River and I went for a nice stroll this morning, first to our favorite cafe for some breakfast then over to the park. He's getting so amazingly stable on his legs, I can just let him run around (or drunkenly toddle, as the case may be) and not have to hover too close. If there are any bigger kids nearby I try to keep a pretty close watch so he doesn't get pummeled, but generally I hang back and let him explore.
River likes to do all of the usual playground things--climb, swing, slide--but he's also really interested in figuring out how it all works. He'll stand at the swings, pushing them back and forth just to see them move. He'll kneel down next to the slides to see what's going on underneath. He'll push the gate open and closed, open and closed for as long as we'll let him.
After the playground we walked home and spent some time just hanging out in front of the house. He loves exploring plants, and we've been pretty good about teaching him to just look, smell, or touch gently. But he so obviously wants to dig in and play, so I've come up with a way to let him do that without destroying every pretty flower he comes across.
I've given him the express permission to pick any dandelion he sees. He gets to pick flowers and I get the yard weeded: it's a win-win situation! Since I've shown him how to do it, he's taken to it like it's his job. He now can't pass by one of those little yellow weeds without attacking it. Must. Pick. Flowers.
He likes to collect them all together, see them pile up, and admire his good work. This was todays take:
Handmade Bags at Quilt Market
5 hours ago