Last week I was having an I Wonder What Kind of Mischief We Can Get Into moment when my friend Amy mentioned she and her son wanted to go to a park.
Alarms went off in my head and I offered the park that is close to our house. I want to assure you I wasn’t being convenient or selfish choosing a place close to my home, but I did have alternate reasons for wanting my friend and her kid to come here. Mwahahaha.
The deal is, right beside the park there is a thick forest that I have been dying to explore since we first moved here over a year ago. It’s so thick though, that there was no way that I was venturing there alone with Anna. I needed an adventure companion, and Amy and son were perfect for the purpose. Mwaaahaaahaaa!
So explore we did. Boy, did we.
We were off to a good start on the playground, when the kids started climbing trees and shortly ran to show us their new friend. Us mothers were thrilled. *shudder*
It took some convincing, but finally the kids let the poor caterpillar run free again. Or slide. Or crawl. Or whatever it is that caterpillars do.
We began walking into the forest and I was feeling more courageous than Davy-friggin’-Crocket. That didn’t last long.
For starters, I can’t even show you what the “path” looked like as we started walking into the woods. I use the word path lightly because there wasn’t one at all. We jumped over, ducked down, skipped and hopped our way to a more walkable part and I couldn’t take any pictures while doing so. My multi-tasking ends when balance-keeping for survival reasons is needed. My apologies.
We found a stream and started following it.
The water looked suspiciously yellowish, but it was beautiful nonetheless.
Along the way we took our time to observe everything around us. This fellow came to say hi:
Oi, you hate spiders? Sorry…
There was a portion of the woods that was flatter and with few trees surrounding it, and that’s were all these ferns were growing. Not only are they perfect anti-spider distractions, but they were also very pretty. It was interesting that we found these since Anna and I had read about them two days before on her Science book. We had the chance to observe how the tips of the ferns were still somewhat coiled, and upon touching them they felt sooooo tender and soft.
As we continued walking we came across the coolest tree trunk ever. Look closely at this picture:
Do you see the marks on the trunk, the shavings on the ground and the shape in which it was cut? What does it spell, BEAVER! Even though we didn’t see the actual beaver anywhere around, just the sight of this tree got me all excited and giddy. Mr. Beaver and I are neighbors.
Walking close to the stream once again, on the mud we saw these:
Gorgeous, clear paw prints. Probably a raccoon’s. There were also bird tracks and what we believe were deer tracks. We aren’t sure about those, but maybe what we’ll do is come back and analyze them better. (Don’t I sound all formal, scientific and stuffs?)
Remember how I mentioned the water in the stream looked suspiciously shady? This was in it:
It’s a dead, belly-up BIG fish. It was at least 30 cm long. What the hell was it doing all on its own in that stream?
Oh, you don’t like dead things? Sorry!
Aren’t they cute?
By the way, is it just me or is it totally unfair that in nature the female has to be always the ugly one? Thank goodness that with humankind we broke that mold 😛
Everything was muddy around us, and something happened:
What you see: Anna’s friend hopping around on one foot because his shoe had gotten stuck in the mud; Anna trying to rescue his shoe and getting stuck herself, waving her arms around trying to keep her balance while both kids shrieked out stuff like “OHNOMYSHOE!!” “I’MGOINGTOFALL!” “HELP!”
What you don’t see: Us mothers laughing our heads off and snapping pictures.
Yes, we were bad mommies. But it was worth it!