"It's almost 40 degrees already," I heard my son say to his sister. "No way will we stay inside."
I got up, fixed my coffee, and set the kids up with their math assignments. As soon as they were finished, we headed to a park in the neighborhood.
On our walk to the park and on our walk through the park, seeing early signs of spring, the kids talked about memories of past spring times.
By now, they know what flowers will be the first to bloom, and they looked for them today and predicted what flowers will appear next. We noticed the robins are starting to arrive, but the mockingbirds aren't here yet. We heard a blue jay hollering at someone and saw the resident woodchuck scurry down his (her?) burrow.
When we sat on the park's lawn to work on our drawings, my daughter said, "Remember when we used to play here?"
I suppressed a laugh because it wasn't that long ago that the kids played on the lawn. In fact, they played on the lawn today! But I knew what she meant. The kids have been playing on that lawn since they were babies.
As they kids reminisced like a pair of old grandparents, it occurred to me for the first time that the habit of being outside together prolongs that wonder-filled time of childhood. Time out doors seems to last longer than regular time - it lasts longer in the moment, and it lasts for a lifetime in memories.
You are told a lot about your education, but some beautiful, sacred memory, preserved since childhood, is perhaps the best education of all. Fyodor Dostoevski