Friday, May 10, 2013

A Different Kind of Beauty

I have been evaluating life lately. This pattern of self-evaluation began half-heartedly a couple of months ago and continued in full measure after General Conference. There are at least three posts that will illustrate the point my life is at now because of these reflections. I think I will write them in counter-chronological order (like counter-clockwise?).

I begin with today. 

Let's just say I've made a goal to DO things more often. It's not just about getting out of the house (because grocery shopping doesn't count). It's about doing something fun. Making memories. 

Incidentally, did you know that many languages don't even have a word for fun? I've asked several native Arabic speakers how they would translate an American's "fun," and they have been unable to find a close equivalent in Arabic. (To any Arabic-speakers out there, I do realize that English-Arabic dictionaries do give an Arabic word for fun. It's just....a little different somehow.) 

Now that I've said that, my goal to have more fun seems indulgent. But I believe that removing myself from drudgery once in a while will make a big difference in the quality of my relationships with others, in my sense of satisfaction from life, and in my feelings of accomplishment and growth. 

Today's something fun was taking advantage of the free admission to our local botanical garden in honor of National Public Garden Day. We have never been and we thoroughly enjoyed our morning. We packed Madelyn into the baby carrier and set off through the blooming desert "garden." It was beautiful. 

This sign said "What is a Cactus?" Dave and I both decided it was a good question and
leaned forward to read the answer. As you can see, the answer wasn't entirely helpful. 

Yes, I completely love this. 

Apparently some cacti grow hair for the same reason humans grow hair:
to shade themselves from the heat! Who would have guessed??
It was butterfly season, so Dave patiently waited in line for the butterfly house while I ran to the restroom to feed Madelyn. When I came out, I found Dave near the front of the line surrounded by about six other smiling men and women (all grandmas and grandpas), looking at me expectantly as I walked up. They had wondered about David's empty baby carrier and, since Dave makes friends with people wherever he goes, were now enthusiastically awaiting my return so they could meet the little one herself. She was showered with praise and affection as soon as we reached them. She lapped it up!

The butterfly house was cool, misty and filled with butterflies! Madelyn's visual acuity isn't developed enough for her to see most of the butterflies, but she was eventually able to focus in on some of the slower butterflies, or the ones that stayed still on a flower near enough for her to see. A butterfly landed on her hat but of course she had no idea, so when it jumped onto my camera instead, I was able to hold it in front of her face and let her watch it for a moment. So fun. I should mention that it was great fun for David and me as well. Butterflies are quiet, delicate and beautiful creatures. 

Hard to see among the flowers, but there are at least four in this picture.

Finally able to focus in on one that looks just like the white flowers around it.

Just to prove the camera-woman was there too.

Our own little bug.

The botanical gardens were too large to explore fully today, but we had a nice time wandering some of their desert loops. I have always believed Arizona has one of the prettiest deserts in the world, and the botanical gardens do a very good job of highlighting that beauty. 

Love this.


Laura, RN said...

Um, I agree that the deserts of Arizona are beautiful, but the funnest thing to look at on your blog is Madelyn. I just can't get over her : )

Becky Sue said...

Loved this. Love you. Love your baby. And my brother too of course. :)

Post a Comment