This might be a no-brainer to most of you. (That’s why I like hearing so many different kinds of I Said YES stories from all of you!) But as a kid I became somewhat of an environmentalist…passionate about conservation and keeping nature beautiful for years to come. My mom and I refused to buy gas from places that had been responsible for big oil spills and not done a very good job at cleaning up after themselves. We spent as much time as possible camping and hiking and hanging out outside. I would play with sticks and collect rocks and even make little “dams” in the streams, but one thing I almost never did was pick flowers. I knew that once a flower was picked it would die. And I wanted them to be there for other people to enjoy. When I was in high school I was camping with some friends and I actually remember this really sweet guy picking me some wild flowers and instead of taking them and saying thank you and giving him a winning smile, I told him my thoughts on how we should not pick wild flowers. hehe I’m lucky I ever got married. 😉
Since then, I have learned to relax on this topic…although I still believe in respecting our surroundings and leaving things for others to enjoy later. But I want my children to LOVE nature, to enjoy it and truly experience it with all of their senses. One or two flowers out of a whole bunch of flowers being picked are not going to hurt anything and the joy it brings to my daughters is HUGE. Not only does she love picking them and enjoying their beauty, but she loves giving them to people and seeing the joy on their faces when they see the pretty flower.
So now I SAY YES when my kids ask to pick some flowers.
I liked THIS article that I found on pinterest and the article that she linked to. “Leave-no-trace can wait. For now, throw rocks, pick flowers, be wild.” You can see why it caught my eye. Check it out and let me know what you think.
I was thinking about it and it’s like buying a child a china tea set and telling them they can only look at it. Toys are meant to be played with. This beautiful world was meant to be lived in…to be experienced…to be enjoyed. I love getting off the trail to find the perfect “thinking spot” by a creek or a cool rock to climb or the perfect swimming hole. I don’t know that I’d love nature as much if I hadn’t been allowed to explore it and really enjoy it. That being said, (warning…rabbit trail…) I don’t condone just anything in the name of enjoyment. If you’re going to drink beer as you float the river (I’ve always questioned the cleverness of this choice…hanging out in a place where there’s a slight chance of drowning and doing it while intoxicated…) I sure hope you make sure to get all of your beer cans out of the water. And on and on. You know what I mean 😉 I don’t think this is only applicable to nature, although it might have a more negative affect in nature. We should just all be respectful and clean up after ourselves and be nice to the things around us.
We veered off the flower picking topic a bit and the I Said YES post (and sort of turned into a Children in Nature post), but the blog post I linked too was related and had gotten me thinking 🙂