Turn off the screens—the television, the computer, the video games. Take time from work, from chores, from the day-to-day tasks that keep us busy. Adults and children, take it outside. Each week I will challenge you to see and hear new things—to hunt the woods for wildflowers, to find shapes in nature, to sit by the waterside and listen for unique sounds. So much to experience out in the world!
Last week we had 5 days of rain. Summer rain that makes everything shiny and green, green, green. During those rainy days, images of puddle jumpers and umbrellas ran through my mind. Boots in yellow, pink, green, flowered, rocket-shipped, shaped like frogs, butterflies, and ladybugs. So many designs, so many feet, so many ways to walk in the rain.
Umbrellas are ingenious inventions—portable shelters to be taken anywhere, their designs and colors even more diverse than those of rain boots. Umbrellas provide bright, illuminated spots in the darkest gray day of rain. The sound of rain just overhead can vary from a soft pitter patter to a deafening clatter.
Every morning I put my puddle jumpers on to walk through the dewy grass on my way to the chicken coops and every morning I’m glad I own them. On rainy days I put them on and tramp through puddles without a care. An umbrella makes it possible to be outdoors comfortably on rainy days— a little protective roof to shelter one from the most torrential downpour. When I walk in the rain I think about a description in Tom Robbins’s book Another Roadside Attraction. Robbins describes Amanda walking in the rainy climate of Seattle, saying that she walked with her face turned toward the sky to greet the rain. That’s not a direct quote, rather how I remember it and how I try to be in the rain. For inspiration, watch Gene Kelly dance in the movie Singing In The Rain. (See video below) He knows how to have fun in the rain!
So don your puddle jumpers, grab some umbrellas and take a walk in the rain. Your kids will love it! Talk about the sound of the rain on the umbrella and on the ground. Walk near water and watch the raindrops hit the surface. Sing, dance, walk, play, get wet, get dirty, enjoy the rain, the puddles, the shiny green world, and the time outside with your children.