The children and I have been going to a park on Fridays for sports day and art. Some bring baseballs and bats, others bring a kick ball or football, and we just play. It is neat to see the children playing at the park because their main goal is to have fun, and enjoy their friends.
There was a time when sports were played in the neighborhood just for the fun or love of the game. Picture this, the kids take two trash cans and set them up across from each other, those were the goal (nets), the kids would get some sticks or brooms and use a tennis ball or small ball to play-- Yes, you guessed it, street hockey! No expensive equipment needed!
Nowadays sports have become so competitive, expensive, and all about making it big. The goal seems to be to become famous and make millions, oh and yes, it's a bonus if you love the sport that you play.
I remember as a child playing hide and seek, kick the can, dodgeball, freeze tag, tag, jump rope, double-dutch, chineses jump rope, ride skateboard, bike, or tricycle. It was great to climb trees, run through the pineapple fields in PR, pick mangoes off the tree for a quick snack, build sand castles at the beach, or build a house with sheets on your bunk bed. On rainy days board games were a blast. Playing monopoly or parchesi for hours. Playing card games like war, matching, hearts, rummi, or gin-rummi. And I hate to admit, but hey I was a girl, I played with dolls or barbies. I wasn't as impacted in those days (way back in the 70's) with feminism as some women are now. We weren't afraid to become mothers, and our mothers weren't concerned about us getting an eating disorder because of playing with barbie dolls. We were just having fun without the distraction of television or video games. Obesity was rare, even being overweight was uncommon.
Wouldn't it be nice to go back to the simple days of working and playing together, spending true quality time together, not in front of the television, but with each other. Listening to each other and really hearing each other as we do the dishes or fold laundry together. Our children will surprise us with what they are able to do and learn and what they all ready know. We are so busy in our lives that we hardly have time to talk to our children.
Yes we have work to do, but can't we spare one night a week, order a pizza or make a simple meal, turn off the t.v. and video games, and really spend time together. Teach your children to play together even if they aren't in the same age group. Our older children will learn patience and the younger ones will learn to respect their older siblings and look up to them. We will learn more about each other and appreciate each others gifts and limitations.
Movie night is fun too, don't get me wrong! But it's more fun if you watch sparingly and watch together.