Sunday, March 8, 2009

In & Out

When I was a kid, I usually preferred books over bicycles and dress-up clothes over dirt.  I was an indoor girl...and still am.

The problem is, I have an active three-year-old who loves to play outside.  She's gotten to know some neighbor kids, and I'll be honest--she hasn't gotten to play with them nearly as much as she should.  The Engineer and I are trying to change that.

So today, we walked out the door, where other kids were playing on our cul-de-sac.  I sat in a lawn chair and chatted with moms and dads.  (The Engineer is fighting off a sinus infection, so he got a lot of much-needed relaxation inside.)

For introverts like me, prioritizing friendships is hard.  But when I've taken Chickie out to play recently, I've gotten to know my neighbors just a little better.  I've been reminded how important that is.  I've found out about stay-at-home moms I didn't even know about, right there on my street--moms I can go to in the middle of the day if I need something.  Today I got encouraging words about Chickie's ongoing potty training struggles from a mom who's "been there/done that."

Seeing Chickie getting sidewalk chalk all over her clothes, racing with other kids, and building friendships--that brings me joy.  As does watching my social little Zoodle, building his fan club as he charms the adults.  Zoodle even reached an important milestone while we were outside today--but more on that tomorrow.

All in all...I've been having fun outside.  (Wow!)

For me, sitting inside the comfort of my home, being introverted, will always be an important part of recharging my batteries.  But it's good to be reminded that the "great outdoors" really is a great place to be.


Sandra said...

I've always said, if you want to meet your neighbors, have children.

Good neighbors are a gift -- when you buy a house good neighbors are in no way guaranteed as part of the purchase price!

IsDihara said...

Apologies in advance if this comment turns into a bit of a's the jist for the short-tempered set: I've miss your blog!

I've been away for several weeks, doing the Whirlwind Kiddie Birthday Tour, and then I joined the Facebook throng (enuf' said). And I just got back to catching up on my fave blogs. After rushing to yours, I sighed a contented sigh and read slowly back through to the last post I remembered. It was an embarrassingly long list of posts. And my first thought was...

I missed your blog. I really did. It's good, heart-soothing and most of all REAL stuff. Thanks for writing it. And being so warm and original.

Dina said...

Having a sense of community is so wonderful and needed. I love the neighborhood we moved into about a year and a half ago. I look forward to spring and summer when everybody is outside more and we all chat on a more regular basis.

That being said, I love the indoor community I've found via blogging and Facebook as well. Sometimes, it's a challenge to not get too caught up in it and balance time. Everything is about balance though. And, as a mother of a 2 1/2 year old, I've found both comfort and good advice from your posts. So, for the sake of all of us who enjoy your blog, I hope you always have time for your blogging neighbors. :)

C. Beth said...

Sandra--Very true--we have definitely been blessed with our neighbors, at both of our houses!

Isdihara--Wow, what a wonderfully encouraging, sweet comment! Thank you so much!! It means a lot.

Dina--So true! I think the "indoor community" is part of what keeps me sane as a SAHM. So don't worry.... I'm not going anywhere any time soon. :)

LEstes65 said...

How interesting. I prefer being inside. But I think it's because I feel like I'm constantly overwhelmed and going going going. So, when given the choice, I choose a nice mellow computer or couch time. But today was too gorgeous. And my boys suffer for my inside bent. So I pushed myself and dragged my screen-addicted boys outside, away from the iPod, computer, TV. We all got on our bikes and rode around the 'hood. Spent some time in the tot-lot with 2 neighbor tots. Always fun.

So, my extrovert inside loving self got out, too!

GB said...

I live in New Zealand and an Island off the coast of Scotland. Both are relatively safe and outdoor environments.

What saddens me is that in many communities children can't run free outside without being watched. It is a sad reflection on society. By the way I do appreciate that your children are too young to be out of your sight anyway.