Coop today was at a member's house, and the kids chose between spending time with the horses and taking a creek walk. Ani chose the latter, and I went along...big surprise there, huh?It was beautiful and lush......we found Jack-in-the-Pulpits and Ginseng...crawdads and salamanders...
Ani chatted the whole time as she and I and our host meandered slowly, letting the rest of the kids charge on ahead, led by his two boys. She was so happy - she told me, Mama, this is my kind of nature, as she marched ahead in her boots.
This was a relief, as the last time we went for a hike - with Dan at Fox Lake - she was getting tired and cranky and was expressing her frustrations of the day by "testing" me...it went something like this (as we walked in an otherwise quiet woods, save for the wood thrush trilling its magic):
Mama, you really love nature, don't you?
Oh, you got that right, Ani. I really really do. (deep inhalation)
I hate nature. Hear me Mama? I hate nature.
Yeah, I hate nature, and I think we should shoot some fish.
Wow. You know, there are better ways to catch fish...(I digress into the many diverse ways a person may go about catching a fish...my distraction tactic seems to work)
You know, there are things I igmire about the woods. Igmire. Igmire. What is that word?
Um...I'm wondering if you mean "admire"? Something you like about the woods?
Yeah, admire, there are things I admire about the woods, like how quiet it is. And it's green, I like green.
Yeah, me too, Ani. I like green too.