For me, play has changed over the past ten years. Age has helped me to have a greater appreciation of tiny moments of play; chronic pain from compressed nerves throughout my body (and for which no doctor can figure out the origin) has corraled me into calmer and geographically closer forms of play.
Of course, I play with this guy a lot - 18 months old and a complete teenager.
I play by growing things. I have jumped into gardening since turning 50 - seeing things grow because I have nurtured them is intrinsically rewarding. I check on the sprouts daily and am always excited to see the green tendrils of growth. This week I am trying a new experiment - growing veggies indoors. So far these peas are looking good! My daughter is a farmer at heart and works at an organic market, so we share our love of fresh, healthy food.
I play by doodling - the bright colors make me happy.
And by listening to music, like the amazing artist Brandi Carlile:
Save Part of Yourself for Me.
When I am able, and as much as I am able, I play outdoors. This is a from a hiking trip I took with my daughter, to Berkeley Springs, WV.
I play by nurturing bees. I worry that so many colonies have died. I celebrate every bee I see and I grow things that will help them to thrive. This butterfly bush is right outside my front door and is a haven for honeybees and bumblebees. I watch for them like a mother hen.
I play by cooking! I love roasting vegetables with olive oil and spices. I eat a huge bowl of them almost daily. Here I have purple potatoes, sweet onions, green kale and cauliflower, the "before roasting" shot.
I play by "Making" multimedia projects. Participating in #CLMOOC encouraged me to try new things and play with tools I had not used before, such as PicMonkey.
I take photos on my walks, which are meditational and exhilarating at the same time. I crave being outside, and if I don't get enough outdoor "play" time, my brain doesn't like it.
In the tree trunk I saw a face. In the top right shot, I saw a Woolly Mammoth, and in the bottom right I saw pure beauty.
Thanks again, Kim, for the inspiration! My hope for this school year is to incorporate as much play and reflection with my students as possible.