We cross the dog park, running up and down the hill a few times for good measure.
The view over the tracks, where mummy's tired arms have to lift up each in turn to look for trains.
We all saw one passing today!
A one year old has to stop and touch EVERYTHING. Poke that spider, feel the moss, pick up every pebble. They can't keep up, because they have no interest in the destination or even the route, they just want to explore.
A three year old is often fully immersed in their imaginary world. They are touching things a bit less, but just as likely to be either miles behind or running in front because they go where their dreams take them. They may not hear at all when you say their name, so better be within touching distance! They may appear to walk the whole way looking only at their feet, or with their eyes fixed on the clouds in the sky.
A six year old is competant and big and brave. They are likely to be ahead, telling everyone else where to go. They know best, about crossings and things that are safe to climb. ;) They love to race and be set challenges. When you least expect it they tell you something deep and perceptive, or just totally bizarre, that sets you off balance.
I love walking with my children - so long as I walk in step with their development and remember the tricks that keep us all together. And especially so long as I enjoy the journey and stop thinking about time or destination and just be there in the moment with them.