We had a stretch of rainy weather and it was a sorta brutal reminder that our days of killing an hour or two at the park, letting this one tire herself out while I sip my coffee, are nearly at an end. When we are house-bound Junip gets crazy. If there are no rubber chips, slides, and merry-go-rounds to entertain her, she expects me to do it, silly girl. Or else I suffer the consequences: favorite solo games include scooping up dirty laundry by the armfuls and sprinkling it throughout the second floor, stuffing toys behind the stove, prying the closet door open and throwing daddy’s discs all over, and messing with the knobs on the record player, preferably while we’re listening to something, as that elicits a more dramatic response (especially the volume knob). It could be a really long winter.

The good news is, those rainy days have inspired a new-found love for the outdoors that, so far at least, has us both indifferent to cloudy skies, cold wind, and wet playground equipment. Unless there is some serious water coming down on us, we are going out goddammit. Even if it’s just to stomp around for a little while and eat some leaves.

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Check that out: girl’s got some serious swagger.

That said, I scored some snowpants for her today at St. Vinny’s, and in a few weeks the community center will start offering open gym time for toddlers twice a week, so all is not lost. But still, we are appreciating this year’s last days at the park while we can.

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