We just got back from a week at our best friends' lake house - it was almost everything we hoped it would be ... Good Friends, Good Food, BAD Weather. Bad. Thunderstorms on the first day were actually beautiful and welcomed. There's something about sitting on the porch listening to the storm that had a calming affect on all of us. Lots of cuddling and even some hot chocolate in July. We had left realllly early so the boys were knocked out and took a heavenly nap. That was day one. By day 4 of the rain we were going a little stir crazy!
After three days of crafts, songs, movies, baking and indoor play, we were ready to kick the kiddos outside ... rain or no rain. Well, we did, and they had a blast! Here's a few of our new favorite Sensory Play ideas.
Puddle Jumping! Let a little boy outside during a rain shower and he'll find the puddles. Splashing and jumping took up the better part of an hour, but we got a little creative too. We practiced our animal walks and played "Mother May I" ... LM, take 3 giant frog jumps over these puddles. Bear, waddle like a penguin across this puddle. R, stomp like an elephant and swing your trunk through that big puddle. Who can make the biggest splash???
Mud Pies: We had all the sand toys out already, let's put them to use! We dug and squished and molded mud. Thick, squishy, messy mud. Pretty much anything we usually do with shaving cream we did with mud instead. LM wrote his name in the mud, we even "painted" the sidewalk with it. Added bonus: walking barefoot! Dig your toes in and pull them out for a satisfying "squelch" sound.
Nature Walk: While we're barefoot in the mud - let's take a barefoot walk and feel how different everything feels when it's wet. I told a modified version of "Going on a Bear Hunt" and we squished through mud, ran through the field and kicked through the puddles hunting for our bear. We also collected all sorts of little boy treasures in our pails ... leaves, worms, rocks and bugs.
Fill the Bucket: After 4 days of rain there was ALOT of water around. Garbage pails and flower pots were full. We gave each of the boys a sand pail and sent the on a mission: fill this giant garbage can to the top! They had a great time trying to carry full buckets (heavy work!) across the yard to fill the can. A little teamwork to build social skills ... LM and R carried buckets together by putting a piece of wood through the handle and getting on either side. LM ran right to the drain under the gutter and refilled his buckets rather quickly ... Bear stood still and tried to fill his pail with the drizzle that was still falling - he might still be out there ... lol.
How Wet Can You Get?: BY the end of the afternoon we had ditched the boots and raincoats and ultimately changed into bathing suits. One last mission ... get as wet as you can! "I'm getting wet under the trees!" "I'm getting wet in a puddle!" LM laid down on his back and let the rain cover him - Bear opened his mouth and tried to catch rain drops. All the boys "washed" the cars and splashed each other with sheets of water. We even pulled out the water guns.
Singing in the Rain: How many "rain songs" can you think of? We sang a lot! This was our favorite:
Bear is splashing in the water,
Bear is spalshing in the water,
Bear is splashing in the water ...
But he didn't get his bellybutton wet. Yet!
Drying Off: All good things must come to an end. Aunt Jenn was nice enough to put our towels in the dryer and they were cuddly warm when we stripped down and then wrapped up each little puddle jumper. Wrap them tight and hug them close - this was a day we won't soon forget.
Sing and Play the Sensory Way!