It’s March Break. In my past life, that generally involved sun, surf and sand. And a good book. And a piña colada. But this year, I am spending March Break in Paris. (The close one, not the fancy one). But really, if no one had told me, I wouldn’t even know that it’s March Break. And yet, now that I know, I feel like we are supposed to be making meaningful memories for our child. The pressure is on. We can’t settle for Paw Patrol and puddles. It’s March Break, after all.
There isn’t really a lot going on this week. The girls have orthodontist appointments. We have Airbnb guests staying with us. Russ is teaching because it's not March Break at the university. Yoga was cancelled, Nana is sick and any of our normal play structure haunts are over-run with big kids. And the weather, so magically delicious last week, has turned decidedly English on us. We have London’s weather, in Paris. On gray days such as these, one of my favourite escapes has always been to the greenhouse. They are wonderful places to run to when everything outside is dead and colourless. Any greenhouse will typically do, but today we went to our favourite - Walter’s.
I love Walter’s. Henry loves Walter’s. Who wouldn’t love Walter’s? Right now, the air there is fresh with the scent of hyacinths and dirt. There is colour everywhere and plenty of space to run. One of us welcomed everyone who came in with a loud “HELLO! I’M HAVING FUN!!!!” That very same little person also selected a bright yellow rake and marched it around the entire store, telling all passersby that it was a shovel. Only one very serious gentleman corrected him sternly, saying “It’s a rake, young man. NOT a shovel.” We pushed a cart all over the place, careening past succulents and topiaries. Henry made his first and last impulsive grab at a cactus (lesson learned). We oohed and ahhed over the teeny, tiny little tidbits that go into a miniature faerie garden. And then we got to do one of the garden crafts that they are featuring at Walter’s this week, in honour of March Break.
The flower pot person project was far too advanced for Henry, but the Mason jar terrarium was exactly up his alley. It was the perfect activity for a 2-year-old who loves to get dirty, methodically scooping stones and dirt into a jar. Of course, as a toddler, he was compelled to do it over and over again. Scoop, fill, empty, repeat. The young lady who was working the craft station was very patient and I was very appreciative. When he finally had enough stones and dirt in his jar, she popped in a little ivy plant, helped him scoop in some coloured sand, and let him select a little ceramic frog to go in on top. He now has his very own plant in his bedroom to talk to and nurture - a plant that he "made" all by himself.
Meaningful memories – CHECK.
Kari Raymer Bishop
Lover of Jesus, cheeses and tropical breezes... seeking balance in life, even as I embrace new challenges and chase new dreams. I am wife, mother, daughter and friend, as well as teacher, entrepreneur, activist, writer, beekeeper and hostess. Come along on the journey through my long-awaited midlife crisis!