When I was a child my summers were spent splashing through the creek with my siblings. It flowed through the valley just below our house, and it was a wonderful playground. Over a hundred years ago, Native Americans had built their encampments on the banks, and so the local settlers gave it the name Indian Creek. I remember hearing the stories my great grandmother told about those days. She could remember as a child seeing the squaws sitting cross-legged on the banks, braids hanging down their backs as they wove baskets from the reeds that grew along the stream. The children played by the waters edge while the men sat higher up the hill in the village, chiseling arrowheads. The village and it's people were long gone by the time I started playing in the flowing waters, but I spent many hours exploring the banks, searching for Indian treasure, and imagining what that life must have been like. It was an idyllic way to spend the summer, and now that I am a mother, I appreciate it even more. My son William is just about the age I was in those summer memories of mine, and I want him to experience summers like I did. We have a pond that sits below our house, just like the creek did at my childhood home. In the summer we like to go there when we feel the need to escape the real world. It occurred to me the other day that the pond has become for Will what the creek was for me--a summer playground. The abundant rainfall we've had has turned our little pond into a thriving ecosystem, complete with lush cattails, fat bullfrogs, birds nesting in the grass, and cool, clean water. Cleo the Egyptian goose has made it her home, and she spends her days gracefully gliding through the reeds. She follows right along with Will as he splashes around, explores the banks, and searches for treasure in the reeds. And when things quieten down, we sit on the banks and look across the field toward the holler where my great grandmother was raised. And as I tell him the stories that have been passed down in our family for generations, we lean back, close our eyes and let our imaginations run wild...
Lazy Summer Days
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