While I am so so thankful for the parks that dot pretty much every mile of this city, with their metal climbing structures and plastic slides- I have to admit that sometimes it's nice to go to a park without them. While the playgrounds get safer, my boys find no end of physical challenges while climbing trees.
The shade of a willow becomes our house, and an impromptu reenactment of The Three Little Pigs is begun. Sticks become swords and battles are fought.
Small streams become raging rivers. Bushes become hidden caves. Flowers are suddenly secret islands full of treasure.
Every rock is a mountain.
Just waiting to be conquered.
There is always a shady spot, to enjoy an apple and a laugh.
And we come home a few hours later exhausted, and full of adventure, and full of thanks.
Dor bubbling streams (#413), for the wonders of a weeping willow (#414), for stick-swords(#415), and rock-mountains(#416). For living in a city were all of this is just 15 minutes away (#417). For climbing trees (#418), for boys who see trees and bushes and rocks as so soo much more (#419).
And for a lot of other things as well.
Because I'm still finding the hidden grace, and counting 1,000 ways I am blessed. 1,000 things to be thankful for; 1,000 ways I am loved every moment by Love Himself.
400. Strawberry lemonade.
401. Kiddie pools warmed in the sun.
402. Crazy water toys.
403. Homemade strawberry icecream.
404. Dates with my son.
405. Strawberry, raspberry, blueberry cobbler.
406. The "problem" of using up pounds and pounds of homegrown berries.
407. Summer rain.
408. Movie theatres.
409. Giant yellow squash flowers.
410. Green eyes.
411. Curly whirly baby hair.
412. A job for Josh.