I think it’s fair to say April is living up to its name with the showers. Today we even had a little flurry of large snowflakes! But putting that aside (and glossing over getting soaked on our walk back from town yesterday), we have had some lovely weather this week. And with the garden springing into life, delighting us with colourful primroses, daffodils, bluebells and lovely blossom, that’s where you’ll find us now most afternoons.
It has been quite an adjustment getting used to the lack of nap time – for both me and Rosalie – she still gets very tired in the afternoon which makes tempers frayed, but being in the garden seems to really help us both. We have an average sized garden for an estate house – we’re on the corner and have walls on all sides, making it a lovely safe space for Rosalie to play, and we aren’t really overlooked which I like.
Last year we made Rosalie a sand and water table as well as a little play area for it to go in with logs to play on. It’s been a lot of fun so far this spring, making sand cakes, building sand castles, and drawing patterns in the sand. We had to put warm water in the water table (it’s not quite warm enough to stick with cold) and I thought I’d add a splash of bubbles so she could pretend to wash up – that amused her for a good while! Until she started taking her boots and socks off and asking for me to give her a wash… I didn’t indulge her on that one!
The sunshine has meant that we were able to eat our lunch outside several days this week – fabulous on two counts – one because, well, who doesn’t love a picnic lunch? And two, the birds clear up the crumbs so I don’t have to!
One of the best things about having a garden is that it provides wonderful opportunities for imaginary play. I find that when we are playing indoors Rosalie is a lot more clingy and craves more direct attention; but in the garden she explores by herself and is generally more happy to do her own thing, at least for a short while.
She loves to collect things and spent a happy hour last week collecting flowers to put into her little bucket to make ‘fairy soup’. She was running backwards and forwards between the flower borders and her bucket of water, excitedly dropping the petals in and giving it a stir with a stick she found. Later in the day, and the following day, she was asking to check on her soup and to see if the fairies had liked it. So lovely.
It was so sunny this week, that we even decided to make ice lollies! They got Rosalie’s seal of approval, and mine. I think daddy was rather jealous that we were relaxing in the sunshine eating ice lollies whilst he was hard at work in the office.
I am so grateful for the spring sunshine giving us our garden play space back, expanding our range of fun activities at a time when we need it the most.