A nice family walk!So the kids were starting to feel better after their recent illnesses, and after being pretty much snowed in for three days they were climbing the walls and in need of some fresh air! We are lucky enough to live on the doorstep of the Staffordshire Moorlands and the Peak District, so there are plenty of beautiful places to go for a family walk. With there still being quite a lot of snow around, we opted for one of the flatter locations, Rudyard Lake. The lake (which started life as a reservoir in 1797) was the first meeting place of Rudyard Kipling's parents!
All wrapped up!The kids were excited about going on a snowy welly walk, so we all wrapped up warm with plenty of layers and extra socks! As soon as we parked up in what was now slush, I didn't think our walk was going to end well! But as good parents do, we put on a brave face and our biggest, most convincing, "You'll enjoy this!" smiles and off we went!
We started our careful walk up the snow covered path, alongside the working steam engine railway track. (It wasn't running today due to the weather, but it doesn't cost much for a train ride when it's operating.) The kids were in their element, crunching through the ice and jumping in slushy puddles, giggling and playing. This is what it's all about, right? Right. Until they get wet...and cold! And they've walked their little legs off! We stopped by the lake to look at the ducks and the boats, which cheered them up a bit!
"Can we have an ice cream?"There is a little cafe by the lake, where Hubby and I stopped for a well deserved coffee, and Staffordshire oatcakes with cheese to warm up the kids! They really enjoyed their snack, despite asking for ice cream! To be honest, I was so glad to see Rosie enjoy eating again after being off her food for so long. But after a while, the cold started to kick in and they were ready to go home. Trouble is, that meant walking back the way we came... and that wasn't something either of them fancied doing! And didn't we know it...
Have you ever tried to convince a tired, cold 4 year old and a stubborn, wet 2 year old to do something they don't want to do?! I'm sure many of you have been there, trying out all the bribes you can think of, all the while trying to keep that plastered on, "I'm the parent and I'm in control," smile for the benefit of passers by! What started out as an idealistic family walk in beautiful surroundings, ended up with tears, tantrums and tiredness! But it's character building for parents and kids alike, right?!
When we finally got everyone back to the car, Hubby and I were as exhausted as the kids but you have to laugh about it don't you? They may have been a bit miserable at the end, but we were all out together, spending time in each other's company and that to me is what life is all about. I'm sure the kids will thank us for it one day!
If nothing else, we all learn to be a bit more resilient when faced with life's little challenges. Being a parent has taught me how to shrug off the unwanted glances of those around you who just don't understand. In these situations, my children are just finding a way to express an opinion; they too are learning about the world and what it's all about... even if it's being taken out in the cold for yet another "character building" welly walk! Just enjoy your adventures with your little ones, and even if they don't go as planned, it's ok. Be grateful for the time you spend together and look for the positives in every situation.
Finding joy in the little things: Not every family trip out is perfect, as social media will have you believe, so don't stress when things don't pan out how you imagined. When I asked the children what they enjoyed about our walk, they said, "running in the snow and jumping in slushy puddles!" Not one mention of being wet or tired! That makes it all worthwhile!
You can find out more about Rudyard Lake here.
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