I confess, I've been party to this conspiracy, but quite frankly I've had enough. Kids are bombarded with 'do not run' and 'no ball games' signs, prevented from having fun in school or public spaces to reduce the risk of accidents or litigation. There are too many 'wet breaks', too many regulations - no snowball fights, no going outdoors without a sunhat and factor 5 million.
Will our kids even know one season from another? Will they know how to do anything in the real world, outside the confines of a soft play park with it's rounded corners, safety nets and padded bumpers?
Uh-uh. Enough is enough. This week we ripped up the modern-day parenting rule book and went back to proper childhood adventures and escapades. Boy was it fun!
Rivers; streams and waterfalls were our paddling pool.
The sea was our swimming pool. Or pure, clean ravines.
We ditched the games console in favour of catching crabs off the quayside and spotting boats through binoculours.
Evening TV made way for watching the birds feed outside our window. We saw woodpeckers; a jay; robins; swallows; blue tits; coal tits and red kites. Instead of movies at the cinema, we watched the moving pictures from the car window as we wound our way through Snowdonia and down to Cardigan Bay, watching the scenes change from seaside town to rocky outcrops to expansive forests and crashing waterfalls to sweeping fields and vast coastlines.
No trips to the park or soft-play purgatory. We found swings in the woods, or hammocks in the hotel garden.
Mountains and rocks were for clambering and climbing.
We swapped the sofa for huge weathered stones, with far better views.
The kitchen; cooker and dining room was dumped in favour of barbecues, blankets and picnics.
Castles; caves and underground mines were for exploring with awe and wonder.
Sure, it was hard at first. Trying not to worry about her falling in the water, or bashing her head on a rock, but once you got into the swing of it, loosened the reigns and relaxed, it was the most giddily liberating feeling. A holiday of memories, of good times and the only tears and tantrums all week were when it was time to leave and come home.
Linking up with Parenting Pin it Party and Country Kids - getting kids outdoors.