Swingin’ in the rain


While I don’t exactly bubble-wrap the tiny people, I’ve always been a little reluctant to let them play outside when the weather turns cool and rainy. Such was the case this morning, as a murky grey sky intermittently spat out sullen drabs of rain. Consequently, Bugaboo, Beanie, and Mr. Man spent a fair amount of time this morning looking longingly out the kitchen window and heaving sighs far larger than one might credit to such little bodies.

I made pancakes for lunch in an effort to mitigate their melancholy, which helped slightly, and allowed the girlies to watch “The Care Bears Movie” while the boys napped and I sorted five hundred loads of laundry. I tried singing, Play-Doh, raisins (they’re made from grapes and sunshine, after all), counting blessings, and a dozen or so other “can’t miss” tactics, all to no avail.

Finally, I stuck my head out the back door while folding a load of laundry. Then I thought about one of those things my head knows that contradicts the advice from Mom and Granny I carry in my heart, to wit: playing in the rain will not make you sick.

When I came back up the stairs with the load of folded laundry, Bugaboo and Beanie were glumly parked on the couch perusing a couple of their brothers’ books. I didn’t really expect the response they gave to my offhanded, “Okay, ladybugs, if you put on long pants, long sleeves, and shoes, you may play outside.  Just come in if you get cold and wet, preferably before you start whining.”

For a moment, I thought I had somehow pitched a no-hitter in game 7 of the World Series.  There was THAT MUCH cheering, jumping up and down, and general unfettered celebrating.

Off they went, waking their brothers with their thunderous bounding and jumping down the stairs.   Mr. Man, who wasn’t feeling terribly energetic today, decided his sisters were welcome to have the rainy backyard all to themselves, and wandered upstairs to play with Alphie and cadge a little extra storytime.  Baby Guy practiced his crawling and, somewhat to my surprise, came within about four degrees of pulling himself up to a stand before toppling over onto a giant teddy bear (thanks, Grandpa!).

Also somewhat to my surprise, the girls came in about a half hour before I would have called them for dinner.  The rain had stopped completely, and the sun was shyly extending a few tentative rays through a muck of a sky; apparently, the fun of being outside this afternoon wore off a bit when the rain ceased!

After dinner, Mr. Man decided that the new evening ritual of raising a post-dinner ruckus in the yard must be observed.  I am told that this time, it was he who removed Beanie’s boot and gave it to Smudgie to start the night’s game of “chase the puppy.”

Today’s prayer: Lord, Your blessings saw the beauty of a grey and rainy day, and rejoiced when they were allowed outside to enjoy what You had sent.  Thank You for reminding me, through their eyes, that You send blessings every day, if I open my eyes to see them.  Help me to always recognize the wonder of Your gifts, even when they don’t seem to be what the world would consider largesse.  You give me opportunities to teach Your blessings that beauty is not confined to sunshine and rainbows; thank You for the chance to learn it from them, as well.

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