I say "sit" spot as this is what I had in mind upon introducing this little gem of a natural setting to my children. I envisioned a quiet, slow entry coupled with keen observation, and amazing discoveries. It turns out that though I feel pretty tuned into my children, and where they are developmentally, they have much to teach me and I have much to learn.
I am learning to use my own keen observation skills. I am learning the balancing act of "teaching" or sharing all that I know (or can quickly learn) and letting natural childhood curiosity and open minds do the enjoyable work of discovering. It is exciting business, this mamahood is. I find it challenging to know when to hold back. It's fantastic to share, with those I love the most, what I have learned somewhere along my own journey through life.
Looking back through the chapters it is clear that the things I really learned were mostly about real life, the life that spoke to me, that captivated my imagination, sparked my curiosity and beckoned me to find answers, to dive deeper. Only then did I commit these learned bits to the true layers of my being, like chapters in a book written in permanent ink.
I am learning, learning, to guide my children, and provide many opportunities for observation, curiosity, imagination, spark, drive and hopefully knowledge of their own, really their own.
We may not spend as much time "sitting" as I had thought, but we are doing a lot of discovering. Monday is no longer "Monday", we now have "Bayday". We plan to spend each Bayday afternoon for an entire year, in the same location down by the bay, rain or shine, windy, foggy or blazing. One place to return to over and over again; one place to mark the changing tides and seasons; one place to mark the passing of a year, and the growth of ourselves.
Chaz has every berry mapped in his mind as well as their current state of ripeness. Returning each week to find the prized only ripe berry in the patch. He now knows this berry patch and all it's intricacies, the particular spiders that occupy this spot, what they catch in their webs, how the bees from the nearby hive enjoy the berry flowers as much as he enjoys the berry. He knows each tiny path through the patch. He knows, in his body, exactly what the grasp of these branching brambles feel like, wrapped around his leg. Most importantly, he knows, despite the grasp of the bramble, the sweetness of the berries, even if they only ripen one a week. And, I know that this sweetness will remind him of childhood, always.
For these boys, I have many wishes, but this one is all his own, and I can only wonder.
In dreaming up this portion of our year, I have found my own wonderful guidance in the following books:
Wishing you many adventures with those you love.
What adventures have you been enjoying? Let me know in the comments. I would be thrilled to hear from you!