family, Home, Island Life, memories

Fresh air . . .

My mother was a great believer in fresh air.

In fact all the mothers of my neighbourhood were. Children rarely played indoors.

In the spring we headed out in our rain jackets and rubber boots to float our stick “boats” down the ditches swirling with melting snow and rushing streams. We’d gather pussywillows and mayflowers and bring them home so my mother could arrange them in the brown pottery jug that always held nature’s latest gifts.

In the summer we ran around in the backyards and fields of our little town until the stars were shining in the black sky and our mothers were heard calling from the back porches. “Time to come in!”

In the fall we dropped our schoolbags at the door after school, grabbed a cookie and ran outside to play  frozen tag, hide and seek, or Annie Over.

In the winter we bundled up in our jackets, snow pants, mitts, hats and scarfs and dragged our sleds up to the hill behind the high school. I can still hear the shouts and laughter ringing in the frosty air. And when I finally trudged home, half-frozen and tired, my mother would smile at me and say “What rosy cheeks!”

Fresh air was considered healthy – a tonic – good for what ails you – a lift for the spirit.

I practiced the same methods with my children. They played outside every day. Prince Edward Island is still a safe place to raise children. I know it isn’t always possible in some places to allow children to play out on their own – which feels so sad to me. I think it’s a great loss to childhood happiness and freedom.

But, if your children can’t go out on their own you can always go out with them.

A daily dose of fresh air is good advice for grown ups too.

and for pups!

Hope you can  get your fresh air today!


8 thoughts on “Fresh air . . .

  1. Kathie, we should have been neighbors! We would have had such fun. My mom was just like yours, and we loved being outside– in any weather! We did the same things and played the same games you mentioned, too. I’m smiling and feeling nostalgic… 🙂 My kids were outside kids, too, because I thought it was a healthy way to grow up, and they loved it!Susan


  2. Lovely photos! I love that my kids can run and play here. Sometimes I have to push them out the door though which I find terribly frustrating. They always have a good time once they are there! 🙂


  3. oh that puppy couldn’t agree with you more. I also am a big fan of fresh air and when my grands start to come for regular days in the week .. .we’ll be taking your advice. . .rain or shine. . they’ll have boots and rain jackets.


  4. I so agree! My mom was the same way. I remember doing way more things outside. In my dayhome, parents are always instructed to make sure that there is weather appropriate clothing bought each day because unless it’s really bad weather we will go outside at some point in each day. I find it makes for much happier kids. They get to run off some of all that energy that they have built up. I find they get into so much more naughty and crazy kinds of behavior when all that energy is pent up indoors and looking for a release.


  5. What beautiful fall photos. Growing up I can’t remember playing inside much at all. We were always out and about and I even lived in a less then friendly neighborhood! When we moved to Washington we had to learn how to play in the rain and in bad weather something that we had very little of in Southern California. I love that my kids got a taste of So. Cal. and then got to live in a big outdoor area in the Northwest with all the seasons and weather! Makes for hardiness!! Willow and I haven’t been able to walk the last couple days because it has been oppressively hot and dry with winds really kicking up. (Temps in the 90’s) I am longing for some real fall weather.


  6. Working in an office all day, little breaks to grab some fresh air is vital! I am going to go later today to do just that – grab some vital fresh air!Love the puppy shot – looks joyful!


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