I recently spent five weeks with my kids in my childhood home. The little one got to spend a lot of time under the same trees where we celebrated birthday parties and Sunday lunches. My son, who turned two right before going to Spain, got to experience a lot of the same things I enjoyed as a child in that very house. It was wonderful for all of us.
My childhood wasn’t picture perfect. My mother did not spend hours on Pinterest, and she didn’t spend any time finding just the perfect theme for my birthday parties. My dad did not coach any sports teams, and we never went to father-daughter dances. However, I have so many beautiful memories of living in that house. Simple, fun activities that required little or no planning, and that any child would be lucky to experience.
Most of us can gather at least a couple of these childhood activities, so bring them out of your memories and make them real for your kids. While planned play dates, dances and sports are wonderful, your childhood favorites will be unique to you, and sharing them with your kids will add to the family culture you are weaving every day. Just like you do now, your children will cherish these experiences as adults.
Enjoy your childhood again, this time with your children. This is what we did:
– My son picked Japanese loquats, from the tree in my dad’s backyard, and ate them still warm from being under the hot sun
– He learned to gather pine nuts, then use a rock to smash them open and eat them
– We went to my favorite pastry shop, the same one where my parents took my sister and me on special occasions, and indulged on Spanish sweets
– Although we had a pool we could go to, we turned on the sprinkler and ran through the water on a very hot day
– We took a walk around the city where I grew up
What are some of the experiences you remember doing as a child? Are you introducing them to your children?