spring fun, pink eye, and why we don’t want much for Aspen’s birthday

 

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Spring is upon us, and I for one, am thrilled! Spring is my favorite season for many reasons. One being, it’s mine and Aspen’s birthday season! Two, the weather is absolutely perfect; and three, it’s gardening season!

This week has been rough for us. So, so rough. Aspen is teething, has a cold, AND had pink eyes in both eyes. Three sleepless nights, and five incredibly difficult and clingy days nearly made me lose my mind. We were home bound from the pink eye for a few days, which really puts a damper on my mood because I am a busy body. I love being on the move and exploring and doing a million and one things throughout the day. But I have a feeling God was like, “hey girl, you obviously wont slow down on your own, so here’s a little bit of pink eye to FORCE you to learn how to relax.”

Most people know that I am not huge on Aspen watching loads of TV. She is only eleven months old anyway, and I just feel like there is so much more we can do to entertain ourselves and let our childrens immagination grow than sitting in front of a screen all day. But it’s hard to stay home three days in a row without wanting to watch all three seasons of Super Why just to keep her quiet for a few hours. But as tempting as it was, I opted out (most of the time). Instead, we gardened, colored, played in our yard, read dozens of books, and visited quiet beaches.

Now she is feeling much better, and we are back to our crazy schedule of constantly moving and having fun. But during this home bound period, as short lived as it was, it reminded me how great minimalism is for children. We have a few house toys she plays with throughout our indoor time, but more often than not, I want her to explore her outdoor surroundings and continue to grow her gross and fine motor skills. She’s about to turn one year old in a few weeks, and I keep thinking of what we want as gifts. And to be completely honest, we don’t really need or want anything. However, to appease those who insist on gifting, we have made a small list of things we think would benefit her experiences, but beyond these few items I feel it is a waste of time, money, and room in our small minimalistic home. Besides, there are dozens of studies out there saying that too many toys actually overwhelms a child and hinders their immagination and creativity. Instead, we’d prefer:

  1. A wagon- for our walks around the neighborhood when she wants to collect all the flowers and pine cones we cross paths with.
  2. books- Aspen loves nothing more than story time. I’m serious, her favorite is Brown Bear Brown Bear. I read it fifteen times in one day because she insisted. And I’m a firm believer that there’s no such thing as too many books.
  3. An evolving tricycle- These look so fun! And it grows with them, so it’ll last a while.
  4. craft box- As she gets older she finds more and more interest in creating. I think a small craft box where we can store crayons, paper, paint, yarn, etc. would benefit her creativity and indoor time for quite a while.
  5. Water table- These are perfect for the hot summer days ahead of us, and are great for sensory play!

At the end of the day, we want to be intentional parents. To us, teaching Aspen that less is sometimes more is a great lesson about life. I’m sure there will be a ton of disagreements on how we parent our child, but that just comes with parenthood during the age of social media. But please, know that we are diliberately not making a big list for a reason. And respecting mom and dad’s wishes are always appreciated.

So, outside of discussing our minimalistic birthday wishes, we are anticipating a beautiful few weeks of spring-time fun before Scott leaves for deployment. What’s your favorite thing to do in the Spring?

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