Running Naked Through Sprinklers

It is HOT here. Hot in Arizona, but we aren’t in Phoenix or Tucson. We are in northern AZ, Flagstaff, Grand Canyon area. We’re in the mountains – it’s SUPPOSED to still be cool and nice. The last five or six years though, we have reached highs in mid-summer of near 100 degrees. That was unheard of fifteen years ago. So it’s hot.

And you will likely hear me whine about it quite a bit.

But one thing that has me smiling is watching my little one start to recognize the change in season. She is picking out her dresses every morning (as only a two-year old can do – awesome combinations of patterns and colors that only a child can wear and still look cute!) and lovin’ wearing her little pink Crocs. The days are longer and so warm that she can play outside until almost bedtime.

It reminds me of my childhood. But with one big exception. I feel badly that she will never run through sprinklers, in her swimsuit, or again, like all two-year olds, happily naked without a worry in the world, feet wet in the soft, sweet-smelling grass. Because you see, we don’t have grass. We have dirt and woodchips and cactus (yeah, even in the mountains). The only grass that would take root here would be the course, stuff that grows in clumps and thrives in the arid climate. I feel a tremendous guilt sometimes that she will never romp wild and free and BAREFOOT outside.

Now let me digress for a moment. We live in a spectacular place – truly. We have Flagstaff, AZ, Grand Canyon National Park, Williams, Sedona, Prescott and more. We have mountains and canyons. Views are breathtaking. Kids can grow up hiking and biking and enjoying the outdoors in a clean environment, breathing clean, relatively unpolluted air. It IS a great place to grow up. It is very different than my memories, but wonderful.

But still, no grass. No sprinklers. No running carefree through the water all day.

Except Sunday, we were invited to a friend’s house. I was advised we should bring her swimsuit and I thought she’d splash in a kiddy pool for awhile, then get all covered in the AZ mud that takes so long to scrub off because of it’s sticky resiliency. Ah well, if it makes her happy…

When we arrived I was surprised to see that our friend’s driveway had been turned into (sans grass) the play area of my youth. A HUGE sprinkler was set up for the kids to run through. Big towels and blankets spread out for relaxation (many layers because, hey, they WERE on hot asphalt, but still). The Moms hung out drinking cold drinks while the kids played. For hours. Running and squealing through the water, which in the desert they don’t get very often. The joy on my daughter’s face made me realize that it doesn’t matter if she has the east cost, grassy memories of MY youth.
She is happy. She is growing. She loves the experiences SHE is having, and that is what truly matters.

And sure, eventually some of the kids DID run naked through the sprinklers (but they were wearing their Crocs)!

__________________Art imitates life, and life imitates art.

What I see every day influences what I create, so writing this blog and creating my designs are natural extensions of who I am.

If you are interested in viewing my designs, primarily for kids but also some cool stuff for adults and also doggies (who we all know are integral parts of all families) check them out at:
http://www.cafepress.com/sugarsprouts

See you around the mountains and canyons of northern AZ!

“If you don’t laugh at life, it sneaks up and bites you in the ass!”

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