Learning from my toddler how to practice mindfulness with curiosity

A lot of the mindfulness exercises and games I do at home are activities that my older daughter actively engages in because of her age.  My 2-year old participates as much as she is able to, but I think we need a couple of more years for her to really get a lot out of our planned activities.  The other day, however, I realized that my 2-year old spends most of her day “practicing” mindfulness just by doing what she does best- exploring everything with intense curiosity and wonder.

We’ve started doing weekly walks right before her music class to just leisurely pass about thirty minutes we have together before her class begins.  During our walks, my 2-year old stops every few seconds- observing, commenting, touching all the things she sees in her sight.  She touches leaves, steps in puddles, pauses when she hears chirping birds.  She looks up and down, and asks “what’s that mama?” at almost every step, when she sees simple things like wrappers and cigarette boxes.  We don’t make it very far during our half-hour walk, but it doesn’t even matter- she has a blast.  Everything is a new wonder to her and she seems genuinely intrigued to learn more.

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