I asked a preschooler, “Have you made a snowman this year?” She looked at me and said, “I made a snowman with play dough inside. Actually it was not a man. It was a boy, and it was not made from snow. It was made from play dough. So yes, my snowman was a play dough boy, and he was fun! My mom won’t let me go outside because it is too cold. But if you make a snowman inside with play dough it does not melt, and your hands don’t need mittens. Do you want to know anything else?”
Children are able to see good in so many situations while adults can often gravitate to the negatives. In the Chicago area today it is -19° with a wind-chill of -37°. That is definitely not a temperature anyone can build a snowman in. The preschoolers here have not had a lot of outside time. The children have spent a lot of time looking outside a window at a snowy, windy scene. Most young children do not know what it really means to feel frostbite and the cold that can accompany too much outside fun.
Adults understand the cold. They understand the dangers and the annoyances that accompany sub-zero temperatures. They are the ones who have to fight children to get mittens and gloves on. They are the ones who make promises of treats if a child puts on a scarf. They are the one who buy cute hats with ears that pop up to make the hats more enjoyable. Adults are also the ones who have to shovel the snow and make sure a car has gas in it. All this can be quite taxing as the winter keeps blowing in.
Adults may enjoy the winters more if they looked at ways to make snowmen indoors. A free spirit is something to embrace. If you cannot enjoy the outdoors, enjoy the indoors. Modify your idea of fun and make it happen wherever you are. Fun is something that can be found in any temperature, in any weather and with any number of people. “Fun” has no limitations except the ones our attitude allows. This snow and cold will not last forever and neither will young children. Both are here for a season, and then we will be on to a new type of fun or a new type of complaint. The choice is always yours. You can have fun despite what is happening to everything around you. Watch young children, they are good teachers. “Fun” is on their agenda everyday no matter what the weatherman is forecasting.
- What fun is on your agenda today?
- When have you changed either your attitude or your circumstances in order to have a pleasant outcome?
- What can you do to add fun to someone else’s life?
“Snow and adolescence are the only problems that disappear if you ignore them long enough.” Earl Wilson
P.S. After I talked to the girl, I asked a boy this same question, “Did you make a snowman this year?” He answered, “Yes.” Then he went on to play with some trucks. If you want to have less talking time with your fun, you may want to seek out a little boy.