Keeping the ‘Busy-Body’ Busy

Norah is BUSY! She is nearly 2 1/2- so what can I expect? She loves playing Mommy, pretending to go to Target, finger painting, blowing bubbles, doing puzzles, washing her hands (and the kitchen floor at the same time), dancing, and playing “fro and catch.” But, above all things, she LOVES to play outside. From the time she was a newborn, she loved the wind in her face and the feel of the fresh air. Taking her outside was our “go-to move” for her as a newborn. Anytime she started crying, we would open the back door and she would bat her eyes and breathe that sigh of relief that puts all parents at ease.

She has always loved walks with Grandpa and Grandma and she has enjoyed hundreds of miles in her running stroller. She asks to eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner outside on an almost daily basis and she could pretend for hours in her climber without ever asking to go inside.

It has been a beautiful fall here in Oklahoma, so we have spent A LOT of time outside the last few weeks. I have been stretched to create new adventures to keep both my little busy-body and myself entertained in our postage stamp backyard. Here are a few ideas that we have come up with in the last few weeks:

1. Having an Art Show- ever seen Yo Gabba Gabba? Foofa “mixes up colors” and Norah loves to do the same. We line up all her finger-paint pictures, talk about the colors, the pictures she drew, and then make a big deal about how hard she worked on the pictures. Yesterday, we did this and she told me, “You did really good job, Mommy! You work so hard!” All the while she was giving 2 thumbs up! She beat me to the punch! 😉

2. Walk the dog- Norah loves to put the leash on our dog, Xavi, and walk or run her to the corner. She tells me, “I doing like Mommy do!” and then after about 10 minutes she says, “I SOOOO sweaty, better go get drink.” We sit on the driveway and drink our water… and of course wave to all the cars that drive by.

3. Check out the sky- At dusk, Norah loves to go outside and point out the moon, starts, clouds, birds, etc. She loves to climb up on her climber and tell me everything she can see. If you she can see our neighbor girl playing that is the icing-on-the-cake for her!

4. Send mail- we write letters outside, put stamps and stickers on our cards, and put it in the mailbox. If the mail has already come for the day, we sit on the driveway and “read” magazines together and then sort the mail into trash or for Daddy piles.

5. Build a fort- Norah and Jonah both LOVED this! We gathered all our outdoor furniture, the kiddie pool, and an old sheet to make a fort in the backyard. We lined Norah’s climber up so that the only opening into the fort was through her slide- so you had to slide down the slide into the fort. She thought it was so fun to lay on the ground coo-ing with Jonah, eating snacks, and sliding into her fort.

6. Bubbles, bubbles, and more bubbles- we literally do bubbles outside EVERYDAY! We run with the bubble wand, blow, and try to catch the bubbles back on the wand so that Jonah can pop them. Norah LOVES bubbles!

7.Playing in the rain- Most people think that a rainy day is a good day for cuddles on the couch and movies, not Norah. Rainy days are probably her favorite, because it means a whole new kid of outdoor adventure. She loves her rain boots, jumping in puddles, and playing with an umbrella. She gets SOOOO excited to see rain!

8. Painting with water- this was our latest adventure and kept Norah entertained for almost an hour. We filled a mixing bowl with regular tap water and got a regular paint brush. I told Norah she could paint anything and everything. She thought it was great and took her task of painting the house, slides, windows VERY seriously. She was SO busy! This was great because it was both easy and mess free!

Jonah is always LOVES being outside too- sometimes we use the kiddie pool as a little outdoor play pen but as of recent he learned how to crawl out…. now we’re onto making sure he doesn’t eat too much grass…because a little never hurt, right?

Even when we can’t go outside, Norah wishes she could 🙂 She’s my little Norah the Explorer!

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