Good Old Fashioned Play


Kai’s interest in birds has blossomed into a deep fascination, with not only birds but nature in general. As a result we tend to go out more to woodland areas and parks.

We have found a beautiful wildlife haven very close to where we live, and we go there often. In Wanstead Park, a little off the beaten track, there is a stream which Kai loves to paddle in–it’s absolutely idyllic.

On most visits we share the stream with a little egret,

picture of a small white heron

Our little friend

and on very special days a kingfisher will fly by. We were extremely shocked when we saw the kingfisher for the first time; it’s not a bird you expect to see in the heart of London. But others have also reported seeing this special bird in the park, so I guess we just got lucky.

It’s really satisfying to watch Kai playing in the stream with complete abandon. This is a place where he’s free: no one telling him what to do. This is his space.

He gets to explore and splash to his heart’s content. But rarely does he fail to spot a bird or other creature that crosses his path: “Look mummy, a great tit.” Or “I think I’ve seen a poppet,” he’ll say when he finds something new.

Here in this natural place of natural beauty I become a “yes” mummy: it’s ok to walk to in the stream without your shoes. (Perhaps crocs would be a good idea next time, but today it’s ok.) It’s ok that you’ve fallen in and are now soaked through, I’ve brought spares. ( I remembered from the last time when we weren’t so prepared.)

I hope that these experiences remain with him, always.

photo credit( Egret) : Manibabu Krishnan


About SJ

A mother, writer and free-spirited home-educator with a passion for challenging the norm.
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