Sauna. It’s a very Finnish thing. In fact, I believe I have heard it said (written?) that sauna is a Finnish invention. I don’t really care who invented it, I am just thankful it was invented. I love sauna! Maybe not as much as some Finns, but I do love the heat, the sound of the water evaporating into steam and relaxing in sauna.
Up until this last Sunday, Mr Siili and I have either had to go to sauna one at a time or wait until Paxlet was asleep and hope that he would stay asleep so we could enjoy an unhurried sauna. Unfortunately, Paxlet has woken up during several saunas. Let me tell you, not very relaxing. That’s right, this last Sunday was Paxlet’s first time in sauna, at almost 14 months old.
I read on a Finnish sauna website that the average age for Finnish babies to go to sauna for the first time is 3,5 months. Paxlet is a late bloomer in this respect. I had always read and heard that it is best to wait until the child is about a year old. But then again, sauna is such an integral part of Finnish life (and death) that it makes sense that kids start going to sauna early.
When we took Paxlet to sauna, we only had a bit of löyly (steam radiating from the rocks when you sprinkle on water) so it didn’t get too hot. We also mostly kept him on a lower bench and only let him up on to the top bench to sit with Daddy when he wanted to go up there. In addition, Paxlet was only in sauna for a few minutes for the two times we let him in there, with a shower to cool down in between. As soon as his cheeks and head started getting a bit warmer, it was out of the sauna for him. Also, if Paxlet had expressed displeasure in being in there, we would have removed him immediately. In fact, it was the exact opposite: Paxlet loved sauna. He especially loved the hissing sound from the löyly (Mr Siili only tossed on a tablespoon or two of water at a time).
I can’t wait for more adventures in sauna with my boys! And no, I didn’t take any pictures of Paxlet’s first sauna. But I did take pictures of the park we went to earlier in the day.
The rapids running through the center of town and right next to the park.
Paxlet being his cute self after getting off the spider web-swing.
Paxlet sitting in the flower sand table.
One section of the park. City landscape.
Playing in the ambulance.
Laughing in the direction of a kid as he walked by. I’ve no idea why he laughed.
Walking through the train.