On Friday my son's playschool came for a picnic in our garden. It all started with an innocent comment from the teacher about her not being sure what to plant in a neglected spot in her garden and me being, well me, rambling on about plants and suggestions for a little too long. She then put two and two together and realised that I like gardening and suggested the picnic to some moms and before I knew it, it was a done deal. The idea was for them to just roam freely for a few hours and to have some fun. A bit of a shuffle on the roster and it also became my son's turn at being the 'baker of the week'. Suddenly I had an excuse to make little hamburgers served alfresco under the trees; I was in my element.
Our garden is a bit bigger than normal (I guess it would pass as a park in most towns and that is me trying very hard not to boast). We are in fact a very lucky family. And it is the ideal place for kids to give free reigns to their imagination. It has a network of pathways, large grass lawns under shade trees and a play area with jungle gyms, a little dolls' house build from local stone and lots of flowers every where. Also, the vegetable garden is overflowing with produce, which gave the stadsjapies (city kids) a chance to see that carrots do not come from bags in Woolworths.
For some reason I thought I might need an incentive to lure them away from the play area into the unfamiliar (read: Needed an excuse to bake). So, I expanded on the idea of an easter egg hunt and baked some cookies, which I iced like little spring flowers. These went into little bags, which were tied with ribbon onto low branches all over the garden.
They were out of the cars in seconds, accompanied by the usual din and as expected, they all went for the play area. But, with a little prodding from E, they soon started the cookie hunt and what fun they had. Their energy was infectious! They returned, red cheeked, about an hour later with their loot, or what was left of it and could not stop chatting, laughing, running.
Lunch followed and then a little tour of the veg garden and the green houses.
After they left, my little boy gave me a huge hug and many, many kisses and just laughed. The perfect ending to a wonderful day!