Saturday, July 28, 2012

Hovander Park (7.12.12)

Today, I sit in the shade of a beautiful, old tree settled in the grass of Hovander Park. The girls are with me though Krista is off running errands with Grandma. The girls are content. Each has a long-stemmed leaf culled from the grassy floor that they are covering in a thick layer of saliva. Wind rustles the leaves overhead while tractors rumble in the distance.

Fields of Hovander

Our calmness has lured a group of chattering, tiny black birds into our area. The girls stare in amazement as if processing this new language. Xian bounces up and down; Sage begins to eat a leaf.

Grassy lawns are rare in Taiwan and we purposefully left the picnic blanket in the car so that we could sit directly in the grass. The birds flit by a little closer. Xian stares intently at a pair of men sitting on a nearby picnic bench. They speak another language. Russian?

A turkey at the farm animal area

The girls face east where Mt. Baker rises majestically in the distance. Do they see this mountain? What do they make of the scenery, which is so different from Taiwan?

After 30 minutes of content sitting and sliming leaves, Xian finally decides to begin moving. My notebook is her object of interest but she is easily distracted by others in the distance. Sage, who now sits for long periods, blows bubbles until a froth pours down her chin. She gets upset as I pull a leaf out of her mouth. She finally topples but takes the opportunity to begin her yoga routine. Popping up on all fours, she quickly moves through a series of cat-cows before working on her plank and downward dog. Should a baby do this before crawling?

Enjoying leaves

Xian ventures over to my discarded running shoes and socks. The jog when we arrived at the park left them sweaty, and according to the look on her face and quick loss of interest, quite stinky.

Finally, it's time for a snack before we return to meet Mom. Sweet potato puffs are brought out for the girls' enjoyment. Their eating fashions are quite different. Xian employs a precise thumb and fore finger method to quickly get as many into her mouth as possible. Sage eagerly waits for the next step in depth perception to click into place. In the meantime, she goes for the monster grab approach. Hands wide, she attacks the blanket hoping to pick up as many as possible. She then slams her hand against her mouth hoping to deposit a few goodies into her mouth. Her success rate is quite low so Dad often needs to help guide the treats home.

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