After the small slide became super lame, he moved on to the bigger slides.

A few minutes later, he started hopping across the tires that are half-buried in the ground, whereas he wouldn't even get up on them the previous times we'd been to that park.

He also climbed up onto a ride-on horse toy, with no help from me, though he'd requested it - something else he's never done on his own before.

Hendrix saw another boy standing on top of one of those tubes designed to crawl through.  He asked me how to get up on top of it, and I answered that I wasn't sure, but I knew he could figure it out.  And you know what?

He did.

He got frustrated a few times, and he failed a few times.  But the other young boy ended up giving him a few pointers, and the next thing I knew, Hendrix was King of the Playground Jungle and he had figured it out without my help.

Again - everyone parents differently, but letting kids figure things out themselves really does them quite a bit of good.  And from the heli-grandpa paragraph above, sometimes I think they really do want adults to butt out and let them be kids. :)


  1. Stephanie - I love your attitude and writing style. We share similar philosophy on raising kids. I think the bulldozer parents - plowing the smoothest path for their kids - are doing our society and their children a great disservice.

    I have created a YouTube channel that focuses on teaching life lessons and the first episode is called Adventure Education. I think you'll really like it.

    Please share it with your community and let me know what your thoughts are - I hope to create the video version of what you'e done here!

  2. Sounds great, I'll be sure to check it out. Thank you!