I took Clara to one of our favorite spots along the Boise River that's easy to get to. It's a perfect little spot to escape right in the middle of it all. Although hotels and busy roads surround this spot, once your down on the beach, among the trees, and flowing water, barefoot, connecting to earth, it all melts away. It's also a great spot during late summer to be able to get in the river and play. The water is slow in quite a few places, and in some areas you can just walk for quite awhile through the water. It feels instantly good, which is why I took her.
We both were feeling under the weather; runny noses, lethargic, achy, but kinda stir crazy in the house. She was fussy and wanted to be outside, so I loaded her up in the car and headed for Eagle.
We watched honey bees buzz around purple flowering bushes. I love to watch honey bees, it's really meditative, and such good energy to be around. We watched ducks, threw rocks and sticks, and splashed around. We spent about an hour and half there, and when we left, we both felt better, in a sense of being more relaxed, and ready to go home and rest.
This girl loves rocks. Everywhere we go, she seems to find rocks, and on a rock beach, well then it's all about finding "the one." She was standing in this bush, just standing in it, calm, looking around, touching the long grass, and then her attention shifted. She spotted a rock she had to pick up.
At this point, my brother had called me while he was on his way home from work, which the road he takes happens to go by where we were. So he stopped to visit for a bit. He asked her if he could see the rock, and she was adamant about not sharing her rock with him. The look she gave him was priceless.
"But sweetie, it's just water, it'll dry, this is what happens when you splash in the water."
She had fun splashing, but wasn't happy to get her pretty dress wet. She's so cute. She's been here before in her swimsuit, and regular tank tops, but it bothered her when her dress got wet. She understands the difference between her "nice" clothes and"play" clothes, even though it's not something I really say or instruct her on. It's just something that's part of who she is. She doesn't like to get things like her dresses dirty, but put her in a tank top and shorts, and she's good to go to get dirty. it cracks me up, such a girlie girl, and I love it. I assured her it was okay that her dress got wet, and then she was back to playing.
She cried to uncle that her dress was wet, not being able to talk yet, she held out her dress, distressed, and he assured it was ok, too.
After playing in the water, we explored a little cozy nook with lots of bushes, bugs, and tall trees. She is always so amazed at the size of the trees. I hope by next year we can take her to the Redwoods. I just know it'll be so magical for her.
After standing in awe of the tree, she started talking to it, and even went to hug it. It was precious, and I missed getting a shot of her hugging, because I was just sitting there in the dirt, washed over in so much love for her when I saw her do that. Such a gentle soul, and I get to be her mommy. I feel so blessed.
She babbled to the tree for a few moments. My brother and I both laughed quietly as we watched her standing there, her hands behind her back, chatting away to a big tree. I unfortunately was quite sore, and sat there enjoying the moment, rather than moving to capture it better. I move much slower these days, and she is quite quick. Sometimes not everything gets caught by camera, but that's okay. It's part of why I like to blog too, so I can share the whole stories that take place.
When her conversation with the tree ended she wanted to go explore into this nook more. I encouraged her to go on. She was uncertain at first. I was happy to just let my stiff, sore body sit on the ground, and allow her space to be herself in nature. She ran back to me to kiss me, grab her bunny, and then she went looking around. My brave, sweet, wild child, I adore you so.
High School Begins
HOW DO I HAVE A HIGH SCHOOLER?!
William started high school about 3 weeks ago. I took him and Clara for registration day and I felt so many emotions. I love how excited he is to be in high school, but so sad that my baby boy isn't a baby, and really hasn't been for so long, but now he's taller than me, stronger than me, and mouthy, but not mouthier than me, hahaha.
I took him out shopping for a suit recently because he asked a girl out to the homecoming dance. She seemed excited to go, but then this last last week told him she decided she doesn't want to go to the dance. He was sad about it, because I guess he's liked her since middle school. It's not easy seeing him grow up. I mean of course I want to see him grow up, and I'm enjoying it, but he just asked a girl out to his first high school dance and already feeling the blues of a girl changing her mind and not wanting to g out with him. Which made me think of how hard it'll be to see him when he goes through his first heartbreak. I mean he was a bit sad that the girl isn't going with him now, but you know what I mean, when he actually starts dating a girl, and that inevitable first crushing heartbreak of highschool happens. My heart isn't ready for him to be a teenager in highschool, but because I'm a mom, my heart is also ready to be there for him for whatever he needs and to love him and encourage him through everything that comes up with highschool.
He joined Junior Air Force ROTC. I'm over the moon about this decision he made. I was in both Navy and Army ROTC in high school and they are hands down the best memories of high school that I have. There's nothing that compares to my memories of ROTC in high school. I loved the program, my friends, the teams, competitions, trips, the pride I took in my uniform, and being a part of something, a tribe so to speak. I found my people in high school. William was really inspired when we toured the Mountain Home Air Force Base for an Idaho William video we made years ago. He has said since then that he really wants to join the Air Force, so when he learned his high school has a JAFROTC he lit up.
He's joined color guard, drill team, and rocket team. I can't wait to see him compete and be in parades, and tell me about all the fun stuff he is doing in the program. I love to hear about the new kids he's meeting through the program. I stopped in to mee this instructors this week. We talked about thier JAFROTC program, the things coming up for the school year,and about my experienced in ROTC. They welcomed me to come by anytime to take pictures of William during practice and his teams. And again, in one breath I'm so happy for William, and then my thoughts trail off to if he joins the military, and how that's only four short years away. Don't even me get me going. For now, I just have to parent him through high school. Let's just stay in the present now, because that's a lot as it is.
William had a super tough time with middle school, but it's clear to both of us that high school is going to be exceptionally better for him, and I totally relate. Middle school sucked, and I think most people can agree middle school years are tough, and high school is a whole different and better ball game. ;)
Our 3rd wedding anniversary was August 11, and we decided the best way to celebrate was to take our little girl to a dinosaur exhibit. Clara LOVES dinos. We love to see her happy and smile. I was a little concerned that they might be too realistic and scary looking, but she's got her mommy's DNA, and loves dinosaurs just like I did.
When we got there the building was dark. The only light coming into the Nampa, Idaho Ford Center was from the daylight outside the open doors, and as we made our way in, it was lit by dark colored lights. She could barely contain herself when she spotted the first dinosaur. And within a few seconds she saw the T-Rex. She went running right for it and squared off with it! She squawked at it and roared. It was hilarious and so brave.
She ran all over, so excited and wanting to see every dinosaur as fast as she could. Waving her hands for us to follow her, pointing up at each dino. To say she loved the Jurassic Tour is an understatement. We stayed for hours, just walking around, back and forth to each dinosaur on display. We stayed until she could barely keep her eyes open. It was so much fun for her, which made it fun for us.
There was a triceratops ride, but she only wanted to pet it, not ride it The man working the rides area was really kind. She was too intimidated to ride and we had bought tickets for her. So instead of her riding, he let her come back as often as she liked to pet the Triceratops. We gifted two tickets to a family entering the building when we left.
A "dino band" played near the sand boxes for excavating bones, and a bounce runway. Once she saw the dino band there was no going anywhere for a long time. She kept her face through the fence to watch them play, and danced around. This girl loves music and dancing. If she hears music it'll stop her in her tracks and she will break out dancing.
We took her to buy something from the gift area. She picked out a Triceratops push toy, and walked her new baby around to see all the dinosaurs. She spent a lot of time showing her baby triceratops to the big triceratops on display. It was darling.
We'll probably take her again next year. As long as the magic is there for her, we will encourage it, because that's one of the best parts of being a kid and a parent is to take moments to appreciate imagination, play, and magic.
A link to our dino garden with macro shots: https://www.allisonattitude.com/blog/how-to-build-a-dinosaur-garden-during-naptime