"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.
"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.
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.
"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."
"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.