Like Mommas everywhere, mine was always happy for a nice day to come along in the middle of winter. My brother and I undoubtedly drove my parents crazy in our modest home where we grew up. Whenever the sun was up and it was above 10 degrees (or 5 degrees on days when my brother and I were in rare form), we were outside. Same thing in the summer – if the sun was up, we were outside. We didn’t have air conditioning so we might as well be. Anyhow, the point is, we were outdoor children.
Mom used the few indoor moments for instruction, of course. Trying to instill in us an interest in engineering, aerodynamics and materials, I remember once when my Mom helped us make kites and told us to go outside and fly them. She seemed to be in a huge hurry for us to get them built and outside…yeah, I didn’t buy all that stuff about aerodynamics either. Indoor moments were really just accidents where they didn’t work it right to get us outside!
So, we had an absolutely beautiful weekend here in WV and we decided to do an experiment with our kids. We gathered up a few kites that we had collected at various times and headed for a flat field (there are only a few here!) since the wind was blowing on Saturday. We unwound and untangled the strings and got everything put together and took off with the kites.
Abigail’s flew pretty well and she ran around the field until she was completely covered in mud. Isaac had no luck flying his kite though. It was a Star Wars Episode 5 storm trooper kits which was all kinds of awesome but it flew like an AT-AT walker. He ran all over with it and got him self covered in mud as was proper. He really tried, dragging that kite though muck and mire as it crashed along behind him. Every now and then, the wind would catch it for a moment and toss it up in the air, only to drive it headlong back down to the mud a second later.
It just would not fly for anything. The poor kid, Isaac was terribly frustrated and I was no gem by this point either. He did help us to scientifically confirm our hypothesis – flying kites is still every bit as miserable as it was when I was a kid. I don’t know if anyone (me as a kid, or my kids) learned a thing about aerodynamics or materials, but I think there is a chance that both kids added to their vocabulary this weekend…