Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Nature Walk

"I have to go pee!"

"Okay...go run quick into the bushes." I said pointing to the rectangular shape of bushes beside the bright slides and black swings.

He did his business and then wandered over to the wooded area behind the park.

I knew where this was going to go.

The interest in the slides and monkey bars had waned quickly.

I sighed and protested.  I wasn't wearing the right shoes.

Truth be told...I wasn't wearing the right shoes...but it also never fails that I injure myself in those woods.  Right shoes or no right shoes.

My protests were half-hearted and they knew so.  Two against one. On they marched, their legs small and minds big.

Determined for adventure.

"AH! Ooof!  Man! That HURT!"  I yawped as my forehead met a sharp branch upon entering a 'whole new world'.

"Mummy where har you?" Finley yelled out.  I could see him plainly through sun dappled trees - standing in a small clearing looking around.  For me.  My heart cinched at his pronunciation of 'are' with the 'h' in front.  Ah the 2 year old verbal quirks.  I can't get enough.

"I'm right here Fin!" I said coming into the clearing.

"Awight Mummy?"

"Yes buddy, I'm alright."  My sensitive little one.  Concerned for others at such a young age.  That's my son, I thought proudly to myself.

"Mumma it's a whole new world in here.  I want to live here!"  Adrian proclaimed hiking confidently down an unbeaten path.

"Buddy - you're not on the path...why don't you come this way?"

"I'm on my own path - it's a path!"

Well.  I  couldn't argue with that now could I?  That's my son, I thought proudly once again.  May he always take the unbeaten path.

We came upon a large fallen tree.  Finley bent over at his waist excitedly pointing, "'Nake Mummy!  'Nake!"

I quickly walked over because the last time he saw a snake was in our back yard and I (shamefully) thought he was full of poppycock.  Sure enough - there was a not so small garter snake in our yard which I unsuccessfully tried to capture. (I had gardening gloves on.  I'm not that brave.)

This time it was just an wriggling, squiggly earth worm.  Adrian picked it up, eeked and dropped the poor thing. Finley decided the worm was looking for a 'nack which prompted a discussion on what worms eat.  We (not so) firmly decided on leaves and dirt? (quite honestly I have no idea but logic tells me that's about right - clearly, nature biologist I am not)  And then I forced them to sit beside me on the huge fallen tree trunk so I could take our picture.

I kept telling them to keep their sunglasses on - I was so paranoid one of their
beautiful eyes was going to get poked out by a random tree branch.  And that there was
poison ivy.  And we might encounter a bear.  Okay - so not really the bear BUT there was a bear
found in a park in this very city not a few weeks back!  It had to be shot!  True story!

We hiked on (though - really - it wasn't really hiking at all...we basically just stayed in the same little area, walking in circles).  Adrian found what looked like a shelter made from fallen tree branches.  There were rolled up old newspapers.  They kept calling it the 'scary spider tree' and Finley was not a fan.  It didn't help that we heard a squeal shortly after finding it (which happened to be from a little school girl I'm sure during a recess break - since we were behind an elementary school).

As you can see from Fin's expression, my kids tend toward the dramatic.
And stubborn - my eldest is wearing pajama pants.  I wasn't about to
wage war on that one.  I attempted and quickly lost steam.  At least he
was wearing pants.  Period.
"Okay guys, I'm getting hungry.  It's time to head out and go home for lunch."

"But Mumma - I really want to live here!"

"You do?  What would we eat?"

"Leaves!"  And with that he promptly ate a leaf.  And I prayed to God that it wasn't poisonous.  He unconvincingly "Mmm'd" with a smile.  Then spit it out.

"That's what I thought.  No more eating leaves.  You don't know what's peed or pooped on it."

"Like what?"

"A squirrel.  Or a bunny.  Or a bird."

"Or a skunk!"

"Ewwwwww!" my little one said with a scrunched up face.

"And what if it rained?  Where would we sleep?"

"Under that shelter!"

Of-course.  Why didn't I think of that?

"I think I like our house better.  Okay monkeys, let's rock and roll."

And off we trudged into the sunlit field with discussions of what we would be having for lunch.

It was certainly not going to be tree leaves.


middle child said...

That sounds like it was so much fun.
It's awesome again seeing the world through a childs innocent and inquisitive minds. Love your posts!

Emily said...

Oh gosh, I'm glad you guys didn't move into a random clearing in the woods, but I loved their logic. Very persuasive!

Kristin said...

oh i just love this! my girls and i are always out enjoying nature's playground. i just love the conversation that nature inspires. i, like you, struggle with those crazy questions..the one answer i am good at is, "everything poops." yes, snails, worms, bugs, bees...they always ask if these things we meet up with poop. funny kids!

Ado said...

Your chronicles of nature post and photos on FB make me wish we lived right next door to each other. Ella loves nature (way more than I do) and we could all go on little hikes and picnics together. Hmph! I wish we lived next door!