This weekend was a busy one. I did exactly what I said I would do - get out and do some walking. I just chose to walk somewhere besides down to the park at the end of my street. Instead, I dragged the whole family out for some fun and adventures discovering some hidden gems in our corner of Arkansas.
Our weekend travels started Saturday with a day trip to my most favorite shopping destinations - Eureka Springs. It's a quaint, historical little village in the Ozark Mountains. Downtown Eureka is a long street that winds up in to the hills full of little boutiques, art galleries, and vintage stores.
The history and the architecture are my favorite parts of our annual trips to Eureka. Sure, the shopping is fun, but I always enjoy just taking in the beauty that's around me. The walk up and back down the hill again is also a special treat. If there's anywhere to get a work-out without realizing you're getting a work-out, it's walking around Eureka Springs.
Yesterday, after having so much fun on Saturday, I decided I wanted to get out for another mini-adventure. I have seen ads for a small pottery studio/ gallery located about an hour away from us that intrigued me. It was an outdoor park full of pathways decorated with local art work, statues, and figurines. I really had no idea what to expect, but I assumed that it would provide a nice place to get some walking in.
So, our trip to Terra Studios commenced.
The drive out there was a long one, but I'd say worth it. The park isn't that big, by any means, but it offered such a beautiful escape from your ordinary walk in the park. Trails were carved in to a small area, and lined with the most unusual characters I've ever seen...
|Little troll watching over the entrance to the trails|
|Troll Jelly loved because it was picking its nose|
|Peanut thought this little character was quite amusing|
|Lonely little troll watching passers by|
|Jelly thought this troll needed a hug|
|Her "troll face"|
The park also had a 7 layer labyrinth. The kids couldn't understand why it was so small, and that you could walk right over the labyrinth wall. I tried to explain that it wasn't about how quickly you got to the middle, it was about trusting the journey there. Pretty profound, don't you think?
I was the only member of the family that took the entire walk to the center of the labyrinth...
|Labyrinth from a distance|
|Jelly making her way around the first layer|
|Peanut and Jelly got tired of walking around in circles, and tried to cheat... to no avail|
Too often, I've tried jumping over the wall instead of trusting the entire journey. Quick fixes here and there, fad diets, short lived trials. What I have failed to ever do is complete the entire journey... trusting it, no matter how long it takes. Just as Peanut discovered that cheating would earn her nowhere but back at the beginning, I have to discover the same thing. It's all about patience... sticking with it no matter how slow the journey may be...and following the path as it falls.
So, if anything, the journey to this park was worth it just for the deep spiritual insight it offered.
Anywho, back to our travels...
After exploring around the troll woods, we came to another artsy, reflective area complete with wishing well, walls of art, and more curious little statues...
|Making a wish or two?|
|A family of trolls watching over the fountain|
|Cool art wall|
|She looked a little shy...and so did Jelly|
|The cutest miniature doorway coming out of a tree|
|Very pretty gem pool|
|This was probably my most favorite statue...so colorful!|
|In the gazebo|
|Tea party, anyone?|
|How about a game of checkers? Life sized!|
|Maybe even chess? Why does Harry Potter come to mind at seeing this?|
|And the neatest little troll village|
I've always wanted to make a little fairy garden...and why not make one out of my entire yard? I figure it would be a great project to keep me busy, burning calories, and enjoying my summer. Three birds, one stone.
I'm going to take some time to do a little planning and shopping today, and then tomorrow I'll go in to more detail about what's to come in my little yard oasis. I'm excited to see what I can do with it.
Right now, though? House cleaning is calling my name...YAY!!