On Sunday, my husband asked the kids if they would like to accompany him and his mother, to the area botanical gardens and take a nice walk. They both declined. Disgusted by our children’s lack of desire to do nothing other than be lazy on the beautiful summer day, I ordered them to go. I was met with various objections “I’m too tired” being chief among them. Unfortunate for them, their apparent tiredness was of no concern to me and after much grumbling and being called mean, we were on our way.
When the walk commenced one couldn’t help but notice how beautiful the day really was-especially when walking among the many blooming flowers. The boy and his Grandmother paired off and immediately spotted a Great Blue Herron off in the distance looking intently into the river which snaked through the garden’s property. I stopped every so often; taking pictures of native plants, yet seemingly exotic flowers-many of which I’ve never seen before. The doll and her dad fell into easy companionship as they walked alongside one another, a few feet ahead of me. “Hey! I shouted toward my husband, “I think I just planted these in our garden yesterday…” pointing at a particular set of blooms.
“I’m going to take a picture of that tree…” The doll said, disappearing for a moment. When she rejoined us, the boy said, “Doll, did you know that’s a willow tree?” “I’m not an idiot boy!” She testily replied. “If you take some of the bark and boil it down, you could make a tea… Trying desperately to tone her brother out, half listening she replied, “I don’t like tea!” “…whose innate properties act as a pain killer?” Trying to put distance between herself and the boy, she moved at a faster pace, missing when her father added, “Okay, no pain killer for you…” The rest of us smiled and I made a mental note of a willow tree’s special properties.
At some point the doll surprised me, emerging from beneath a tree, whose branches hung down around the tree trunk, sheltering her from view. Looking back at me she pointed and said “It’s cool in there”. I smiled and replied, “I would have thought that was a mosquito hangout.” Giving me a disappointed look she replied, “Way to ruin everything mom”. “You’re welcome” I replied with a laugh.
All told, we spent a little over an hour and a half, walking around the gardens; taking pictures. While the kids may say the exercise was dumb and tiresome, I knew better and hopefully someday they will too.