Friday, August 12, 2011

The Enchanted Garden

“There is a garden in every childhood, an enchanted place where colors are brighter, the air softer, and the morning more fragrant than ever again.”
--Elizabeth Lawrence

We went on a field trip with Cutie Face's preschool friends to the Oakhurst Cooperative Garden. This garden is actually within running distance and it was so much fun that I am storing it in my "destination running routes" list for future reference.

Cutie Cakes was thrilled to tag along but she got a little confused keeping up with preschool-ese.

For example: the kids all thought it was absolutely hysterical to "shoo" the flies off their food. Again. And again. And about 100 times more after that.

Poor Cutie Cakes.

After hearing "shoo" for a solid 3 minutes, she picked up her foot, hoisted it on the table, and said, loudly and definitively:


Huh? What's that?

oh :(

Don't feel too badly for her, though!

The big kids scooped her up and she quickly became the much-doted-upon child...
make that toted around child--she was dragged all over in that wagon!

Cutie Face loved pulling the wagon for all her friends

but it sure did tire her out!

Nothing that a little R&R on a bench swing couldn't fix!
of course, some children want to do it all themselves

speaking of doing it yourself, our little 18-month old led the way down the path and straight into the creek that flows through the garden. She just climbed down the bank and plopped her cute little Croc-clad feet right into that rusty water before I could even say, "WAIT!"

She kind of gave us all that look, like, "Why wait?" and that was all the older kids needed to scramble down and join her in splashing and exploring.

Sweet preschool friends. I love watching their friendship develop as they get older and learn more about the dynamics of relationships.

their foray into the creek (and the smell!) instantly brought me back to the adventures the twin and I and our neighborhood friends would have in our back yard. 

We could have spent hours in there, building forts, plopping rocks, chasing frogs, running from spiders. Ah! the memories! 

What we certainly didn't have in the same space, though, were chickens:

turns out they love the rind of watermelon. Easily pleased i suppose
and though we could dream about the coolest fort, we could never have imagined an awesomely-fun, hobbit-inspired, mud house to fuel hours of play

filled with nooks and crannies, 

benches and windows

the options for free-play were mind-boggling

unfortunately, Cutie Cakes failed to realize that the bench she is standing on in this picture did not continue forever

...and she quickly found herself on the dirt floor. To make matters worse, she had fully immersed herself in the creek so she was wet when she fell, only adding to the amount of dirt and grime she accumulated upon falling. I stripped her down but she wasn't too pleased with the current state of affairs (embarrassed for sure!) so we left quickly after that

regardless of how it ended, it was a great adventure in the garden with friends!

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