How is it May already?! Where is time going? Last year felt as if parts were in slow motion, and now that we’re into 2021, it’s going at rocket speed!!
Am I alone in thinking this? With warm temperatures (HOPEFULLY) on the horizon, being outside is SO refreshing. I notice an immediate mood shift in my children’s mood, as well as my own! One goal this year is to introduce my kids to growing their own gardens. Unfortunately, I am horrible at growing anything (besides children!), so I recruited the help of what I would call an EXPERT!
Ashley, @mywildhaven loves sharing about food, gardening, and motherhood! We love following her account on Instagram for gardening inspiration, as well as yummy recipes! Below is her take on what it takes to grow with your children.
Gardening With Kids! As a kid who spent every day outside in nature playing, gardening and exploring…it has been a fun experience to pass on the same level of love for the outdoors to my own children. For some, it doesn’t come as naturally to be outside in the garden with our small (yet destructive) children. But with a few tips and tricks, you too can be on your way to making many stress-free memories outside with your kids for years to come!
➔ Set your expectations low.
- Growing vegetables and planting seeds with your toddlers is all fun and games until they pull up the small seedlings you spent so much time growing. Go into the garden with the mindset that they will destroy things. Let that be okay. Use it as a teaching moment and they will eventually learn what is okay to touch and when. After three years in the garden, my three-year-old can now tell the difference between a seedling and a weed.
- If you want to explore nature trails and parks with your kids, it will go two ways: they will take a very long time to go a very short distance or they will get very tired after a short period of time and want to go home. Both scenarios are totally fine! Set the expectations low. Let them take the lead and make sure to keep the experience fun and light-hearted. No kid will like hiking if you force them to do it (especially if they are tired), but they will begin to get used to it and love it over time.
➔ Grow veggies that grow quickly.
- Veggies like radishes, green beans, and sugar snap peas have faster harvesting times than some other summer veggies. Growing veggies like these can keep the kids engaged since they will see results faster.
➔ Flowers are fun!
- Whether you grow vegetables in your garden or not, it’s always fun to grow a few flowers too. Kids obviously love the bright colors and it’s even more fun to have them help cut and arrange a bouquet to display inside or gift to someone special. Cosmos, zinnias, and sunflowers are easy for beginners.
- Growing flowers is a great time to teach our kids the magic of pollination and the importance of bees and butterflies.
➔ Visit the Farmer’s Market.
◆ Kids are visual learners and sometimes it can take a while for vegetables and flowers to grow. Take the kids with you to your nearest Farmer’s Market and they will be able to see the potential for gardening at home. The bright-colored fruits, vegetables, and flowers all lined up in a row can inspire anyone! It’s also a great moment to teach your kids the importance of local farms and how meaningful it is to shop locally.
➔ Patience is key!
◆ This can be the hardest lesson of them all, I know firsthand. If we can be patient with our kids, expect them to pull a flower too soon, brush it off when they only hike for 5 minutes, and most certainly expect them to accidentally wreck our tiny seedlings…then nothing will surprise you out in the garden! Eventually, they will learn and eventually they will be helping you every step of the way. The memories they will gain and the bonding you will experience together will be worth way more than any little mishap that comes your way.
How wonderful are these tips?! Thank you, Ashley! Check out her website here: www.mywildhaven.com
If you have any questions, tips, or comments, be sure to let us know! Add yourself to our B100 Mom Squad Facebook group and enjoy every second with your precious children! Be blessed!