The warming weather has thawed an innate desire within my oldest girls: playing outside.
Now when we get home from a morning spent at the doctor or at church, they immediately run to the little playhouse in our neighbor’s driveway. But I have to drag them away crying and screaming because it’s nap time.
On Friday we went to Ferguson’s January-Wabash Park for the first time this year. At first I thought it would be like our previous park outing the week before, in which they spent most of the time swinging and very little on the playground. The girls probably swung for 20 minutes before they (read: Jadzia) decided to ride the pretend horses.
Then Jadzia surprised me. She wanted to go on the merry-go-round, despite remembering her really bad fall the first time she tried a merry-go-round last year. Ludi wanted to do it, too. Thankfully there weren’t any other kids around yet, so I could push them without going too fast.
From there it was time to hit the actual playset. Jadzia began going down some slides by herself. Ludi took a bit of warming up, but she let me help her down some slides, too. I looked up and saw Jadzia climbing a ladder. Unbelievable. Later, she was walking carefully across a horizontal ladder to get from one platform to another. She did that several times. Still later, Jadzia ascended a chain-ladder that moves as you climb it. All by herself. Ludi followed her, and though I had to help her with her footing, she managed to pull herself up with her own strength.
When we got home from the park, again the girls ran to the neighbor’s driveway. I went to grab Ludi as Jadzia got onto her big wheel tricycle. I watched, amazed, as she began hurtling down the driveway with her feet off the ground. She never rides it feet-up. Unfortunately, she still doesn’t steer very well, and she sort of flipped over before I could catch her. She ended up slightly scratching her face and crying.
Ludi’s daring I could understand, as she has always been a climber. But Jadzia has always been so trepidatious about these things. What a difference one winter makes!