Winter is not, to be totally honest, my very favourite time of the year. Outside play, such a staple of our lives September - April, is restricted. Parts of my garden, unable to cope with the combined onslaught of dogs and weather, turn into quagmires of mess. We all get colds, naturally.
Winter does have its compensations, of course. Warming hearty food, lots of baking, bookended by birthdays (the middle girl in May, the big girl in August), it tends to be a convivial time for us, with lots of reading and crafting and, yes, catching up on movies and TV (which are barely watched in the warmer months).
The two little girls have also discovered that being outside in the winter has its pleasures ...
when you can play joyously, creatively, and messily with MUD!
This mudcake-creating game kept them happy and busy for an hour one cold but sunny winter morning this week, which followed a very wet night (hence many puddles and much mud!) The 5-year-old narrated the process with many a Masterchef-inspired flourish, while the 17-month-old happily carried spades of dirt over to the puddle to mix up more batter. Even the old dog got into the act ... I'm not sure entirely to his delight, but he was a good sport about it!
Best of all, this muddy play was followed by a late morning bubble bath, an unexpected bonus for them both. The simple things are so much fun for kids, I think.