Welcome to my Central Florida Garden Blog where we garden combining Florida natives, Florida-Friendly plants, and tropicals.
Friday, July 30, 2010
Making Summer Memories That Count
"Grandmother is a state of grace, a chance to be a child again, to be whimsical, to dance, to sing, to explore, to believe, and to scatter your love, like glistening drops of warm spring rain, onto your grandchildren."
One of the most glorious parts of summertime is having more time with the grandbabies. None of which are babies in the slightest way anymore with the youngest one being 4 years old.
Extended stays at Mimi's and Papa's are calendared once school ends to be sure we have longer, uninterrupted days together ~~ especially with the two older ones. Randomly visits are a result of whims and wishes and spur of the moment requests.
Our doors are always open ~~however they get here is just fine with us.
This time of year butterflies are as much a part of the garden as the plants. Drawn by bright colors and the nectar they seek and often times their host plants we get very used to sharing our outdoor experiences with them.
Children are equally as fascinated with them as adults. They sure do provide easy conversation for young, bright minds to engage in learning the processes of life in a garden.
And sharing the Agastache 'Black Adder' are all sorts of flying critters. Some we can identify and some we don't. One thing for sure is that with summertime temps all sorts of God's creatures can be 'seen' and 'heard' all over the garden. And smart little minds and hearts are very keen to 'listening' as well as 'seeing'. Always they are eager to identify and determine which are harmful or helpful. These are good things to know when pouncing about the garden.
What excitements have been stirred as we've discovered so many caterpillars in every stage.
Passion vine, parsley, bronze fennel and dill all being chewed to pieces as host plants.
Everyday lessons from the garden full with the journey that growing habits of each creature affords and the meaning of transformation being understood in deeper ways.
Dragonflies have been overly abundant this year. This being my own observation with absolutely no science involved. But I've asked around and other gardeners in this area agree. There hasn't been a definitive reason why but we are certain the increase in numbers is not just our imagination.
Every imaginable color, too. My littlest fellow helped me take a photo of this golden beauty.
He is my 'number one bug finder' and 'curious mind for all things buggy' extraordinaire. He thrills at the sight of a bug we haven't seen yet. "Mimi, get your camera. I found a bug."
Without the magnification of the camera lens this miniscule spider appeared to have only four legs. But we knew it couldn't be so because "spiders have EIGHT legs."
This from a four year old.
There is something about water ~~ any source of water ~~ that draws children to touch it/ feel it/play with it if possible. An easily accessible faucet in the back garden provides a watering source for both plantlife and the humans who tend it. What starts out as "Can I help you water, Mimi?" often turns into wet shoes and clothes. In summertime when every living thing is steamy and hot it matters not.
Empty water bottles re-filled with water and dirt over and over again makes for many minutes of entertainment while Mimi gets some actual gardening accomplished.
Lots of toad frogs doing their helpful deeds. Hoping they are enjoying the abundance of slugs and snails offered in every border.
Not our favorite critters but frustratingly frequent visitors. Armadillos have wreaked their fair share of mayhem in the summer garden. These smaller ones haven't been taught very well yet. They shouldn't be out in broad daylight. Their youthful inexperience does make it easy to see how they bury their noses deep into the soil and then tunnel around searching out worms and other crawly fare.
Mimi doesn't like anything about them but the kiddos think its great to see them scamper as they run through the pathways and surprisingly discover the night creatures are out during the day.
Summer is for taking advantage of relaxed school schedules and creating memories that make a difference in every heart. The garden offers a perfect resource and naturally accommodates curious and investigative young souls. What a blessing it is to have the privilege of being such an integral part of our grandchildren's lives. They make our hearts sing and our world spin with joy!
Shhhh... all three of them are still sound asleep after long days of swimming, board games, golf, scrapbooking, and simply laughing until we can't breathe.