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!