Some days, you just get up and look out the window, and it’s wet.
Your mood is flattened in an instant.
But you don’t have to feel flat. After all, it may be raining, but why is it a miserable day? Why should the weather dictate to you how you feel?
It’s not a miserable day.
It’s just a wet day.
This happened to us one particularly dreary bank holiday.
Being the eternal optimist that I am, I refused to be stuck at home with the kids – with them winding me up to pinging point – while hubby was stuck at work.
We love the outdoors, so I had a little peek at the weather forecast, and saw it wasn’t due to rain until the afternoon. I rounded up the sheep (no, really – sometimes it feels like I have a whole herd. Yet, there are only two of them and they aren’t very big), we grabbed their scooters and the crusts of yesterday’s bread, and pootled off to one of my favourite lakes; Loughton Lodge Lake in North Milton Keynes.
This one is not a particularly big lake, but big enough for a leisurely stroll, and there is a separate path towards Loughton village, and also Wymbush if you want to explore a little further afield. My favourite part about this lake is the play apparatus dotted around the way, so the kids (my sister and I loved doing this as children – and she still does, but that’s another story), can practice their balancing, climbing, pull-ups and acrobatic swings on the bars.
Of course, with it being a lake, there is plenty of viewing opportunity for wildlife enthusiasts, and what child doesn’t love feeding the ducks? If you’re a property fanatic you can admire/salivate over the grand houses overlooking the lake and wonder what it’s like to live with such an amazing view. Perhaps if you had a little more time, you might visit the local Chinese restaurant for a spot of lunch (Kam Tong in Great Holm), which also overlooks the lake.
Littlest-legs struggled with her scooter, and I ended up carrying it – and the bread, and then later her – but we managed the whole lake. We were only out for an hour, and the girls got to feed the ducks, see some goslings and spy a nesting swan in the reeds before it started to rain, but we had fun. And once we were back home and had some lunch, they were pleasantly quiet – which meant I could get on with the stuff I needed to do.
Even when it’s full-on raining, we put on our waterproofs and wellies and go and jump in puddles. Everyone gets a chance to let off some steam, get some fresh air and exercise, and the kids wear themselves out enough to afford me some downtime (instead of getting sick of the sound of my own voice reprimanding or coaxing).
If you’re brave enough to do it in torrential rain that just won’t let up, pull on your wellies and go and splash in something wet and muddy. When you come home, just put on some dry clothes and make a well-deserved hot chocolate. If that’s really not your cup of tea, go and grab a warming brew from somewhere you and the kiddies can play indoors.
Release your inner child and stick two fingers up to the rain. You’ll feel better for it.
Part of this post was written for WikiPlacesForKids.com – Places to go for kids (and grown ups) – for that much needed hour (or seven!) out of the house.