by Sara Spock
As I sat at the local park watching my angel playing on the jungle gym, I basked in the glory of the early spring sun and began brainstorming for Earth Day. I try to plan something special for my son and I to do that highlights the importance of giving back to the earth and community.
Last year, we embarked on a nature hike through the Pennsylvania Wilds with recycled bags to collect any trash we could find. We visited the grocery store with the local food bank’s list of needed items and dropped the goods off at the food bank with a home-made treat for the volunteers. We wrapped up the day with a visit to a nature center to learn about local animals, their habitats, and how humans can impact them. As the day drew to a close, my son sighed in the back seat, “I like helping the earth.” I couldn’t have been a prouder mama. I blogged, I facebooked, I bragged to everyone I knew about how I was raising an earth-conscious and friendly 4-year-old.
Armed with how great our day was last year, I thought of ways to top it. Volunteering with the nature center? Picking up a wider swath of forest trash? Visiting the surrounding food banks with goodies and groceries? I reminded my little guy of how much fun we had last year and in full ear shot of the helicopter, tiger, and lawnmower moms that roamed the park, I asked him for suggestions about this year.
“What did you like best about Earth Day last year? What should we do this year?” I asked loudly with sincere anticipation.
“I don’t care, Mom! I just chopped a worm into three pieces and they’re all moving. I think it’s still alive!”
Ah yes. My little tree hugger. At least the flush of fuchsia on my cheeks could be attributed to that early spring sun.
Sara Spock is a mom, wife, anthropology student, lab assistant, English tutor, and freelance writer. When she’s not trying to save the world and feed her kid granola, Sara can be found at the Sex Lab. No, that’s not what we’re calling it these days.