The family that plays together…
Some people see a picture of a family like this and have warm fuzzies. I may have had these thoughts before having kids, but here’s what this image represents to me at this point in my life:
- Packing lunches, extra clothes and all sorts of toys
- A long drive
- Muddy clothes
- Replacement clothing costs
- Near drownings
- Sibling sabotage in the ocean
- Muddy car ride home
- Buying some kind of treat on the way home
- Muddy house
- Over-tired, cranky kids
I thought about this the other day when I looked out my back window and saw a woman playing with kids in my neighbor’s backyard. They played for hours on the trampoline, on the playhouse and in the yard. The next day I looked out my window and saw her playing with the kids again. I was surprised to see that she spent another 2 hours outside playing. On the third day I looked out and nearly fell over when I saw everyone playing outside for a third day in a row. I had my wife inspect the situation and asked her if this woman was the kids’ mother. She replied that it was not their mother.
“Oh, this makes much more sense,” I said. “It must be a babysitter while the parents are on vacation. No one plays with their kids that much.” My wife and I had a rare moment of agreement and had the kids watch a little more television while we went back to work.
Darn, I need to do better.