There was a time when I was rarely inside during the day. My little ones wanted to be outside all the time. Playing in the sandbox. Swinging on the swings. Running around. Playing ball. Riding bikes. You name it and we were outside doing it. Don’t get me wrong I love the fresh air, but there were days when I wanted to stay indoors. But, my kids would pester and fuss until we trooped outside. We don’t have a fenced in yard, so letting them play outside alone was not an option.
We were outside all the time until we weren’t outside much at all. As with any change in family routine, the process was gradual. It didn’t happen in one day or in one week, but over the course of a couple of years I noticed a change in our going outside habits. My teen who was probably 9/10 at the time preferred to stay inside doing her own thing. She tired of playing outside after a few minutes. She was too hot…too cold…too bored. She would play outside a little with her younger brother who was a toddler back then, but drift in to the house to listen to her ipod or read a book. My next oldest was very willing to play outside with her brother until she was about the same age. Soon, my youngest was the lone member of the family with any desire to play outside.
I would sit and wonder why no one wanted to play outside. We have a fun house. The outside of our house is fun. Packed with swingset, sandbox, two soccer goals, basketball net, hammock, bikes, and other riding toys. What I discovered is that no amount of toys can persuade a teen or a tween to turn off the electronic device, put down the book, wake up from a nap.
I heard about Worldwide Day of Play recently. Did you know about this day? I missed it and it was in my hometown. It was September 24. Hosted by Nick in Washington, D.C. on 9/24, Worldwide Day of Play was sponsored by one of my favorite brands for kids and tweens…Webkinz. Other partners included other organizations near and dear to me…NFL Play 60, the PTA, Let’s Move, and the National Park Service.
I wonder where next year’s Worldwide Day of Play will be held? This day is the centerpiece of Nickelodeon’s The Big Help, a program to empower kids and families to make healthy lifestyle choices every day. In addition to the sponsors and partners listed above, Clorox 2® is a proud sponsor of Nickelodeon’s 8th Annual Worldwide Day of Play. So take the Clorox2® Play 2Day pledge to play outside
! Or you can go here… http://clorox2play2day.com.
Don’t forget to go outside after you visit the site!
And in other news…I have a winner for the Blue Bunny giveaway. Congrats to Tracy!
I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Clorox2® blogging program, for a gift card worth $40. For more information on how you can participate, click here.