Loving Trees – a guest post from Be a Fun Mum

This is a guest post brought to you from the lovely (and very fun!) Be a Fun Mum. Ever since I discovered her blog last year I’ve been honoured to count Kelly as one of my friends. Her blog is filled with refreshing ideas on how to be a fun mum – you’ll love it, promise. 
Loving Trees
As a child, I always thought of trees as kind – I still do. Kind, wise, steadfast and majestic; I wonder at the stories they could tell! They whisper, don’t they? Trees were a big part of my growing up: my ticket to the garage roof cubby, a refuge when I felt sad or lonely and a never-ending source of creative inspiration.  The only time I fell from a tree when was when I was nine.

Living in a remote village in Papua New Guinea at the time meant outdoor play made up a huge chunk of each day and schooling: only 3 hours. When I think, I see it as one of the best periods in my wonderful childhood. And yet, there was no television, limited electricity, very few toys and restricted food choices (a treat was a teaspoon of milo).  I remember this time in my life and remind myself: kids don’t need a lot of material things to be happy.

On this particular muggy day, my three sisters and I gathered around the base of a guava tree.  As we looked up in the branches, we saw few ripe guavas up high in the tree. As I sit here and type this, I still remember the slightly bitter tang of the green skin and the mild but sweet pink flesh.   As usual, my sisters and I were soon joined by a few local children.  We were quite a novelty, being one of very few white people in the village.

(image credit)

From my vantage point in the tree, I could see a plump and juicy guava, and I was determined reach it to give to our small friends.  I leaned just a little too far, and in a moment of panic, I fell and hit the ground hard, landing on my stomach. I tried to scream, but no sound came.  I thought I was going to die, but soon, my mother was there, and my lungs allowed for small breaths once again.  No broken bones, just a very sore stomach plus a few scapes and bruises.  A fear of climbing trees may have been natural consequence following this incident, but I wasn’t afraid. I continued to climb and love trees.  Still do.

My love for trees links my childhood to my present and I find myself yearning to foster creative fun for my children surrounding trees.  Together, we discovered that trees can be artists; used milk bottle lids to make mini homes in the branches; put patty cases on leaves for fairy plates; and created a magical rainbow tree with streamers.

Especially for Documenting Delight, I’m sharing more tree fun in the form of branch decoration.   This is an easy and cheap project that turns a low tree branch into a magical space for play.

What you need

PVA Glue

Glue on gems (you can buy packets from craft or discount stores)

What we did

I wish I could show you how her eye’s sparkled as she held the pretty things in her still chubby hands.

She counts to ten as she holds the gem onto the glue. “…five…”

Together, they decorate.

Early the next morning, in flannelette PJs and gumboots, the kids rush out to see how the gems dried overnight.

“Oh MUM! It’s so beautiful,” Miss 6 said. “We shall call it The Magical Tree.”

The exclamation was followed by play.

Now, every time I drive in our driveway, I spot the bright jewels through the branches, and it makes me smile. Every time.  We may just add to the bling, bit by bit.

Ah yes, it’s a good thing to reinvent childhood, with our own kids.  It’s trees for me.

 

8 Responses to “Loving Trees – a guest post from Be a Fun Mum”

  1. gravatar for Belinda Belinda

    What a great idea. My sons preschool has a tree in their playground where they have attached a heap of odd shoes and boots. It is a great talking point with the children and is used to heap settle down children who are upset. My son continually wants to donate one of his shoes to the tree and I have always said no, but after reading your post, I think I might have to help him find a shoe we can donate.

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  2. gravatar for Rhiannon Rhiannon

    What a beautiful idea! We don’t have any nice trees on our little block, but I think we will have to try this on something!

    Reply
  3. gravatar for Naomi Naomi

    I love trees and I love this guest post,cause it reminds me of my own childhood so much. My siblings and I grew up in different African countries, where we had very few toys, but we had our imagination and loads of nature to explore. We climbed trees, made huts in and underneath them, picked fruit from the branches and just loved and appreciated all the wonders that the green world around us had to offer. My childhood has given me an enormous love and respect for trees and plants, I often stand still in the middle of a busy day to listen to the wind playing with the leaves or to marvel about sunlight spilling through the branches of the beautiful trees in my neighborhood. I think it’s great to let kids experience how wonderful trees are and to show them that playing outside is so much fun. Thanks for this lovely guest post!

    Reply
  4. gravatar for Most Delightful 30 Minutes This Week | Be A Fun Mum Most Delightful 30 Minutes This Week | Be A Fun Mum

    […] This particular tree is an important instrument in my children’s childhood and I can see that.  I remember such trees in my own memories.  In this particular tree, I’ve put in Fairy Door at the base, streamers grace the branches from time to time, we even did some tree art (this tree drew a picture for us — true story!), milk bottle lids made mini cubby homes on the branches, plus (a favourite!) the children and I decorated some of the branches with sparky gems (you can read more about that in my guest post on Documenting Delight). […]

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