With winter in full swing it can sometimes be hard to find places for the kids to get their energy out without breaking the “piggy” bank. Last year someone in our home school community started ice skating at a local arena. She posted the “event” to a couple of online home school groups that I am a part of. It never ceases to amaze me how throwing a stone in a pond can have such a ripple effect! Every Thursday the rink is filled with parents and children of all ages. Chloe and Jayden loved doing it last year and were thrilled to find that so many others were participating this year as well. The thing I love is that we are able to utilize a space during their normal business hours. That means we are not required to have a certain minimum number of people in our group, we don’t have to commit to a certain amount of time or money allotment, and we have a great place to socialize and play with each other every week. The rink has their set times of “Open Skate”. We simply attend during that time. You can come or not come as your time schedule and patience allows for! It only costs $2 per skater under 18. Ice skate rental is extra but Chloe was given a hand me down pair and I found a pair for $3 at the Salvation Army for Jayden. So for driving time plus $4 the kids get an hour and 15 minutes of exercise and great social time every week during the winter. Ava and I even have picnic tables to sit at and plenty of space to roam around the arena while the others skate. Sometimes there are even little ones for Ava to engage with as well!
The reason I brought all of this up is that while we were preparing to go ice skating today it reminded me of the blogging theme for this month from NaBloPoMo. The more I think about it, the more I find way that it pops up in my life. The theme is TIES. I spend 15 minutes at the beginning of each skating session helping Chloe and Jayden lace up and TIE their skates.
Even though there is a great amount of effort required for me to be packed and ready to take them ice skating, it has been worth its weight in gold. Chloe has always had people she knew there and Jayden just expended some of his energy on the ice. Now the benefits have increased because Jayden has found some friends there as well. There is one boy in particular, I will call him T for the purpose of this blog, that has Jayden looking forward to returning each week. T and Jayden chase each other, run into each other, trip each other, and even knock each other down, and the best part is that they both LOVE it!