picnics

Yesterday was the last of my school holiday days at home with Juniordwarf. It seems like these holidays have flown by. While they are a week shorter than we’re used to, due to Tasmania’s move to a four-term year, the holiday period has gone by in a flash. Next Tuesday Juniordwarf will be back at school.
He’s had a fairly full-on month, with his grandmother lining up a vast array of activities for him on the days he was with her, including the circus, horse riding and activities on the beach. He’s done guest appearances on Slabs’ Monday afternoon radio shows and had a playdate with a school friend.
So this week we took things easy. 
Yesterday, after our trip to the Child and Family Centre, we had a picnic in a nearby park. We were accompanied by some of Juniordwarf’s teddies. I thought he might take one or two when he said that some teddies would come with us, but he said no, he’d be taking 16 of them. 
If you ever wanted to know how many teddies you can fit in two of the thinner green bags, the answer is 16.
Fortunately they brought their own food and I didn’t have to cater for 16 teddies.
Yesterday, I vaguely thought it might be fun to go to the beach. (Thinking of something to do and then actually getting out of the house and doing it on the same day is a rare combination for me.) Let’s just forget about the weather forecast for rain. We are going to have fun.
Juniordwarf has been getting into a Hi 5 DVD that he borrowed from the library, where the presenters create their own imaginary place out of all the places they’d like to be. 
Snowy mountains on a beach on a tropical island? Yep, Hi 5 can make it happen. It’s called Beach Island (or something like that). In his version, the chooks are seagulls, and he makes snowballs by stripping plants of their leaves.
Following this, he hides “jellyfish treasure” in the garden and we go and look for it.
So, I wondered, would he like to go to the beach and look for treasure? After a bit of consideration he decided that yes, he would.
We packed up another picnic and he put his treasure that he was going to hide for us into the basket he uses to collect the eggs, collected Zoe from her shop, and off we went.
We went to Cornelian Bay, which is not the beachiest of beaches, so our beach treasure hunt was more of a woodland treasure hunt. What this meant was that I had to look away while Juniordwarf hid the treasure he’d brought with him. This consisted of some plastic toast, a plastic mug, a spatula and the basket, which we then had to search for. He was delighted when we found something.
 After finding all the treasure, we went for a short walk along the Boat Shed track. 


Juniordwarf picked up a few more treasures along the way – a huge oyster shell, a stripy stone and some pretty feathers – and then it was time to head back for our picnic.
By this stage the promised rain was starting to get a bit heavier, so we sought out the tree with the thickest cover to set up the picnic under. We were immediately discovered by seagulls, which distressed Juniordwarf at first. But even thought they looked menacing, they didn’t come too close and he eventually relaxed.
Most of them left eventually, leaving just one, who I presume was the scout that would signal the others if there was any sign we were going to send any food its way. 
Once we started packing up it too left, disappointed.
I was glad that something so simple kept Juniordwarf happy. It was one of my favourite days of the holidays.

I was also glad that nothing happened to Zoe.

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