Friday, 29 August 2014

Adventures with frogs. Chapter six: A whole new world

Over the days that followed the death of the tadpoles we bought oxygenating plants and put them in the bath tub. We went up the Yeti Hill and filled a bottle with pond water and then brought that back to the bath tub. And then, as if by magic, the bath tub transformed into something completely different. It changed into an incredible mini eco system, an entire whole new world of wonder. All manner of creatures moved and wriggled in there; snails, water beetles, larvae. The tadpoles thrived, grew back legs and front legs and soon enough where mini frogs. My oldest son spoke about the tadpoles who died. My youngest began to talk about Granddad’s cat who had died the year before. I accepted that my children were going to keep on getting bigger.

One by one the froglets became frogs and one by one they hopped out of the bath tub pond and into vastness of our garden. Summer rolled on, amazing creatures thrived in the pond.  My oldest declared the pond life was even more fascinating than the frogs. Though when we saw the frogs, every so often hopping in the wilder parts of the garden, the lads were excited and animated about how big they'd grown and how far they could hop. 

It was a fun summer. We played, explored and made the pond, which was and is an incredible hobby. Our pond is not as big as the one in this CBeebies clip but the wonder and fascination it evokes is just as big and bold.

It is a curious thing, that much is made of how important listening and engaging with children is for their future development. But what is often over looked is that playing and exporing with children is just as important for the development of adults. Far from draining my creativity the time with my children gives it a big boost. Over the summer, energised by my children, I got a heap of work done. I performed shows, devised workshops, wrote new articles including Social Justice & Scottish Independence  and Fairy Tales for Adults, as well as beginning the rewrite of my draft bog novel Marcus Marcus and the Hurting Heart.

Today my youngest started his first ever day at school. He looked so proud in his school uniform and his big brother was very pleased that his little brother was joining him. I was a little emotional, but that's good too. Everything changes. Summer is done for this year and Autumn is tapping raindrops at the window. As we got the boys ready for school, they chatted about the rain, and how the frogs and the pond and the grass would love it. 

Autumn is here. Now it is time for new adventures, with water proof boots and woolly jumpers and long walks and talks in the darkening evenings. No doubt the frogs will be having new adventures too

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 Here is another article in you might enjoy: The power of hobbies 

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