this is just a freebie that has nothing to do with the park. I accidentally found a post from a few years ago, when charlie was about caroline's age. It described mealtimes with him, and how hard i tried to get him to follow the same routine as we did. i have since decided to let toddlers be toddlers. I think they are intrinsically different. Not to say that they dont need to use table manners, or that sitting on the table is a good idea. She starts out in her seat, but always ends up in my lap, eating off my plate. Terrible behaviour, right?!?! How unruly! But really, isnt that how toddlers all over the world eat? is it really so bad? She will grow up soon, i think. In the meantime, if you prefer not to share a meal with us, i totally understand! its a little reminiscent of a federal disaster area.
|Birdwatching at Blue Mounds State Park|
There has been an ongoing conversation with myself in my head for the past little while: am i sad about being past the baby stage? I know I am supposed to be, most people are. I loved my babies. (hated being pregnant, but thats another story!) But that season of life can be quite limiting, in some ways. I am so excited about all the potential for sharing life with my kids. Snuggling a sweet baby is gratifying, but its one-sided. It is so neat to have a relationship with my kids, to talk to them, to see their personalities, to share in their interests, and to expose them to my interests. There is a great big world out there that we as parents have the awesome privilege of sharing with our kids. Its a great adventure! (So I am sure I will be nostalgic about the baby season, but at the moment, I am not missing ordering my life around 3 hr feeding schedules and twice daily naps!) Life, here we come!
|the only thing we found to put in this little bug magnifying glass cage was an ant. But man, did Caroline ever love that ant! She screamed with excitement every time she opened it up and let it out. (over and over!)|
I have always been a bit of a conundrum; I love my heels and make-up, but if I go too long without getting dirty in nature, I start to have withdrawals. I love exploring, preferably on foot. State parks are something I really missed in KS, there wasnt much close to where we lived. Every square inch of ground was devoted to farming or cattle. (With a bit left over for hunting ;-).
This park has alot of granite, and some rock climbing areas. Hannah was the only one in our group able to navigate this terrain, but she had fun.
It is a good thing that we are still in tallgrass prairie area here, because Caroline and I would not have been able to do much actual hiking! She wont fit in that for much longer, and then she and Charlie are at an in between. Too old to carry, too young to do much. So we did the 1 mile walking loop. It was enough!
The day started off cold and misty, then got beautiful!
Minnesota may be the land of 10,000 lakes, but this little corner we live in is more plains/midwest than anything else. So the "lake" at this park wasnt exactly breathtaking, but it has miles and miles of walking trails through different terrain, the rock cliffs, the bison, alot of wildflowers, etc. I definitely want to go back on my own for a retreat day. Starbucks and walking around the mall can be nice, but it doesnt hold a candle to the restorative power of a day in a place like this. For me, at least!