Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Finding Beauty in the Earth

Dear Em,
Yesterday was Earth Day. I didn't even realize until midway through the day. I immediately felt guilty that I hadn't planned anything to commemorate the day. I tried to think of last minute learning experiences I could plan. Buuuuuut, then I forgot it was Earth Day again. You know, it was a typical busy day. A day that started with loading you in the car, starting it, & realizing that my back tire was flat & that my schedule was already completely changing. It was a day where if it wasn't written down, it wasn't remembered.

I continued to forget it was Earth Day when I asked you if you wanted to join me in a trip to Home Depot to pick up more gardening supplies (We've kept our herbs alive for a whole week & a half & am so excited I decided to add another herb plant to the sill). You didn't want to join me, & because Earth Day continued to slip my mind, I didn't try to urge into a fun Earth Day activity.

So, we didn't do anything to commemorate the day. We didn't create anything out of recycled materials. We didn't plant anything. We didn't go on a any nature walks. For a moment I felt like I had Mommy failed this learning opportunity, but only for a moment. I thought about this past week. You've helped me water our herbs & plants inside. Outside, flowers are blooming & trees are budding all around us. Each day we've peeked & marveled at the changes going on right in front of our eyes. We've tried to soak up every outside moment we could, appreciating the sunshine & the green grass & the colorful flowers & even the rain that waters it all.

You want to pick every flower & give it to someone special, but we've urged you not to pick the flowers in the gardens. That's OK with you. Most of your favorite flowers lie outside of the confines of the garden. Your very favorites: Dandelions.

You spent at least an hour the other day running in & out of the house. You collected as many dandelions as you could find, one by one. After each one, you ran into the house holding your little treasure proudly. "Mommy, these have to go in the cup!" I had filled a small yellow cup with water & placed it with some of our other plants on the window shelf. By the end of the weekend, the yellow cup was overflowing.

I remember being young & turning my nose up at dandelions being called weeds. To me they were beautiful flowers. I can't help but smile as I see the same sparkle in your eyes as you crouch in the grass surrounded by your beloved sunshiney flowers.

I think it's safe to say we can save our preplanned Earth Day lessons this year. For this year, you were able to find the beauty of the Earth all by yourself. You found delight in what others cast away as garbage. I hope you'll always hold that love for the Earth in your heart- even for the weeds.

I love you so,

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