Simple As That: Come on, get a little muddy!

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“The world is mud-luscious and puddle-wonderful.”  — e.e. cummings

So that we may coax our little bed of sweet potato vines and delicate lavender plants through the scorching July days, my girls and I head out early each morning to soak everything with water.  Each of them are fairly adept with the garden hose, so I’ve been allowing them the independence to saturate that bed on their own while I dead-head and tend to what is left of our spring flowers.

Last week, the hose lingered a little too long in one corner of the vine bed and before I knew it, the girls had created one glorious mud puddle.  No plants were in danger of harm, so I let them splash and dig and experience the mud for a bit.  I even remembered to grab my camera so that I could capture the glory of it all.  As I circled them snapping off shots, my oldest daughter invited me to, “Come on, Mom!  Get muddy with us!”

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At first I resisted – it was just so terribly, well, dirty.

But then I reconsidered.  When was the last time I had stomped in some mud?  Didn’t the cool mud look awfully inviting?  Sure, it was messy, but nothing a little spray down with the garden hose couldn’t remedy.  So I dug in my toes and agreed with my daughters.  That squishy, mooshy, globby, ooky mud was delightful.

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Simply delightful.

When was the last time you allowed yourself the freedom to get a little muddy?

(By the way, speaking of simple delights, I wanted to make you aware that every Monday, FishMama of Life as Mom is hosting Camp Wannalaffalotta where she shares tons of inspiration for summer fun!  And if you prefer making messes in the kitchen instead of out in the garden, you won’t want to miss the Life as Mom Birthday Cake Round-Up this Thursday!)

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Teaching from Rest: A Homeschooler's Guide to Unshakable Peace

Comments

  1. I’m a total mud resister myself. The boys get in and get dirty, but I just can’t bring myself to do it (unless I’m in the garden). I’m seriously going to have to swallow the lump and join in some mud play with them. :)

  2. Alright, I just booted mine out for some mud therapy. But, um, the baby needs me to stay inside…

    Lora Lynn @ Vitafamiliae’s last blog post..Happily, No One Ran With Scissors Or Operated Heavy Machinery

  3. When I taught preschool years ago, my co-teacher and I got a lot of angry frowns one afternoon when parents came to collect their mud-covered children. We had a lot of apologizing to do, but it was worth every second watching those kids delight in that mud!

    Kelly Feinberg’s last blog post..Sort of Marbled Paper

  4. I am really trying to be a mom that likes to get muddy. Even as a kid I was not one that was in the mud, sand, etc. I am learning that getting in the mud with my kids makes them appreciate nature and the beauty that surrounds them a lot more than admiring it from inside. We are all learning to appreciate the outdoors and a really good rainstorm.

    Amy’s last blog post..Trusting in Him

    • @Amy, come to think of it, I was not a big fan of getting dirty as a child, either. You make a great point though about children learning more about nature though hands-on experience. Younger children are such concrete learners – nothing stimulates learning more for them than information gathered through the senses.

      Megan’s last blog post..Simple As That: Come on, get a little muddy!

  5. This post just reminds me of how much we mess up in the life of Mom’s. I remember when I would make mud pies, jump in the mud and run in the rain. Some of my favorite memories! My Mom didn’t throw a fit or even try to stop me! I do slack on letting go when it comes to that. I think some change is needed!! Thanks Megan!

    Chele’s last blog post..Menu Planning Returns!

    • @Chele, it’s funny how being on this side of parenting is such a revelation, isn’t it?

      And for the moms who are generally resistant to this kind of play, there’s nothing wrong with a little prep work before hand to make it less stressful and more fun: make sure you have a place and means to rinse close by, gather a stack of towels, designate a place for muddy shoes and clothes . . . all of these things can ease your mind and let you surrender to the fun of it all!

      Megan’s last blog post..Simple As That: Come on, get a little muddy!

  6. I’m usually with Lora Lynn (above). But, I have 3 boys (+1 girl) so I occasionally get into some messy stuff. When I’m in my right mind, I realize that my connection with our children is stronger when I join in the fun rather than when I watch from the sidelines.

    Stacie’s last blog post..4 Links To Simplify Your Life

    • @Stacie, I have to remind myself of this so often – that joining in the fun (whatever it is!) does build those connections and allows children to see the FUN side of mom and dad. I think that was one of the best parts of the muddy morning for my girls – getting to see me do something I usually say “no thank you” to!

      Megan’s last blog post..Simple As That: Come on, get a little muddy!

  7. Thanks for the reminder to get in and get dirty with the kids. It’s so easy for me to stay behind the camera sometimes. I find that when I do occasionally leave the camera at home it can be refreshing and I engage more with them. Also, thanks for the link to my blog on Friday!

    Erin’s last blog post..Buttercup Bags

    • @Erin, putting the camera away and really getting involved in what my girls are doing is such a challenge for me. I find them to be so photographically inspiring! But I want their memories to include me playing WITH them sometimes – not just capturing their play on camera. Always looking for the balance there.

      Megan’s last blog post..Simple As That: Come on, get a little muddy!

  8. Yes, this is an area I have to be intentional about. The idea of purposefully creating mess just doesn’t come naturally to me! But in the right moment, like you had, it is SO fun!

    Jamie

    steadymom’s last blog post..Sponsor Giveaway :: Love and Tea Company

    • @steadymom, it’s funny – I’m generally not mess-opposed. I don’t mind a great paint mess or cooking mess. But there’s something about mud that makes me want to say “Oh, let’s don’t!” Once I started playing in it, though, I remembered exactly why kids are so drawn to it!

      Megan’s last blog post..Simple As That: Come on, get a little muddy!

  9. We are mud people. I would go to my grandmas with my mom to work on her garden they would put me in between them with a shovel and my own watering can and I would work up a good muddy mess. Now when I get muddy with my kids it brings back those memories of how much fun we had and I can tell my kids stories about their great grandma and grandma and how they loved the mud too.

    Rana’s last blog post..Menu Plan Monday

  10. i LOVE the pictures. so good. makes me want to get muddy myself. and i never think that.

    laura @ peacoat’s last blog post..the belly shot

  11. I’m totally impressed by how you were able to let go. My first thought was, what would I wear? What would she wear? Oh no, more laundry! How bad is that! But you’re right. I’m jealous of your pictures, and I’m willing to bet that your daughters will never forget that moment (and more to come!) I think I’ll wait until mine is old enough to remember the day that mommy got all muddy ;)

    • @turnitupmom, now, for the purposes of full disclosure here, I have to emphasize this was before we were dressed for the day. The girls were just in jammies and I was in outdoor work gear – nothing I would worry about getting permanently ruined! And everything went straight into the washer, too!

      Megan’s last blog post..Simple As That: Come on, get a little muddy!

  12. I little mud never hurt anyone! I haven’t had to water our garden once, I guess that’s one benefit of lots of rain!

    renee @ FIMBY’s last blog post..Setting a summer (or anytime really) schedule

  13. Well, I just LOVED this! I think that is awesome that you allowed you kids AND you to enjoy that mud. Thank you for the reminder…a water hose will wash all dirt away and a broom will handle what ends up in the house. Thanks =)

    Erika’s last blog post..Learning to share…

  14. Great post! We have a motto for playing outside – as dirty as you want to be. My 3 year old is often heard saying just that “I’m as dirty as I want to be.” And is she ever! I don’t stress about mud and dirt when we are in the garden. It’s fun to be messy and muddy. Our other daily motto is “It’s all washable.”

    Off to scrub the dirt out from under my nails…

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