Give your children simple experiences, like splashing in puddles or water.

Recently, my daughter mentioned she got down when the weather was rainy. I remembered how my mother would get sick of me and my three siblings when it was rainy. “Outside!!!”, was her command. We donned our raincoats and boots to endure the Minnesota downpour. I never remember being excited about going out, but once there, I have very fond memories: jumping in puddles, making mud pies, and making series of damns to contain the stream coming down the side of the road. We would be out there for hours.

People ask me if I spoil my grandson. After all, he is my only grandchild and I waited a long time for him. My answer is always, “No.” I do, however, look for things that I believe will improve his life. In this case, I ordered a pair of rain boots and head-to-foot rain gear. His first outing was the backyard in a little wading pool. I hope someday he will be able to jump in puddles outside or enjoy the water of San Francisco Bay.

Toys are very limiting, but real-life provides many opportunities for children. I believe my grandson will have hours of fun in his ran gear, get great exercise and fresh air, and learn to enjoy nature.

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