Thursday, April 22, 2010

Earth Day

Miles and I celebrated his first Earth Day on a walk.

I should note that I am of the mindset that every day should be Earth Day since this little blue marble is the most important thing we have (share)... but, it was the perfect reason to head outdoors and revel in Mother Nature's bounty.

As we stepped outside I was excited to see that the Lily of the Valley by the back door have suddenly popped open. The white bells were all green recently when I checked them. Today they were brimming with the intoxicating smell that screams, "Summer is almost here!" As I knelt down to shove my face into the little LOV forest, it occurred to me, Miles has never smelled one before!

And so the marathon of "firsts" this year continues. When I put it up to his nose he looked at me quizzically, and thoughtfully, and then smiled a shy kind of smile - kind of like we were sharing a secret. As we walked on we came to a lilac bush, also bursting with fragrance, and I shared another "first" with him.

As we walked I found myself just mesmerized by the colors (or maybe it was all that intoxicating perfume). I guess that is what a long gray city winter will do to you... the explosion of colors in early summer is almost overwhelming. There were cardinals flying around and robins hunting hungrily on green lawns. Then the colors of all the blossoms and blooms - tulips, lilacs, young maple leaves, vibrant dandelions, glowing dogwood blossoms, redbuds, and quince (to name a few).

My mother is a talented painter and I sometimes try to see the world as she does - as blocks of color - each combination a still life in itself. Today the whole world seemed to be a painting unfolding before our eyes.

If you can believe it, along our walk, on a side street I have never ventured down before - I looked down and I saw this stone set into someone's garden. Fitting, considering these very words have been on my mind lately!

I do love this Earth, this home we have been gifted for our time here. Having moved back from the high desert I have a new appreciation for the four seasons as we experience them here in Michigan. I am constantly in awe of nature and I do hope my passion is passed on to my son. I have a favorite quote that I often refer to when people ask me why I went back to school to become a teacher. The environmentalist Rachel Carson said that, “If a child is to keep alive his inborn sense of wonder he or she must have the companionship of at least one adult who can share it, rediscovering with him the joy, the excitement, and the mystery of the world we live in.”

I aim to be that companion, especially for Miles. When I look at my son I am even more devoted to my passion to teach children about the wonders of our world! Those little hands and growing minds are quite literally the keepers of our future.

So happy Earth Day to you. Let's LOVE this planet today and every day!

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