As I overheard to Strawberry Shortcake just the other day, I commented on how annoying I found all her berry puns, and here I go using one in the title. :)
Anyway, yesterday Girl 2 helped me gather berries. It was a hot and humid afternoon, so her help was greatly appreciated as it sped things up.
3 things I noted from our time together:
1. She was focused. She is definitely our most, umm, easily-distracted child. She jumps from activity to activity like a butterfly from flower to flower and hasn't the patience for most things that require lengthy focus. But, she worked steadily alongside me for fifteen very-focused minutes. Perhaps it was that it was physical work or that she had the payoff of uninterrupted time by my side, but it was good to see that she can focus in on something when she wants to.
2. About halfway down the patch, she said to me, "Hey, Mom, I was thinking, instead of putting all the bad berries in a pile for the chickens, maybe we can keep the ones with only a little bit of a bad spot and just cut off that part. Less waste that way." I think my heart skipped a beat! It's wonderful to hear your kids apply on their own the philophies you build your house around and hope they're picking up on!
3. As we neared the end of our work, she popped up from her crouched position and exclaimed, "Mom! Look at this one! It's like the perfect berry!" as she held up a big, plump, perfectly red berry, and we both admired it glistening in her little hand under the sunlight. "Can I eat it? Just this one?" And, then I watched as she ate that juicy, perfect berry with such a look of delight and appreciation it made me want to cry.
These are the moments. Just fifteen minutes in the strawberry patch. This life is so fast-paced, but our backyard slows me down a bit. You can't harvest the strawberries quickly. You crouch and cower and rustle through leaves and pick and evaluate. Spending slow time in the backyard with the kids allows for moments like these -- spent picking little treasures out of the strawberry patch.