Wednesday, September 28, 2011

In Which Connor And I Have An Adventure

So today dawned beautifully clear and sunny, with just a hint of a crisp wind to remind us all that fall is here and winter is right around the corner.  Connor has no school on Wednesdays and the day was far too lovely too spend indoors, so the little guy and I hopped in the car and drove out to find some fun!

We stopped for some lunch at a yummy pho place, where Connor sampled the broth and decided it was pretty tasty.  Then we ran some errands, stopped back by the house for a quick restocking on Connor's supplies (and for him to have a small seizure-- the only one of the day), and we were off to the park!

Bradley Park is our local all-inclusive park with a fully wheelchair accessible playground, and we love it.  There are always so many interesting things going on there; this time a local ROTC group was practicing their marching skills in the middle of the park's grassy area, a large group of children were climbing trees and popping out to wave at passersby, and off to one side a young man in a full harness was flying his power kite.  There wasn't really enough wind to do any real kite jumping, but it was neat to see the huge kite up in the air!

So after a quick jaunt on the fully accessible trail through the woods around the park it was time to get straight to the fun!  We spent some time on the swings-- Connor's favorite park activity-- and then spent some time standing and hitting the drums and maracas on the musical instrument set, going down the slides and bouncing in the bouncy car.  Then we had to hit the swings for a second round, because they were just too much fun!  The sun was pretty bright so Connor kept his eyes closed while I pushed him back and forth, but his adorable smile told me just how much he was enjoying himself.

After that we hit the trail again, and this time we did what I like to call an "Adventure Walk."  Every fifteen or twenty feet I stop the wheelchair, find something interesting lying near the trail, like a branch from a pine tree with the needles still intact, a crinkly yellow-brown maple leaf, or a mossy stick, and I bring it over to Connor.  I tell him all about it while encouraging him to look at, smell, and feel all the parts of whatever it is I find.  Then I put it back where I found it and we continue our walk. 

It's a slow activity; usually it takes us about twenty minutes to make one circuit of the trail, which is less than a mile long.  It's a surprisingly tiring activity for the little guy, though, because there are so many new things for him to focus on.  Usually by the end of the trail he's rubbing his eyes, and he went to bed early tonight and is sleeping well, which is a bonus for me! 

Today's Adventure Walk contained a bit of actual adventure; when we were about halfway down the trail we heard an extremely loud crack that echoed all over the park.  I thought perhaps it was a car backfiring.  The next walker we saw coming the opposite direction down the trail told us a tree had fallen across it right next to her!  Sure enough, a few minutes later we rounded a corner and found a fairly large tree sprawled down part of the length of the trail-- it looked like the trunk had rotted through at the base and it had toppled of its own accord.  I parked Connor and went to work breaking off branches and moving them out of the way.  Soon other park goers pitched in, and a few minutes later we had all the smaller branches off the tree and out of the way of the road, leaving plenty of room for people to get by.  The trunk of the tree was too large to move, but luckily there was still more than enough room to get Connor's wheelchair past it and we completed our trip back out of the woods without further incident. 

So except for that bit of excitement I'd call the park trip a rousing success! 


1 comment:

krlr said...

What a glorious day. Fall is my favorite time of year - Inspires me to get my kiddos out & about this weekend.

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