I have to digress for a moment to the fact that I am not a perfect mom. No matter how hard I try, sometimes I end up giving in to letting the kids do something that I otherwise wouldn't. Before you think that I am totally nuts, let me explain the photos below, before I receive that much deserved bad mommy of the year award.
We were on a nature hike with friends. The kids enjoy getting together weekly with their buddies, as do I, with the 2 other mom friends that I have made. On this particular day, the kids had fun climbing trees, and throwing sticks and rocks into the little creek at the nature center that is within 20 miles from our home.
It was one of our first Spring days of 2009, and it was fairly warm. At the end of our play date, the kids ran to this outdoor stage, in which they love to jump off of, and into the grass below. This time, the area was flooded. One of the children (can't remember which one, or whether it was one of mine or not) jumped into the big puddle. Soon after the others started jumping in. Soon they were covered in mud and muck. Now, before you judge, how many of you secretly wished that your mom or dad would have let you jump in mud puddles too your hearts delight, when you were a kid? I know I would have, loved it! So in the end, I said to myself, and my friend who stood beside me, why not? What will it hurt? The kids played in the muddy water for quite some time, until we absolutely had to go. They had the time of their lives, and a memory that will stay with them forever. Luckily, I had blankets in the back of the van in which to strip them down to their underwear in the parking lot, and cover their muddy bodies up with blankets for the trip home. My only fear was being stopped for a traffic violation. I mean, what if? I thought about it all the way home. Can you imagine how I would explain two half naked children with faces covered in mud, buckled in the back seats of our van? The thought made me laugh all the way home. As I laughed (out loud) at the prospect, my thoughts turned to a more serious matter of how I was going to get them into the house and into the bath, without them touching everything. My plan worked well. I first ran into the house and started the bath water with bubbles, and then grabbed a garbage bag on the way out to the van. I bagged up all the muddy clothes and shoes, and then led the first child into the bath, and then the 2nd child. I then started the washing machine, and dumped the entire contents of the garbage bag into the wash. Everything came clean, including their little joy filled bodies. Now all I have left are the photos. What a treasure that day was.