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Auntie Sarah/Sophia Day #3: A Visit to Como Conservatory

This past Monday was Sophia's 3rd Summer Day With Auntie Sarah. Michael brought her over at 8:30am – accompanied by her bike, helmet and camera – and our day started.

I had a few things to finish up before we could start out on our destination: a trip to the Marjorie McNeely Conservatory (also known as just "Como Conservatory") to photograph the flowers. Since Clint and I live less than 4 miles from the Conservatory (as the crow flies, anyway), I figured the day would be a snap. We'd get there early (it opens at 10am) and beat the rush. Even on a Monday, I knew it'd be busy.

Well, it didn't take long to realize that Michael had forgotten to leave Sophia's booster car seat dealy – which meant until he could come all the way back across the city and leave it we were stuck at Casa de Danks (he was waiting for the cable guy). I improvised by bringing out the Play Doh, which is a great time-consumer. I watered the plants, picked up a bit, and tried to get Sophia's camera battery door open...of course the batteries were dead.

After the novelty of the Doh wore off, I figured it was time for a glamour shoot. I put some "make-up" – blush, lip gloss and just a tad of my favorite hair product: whip – on Sophia and asked her to strike some poses. Per usual, she happily obliged me. While only (already???) 6 years old, I've caught some of the most "grown-up" expressions on this kid's face. It amazes me. (Good luck with that, Amy, when she turns 16! Gonna be a heart-breaker.)

By the time Michael made it back over, it was already mid-morning...while he ended up getting the stubborn kids' camera to open, I realized I didn't have any batteries in the house – we'd have to make a stop at Target. At that point, it was easier to just let her use my old point-and-shoot camera (it had served me well in the past, although it's time to start looking for a replacement, poor thing) but THAT needed juice, too.

We headed off to Target, and by the time that was done it was lunchtime. I'd originally planned on heading to Como first, followed by lunch, but we were both hungry (and neither one of us is pleasant with low blood sugar). We headed to Keys Café to sit on the brightly-colored "bar" chairs and had a tasty lunch (beer cheese soup and tuna fish sandwich for me; mini corndogs, fries and applesauce for her).

Satiated and ready to photograph the flora, we made our way to the Como grounds...where it took me 15 minutes of driving around (and around) to FINALLY find the last parking spot. We had to walk quite a ways to get to the buildings and Sophia only needed to be carried for a few minutes :)

When we finally got in, I was worried that we only had ~1 hour before I'd need to bundle her back to my place (to pick up her bike) and we'd have to head back to her house. However, with a 6-year-old – even one interested in taking pictures of all the flowers – an hour turned out to be the perfect amount of time.

She wasn't interested in seeing the Bonsai Room, but we did hit the Fern Room, the North Garden, the Sunken Garden and Tropical Encounters. Last – but certainly not least – she wanted to play in the room designated for kids where they can learn while they play.

When it was time to go home, there were no tears...but that didn't deter me. I'm already planning what our next Auntie Sarah/Sophia Day will entail!


Anonymous said...

GREAT photos! She looks a lot like you. Although, she's pretty cute.