Wednesday, April 17, 2013

O is for Outside (by Annie Yearout)

For this year's A-Z Challenge, I am organising my writing group's participation for the first time. So I am posting each entry here as well as on the website, Write On, Mamas! who are a writing group based in the San Francisco North Bay area. We will have 25 Mamas and one Papa writing on a different letter of the alphabet during the A-Z Blog Challenge. Comments are always so appreciated here or it would also be lovely if you would comment on the Write On, Mamas! blog. Thanks and look forward to reading your blog.

Photography by Mary Allison Tierney

Getting the Kids Outside – Sometimes There Isn’t a Green Hilltop in the Alps for You, Julie Andrews and Your Brood to Play On

My son’s schoolyard playground doesn’t have a blade of grass. Not a single, foot-stomping, bee-hiding, soft-landing cushion of Ma Nature’s finest carpeting….

No grass.

It’s all blacktop.

Hot, hard, odorous, steaming blacktop.

But that doesn’t stop my son and friends from hooting with yahoos!!! and wild and free abandon when that recess bell rings. Because, it’s still: Getting Outside.

I think to myself: Outside doesn’t just have to mean running around with backpacks on a gloriously, green hilltop in the Alps of Nature spinning and spinning and singing fa-la-la and doe-a-deer like Julie Andrews in a long skirt….

Creative play and imagination combined with small moments of nature’s gifts happen Outside on the hardtop, too. Fresh air wafts into the kids’ noggins as they bend their bodies into contortions on the swinging bars and smack that ball out and over our heads and into the street.

Hoppety-scotchety, jumppety-jump, four-square, tag-you’re-it!

All while the tree branches from the house next-door bend over the schoolyard fence, hovering over the blacktop, creating shade, and sprinkling their greeny leaves on the kids below. A black feather wafts from a nearby, sneaky crow who’s ready to pounce on the spilled bag of cheesy puffs . The school garden, small and mighty, struggles in it’s over-lovedness from tiny Kindergarteners pulling at its roots. Ouch!

Gifts large and small from the Outdoors can be found everywhere – on a green, grass mountain-top AND city street. Not just in Julie Andrew’s skirts.

So…. Get Outside!

Annie was recently voted Top #3 Outdoorsy Mom Blogger in the Universe for her blog OutdoorsyMama: Honest, Adventurous, Positive Parenthood with an Outdoorsy & Humorous Twist. She currently writes with the Write On, Mamas! and gets daily affirmations from her 3 kids, husband, and hiking shoes.


  1. This is great, I have to come again to catch up. You had me at O, lol!

    Also, I've nominated you for an award :)

    1. Oooooooo.... hey Udita! It's Annie. Claire is so nice to let me comment here and i AGREE, Claire should be getting awards!!! :) And glad you found O today :) -Annie Y

  2. Replies
    1. Yay! What a day! Even if we aren't in the Alps.... it's pretty darn close! ;)

  3. So very true, more need to get outside for a view

    1. Oooooo! Agree totally - more need to get out and more would probably be happier people for it! Thanks, Pat! -Annie