October 8, 2016

Making the most of a rainy day

I've heard recently that it's important to have experiences and make memories. Certainly my memories from childhood that stand out were the ones where my family went somewhere interesting or did something out of the ordinary.

Going anywhere with my family is a challenge. We have two small children who communicate in sweet giggles and wild tantrums. But we've resolved that new experiences are worth the work.

I love the Rennasaince festival which is held in September and October where I live. Figuring it was worth a shot, I looked at my calendar and compared it to the weather forecast. Three day weekend, Saturday had a 65% chance of rain. Perfect.

I'd rather deal with rain than crowds, and the kids seemed unphased by the wet weather. We got to see cheesy shows, eat all kinds of food on a stick, and browse interesting items for sale made by local artists. There was even a playground with a pirate ship. My son's favorite part was the booth selling painted gourds, my daughter fell in love with a little fairy ornament, my husband got his enormous turkey leg, and I got to browse all kinds of neat stuff. Yes, we got soaked to the bones and had a hard time getting the stroller through all the mud, but we made a memory.

As we walked back to the car, soaked and tired, a woman yelled to get our attention. "Sir, even though you have wee little ones, they'll remember times like this. I've been going to this faire since I was a small child. Children need experiences. You're doing a great job."

My heart warmed at the compliment. In the middle of the parenting trenches, it's hard to see the fruits of my labor. I hope the kids will remember this day: the day we all intentionally went to the Ren Faire during bad weather.

I strongly believe that having adventures not only helps one grow as a person, but also improves creative endeavors. Living fully has made me write more authentic feeling scenes. I'll keep wracking up more and more experiences, but not just for myeself. I'm also doing this for the kids. One day, they'll be able to pull on their memories of our family adventures for inspiration. And when they do, I'll be excited to see what they come up with.

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