My boys are blessed to live in the great state of Texas. We have ever changing weather and living on the Gulf Coast is magic. Houston always has something going on. Between the bayous that flows behind our home, to the many wildlife parks. If we want more of an urban city scape, downtown offers festivals, museums, food, and the zoo. That’s just in one city. The past weekend, in the spirit of spring, we went for a drive to take bluebonnet pictures. I had never done this before due to my urban skin tone and demographic. But what the hell. We load up and start driving. If you have never been to Texas here is a quick “what you need to know.”
The bluebonnet is our state flower. They grow wild on the road sides with other wild flowers. They make pastures and Texas highways scenic and painted with blue. They are also it’s illegal to pick them. The other thing you should know is my boys can’t say bonnet. They called them blue vonetts, vomits and blue fart farts. That’s life with boys. If you have them you know what I mean. As we trek our way to the hills, I desperately am praying we see flowers soon. These kids are locked in battle for a grocery bag in the back seat. Never mind the smart pads and other toys. That shit clearly is not entertaining as this bag. Once that scuffle is put down I see them. Bluebonnets!
Now if only it were that simple. This patch is on the side of the road. Middle median, way too dangerous and not worth stopping for. A little further up the road I spot a safer location and much fuller. It even has yellow and pinks mixed in. NOPE. We are not stopping yet. Why you ask? Because my wife said so. She is currently on the phone with her mother finding out the best location. Fellas this is where you just shut up and drive. A few “stop fighting back theres” and “don’t make me pull this car over” later. There it is. Finally like a vision in a dream. This absolutely amazing pasture filled will hills of blooming deep blue.
I pull a Dukes of Hazard u -turn and we pull over to the side of the road. Before we can fully take in all the wonder that is Mother Nature, we have to get two wild boys out of a car parked on the side of the highway. As a parent I have pictured every worst case scenario. From a random truck flipping to me being ran over. Once I clear my head and get the baby out of the car seat we move to the next obstacle. This is a pasture so it is enclosed by a gorgeous white farm fence. Its’ also on someone’s property so the kids get a firsthand lesson in trespassing. (Other people were out there so it’s not what you think) We find a break in the fence and we are in there like swim wear. Almost instantly my nostrils are invaded by the sweetest of smells. You forget the highway behind you and are wrapped in a sea of blue and green. The fragrance of the flowers almost puts you in a trace.
The trance is then broken by your kid stomping the shit out of these delicate flowers. Regaining focus and having them follow the paths carved out we survey the land for the perfect photo shoot spot. As picturesque as it can be, there is red barn in the back drop with a creek running just at the bottom of the hill. Atop the hill are great oak trees that stand a sentinels silhouetted against the clear blue sky. As sweat rolls down my face holding the baby I hear my love. As parents you are fully aware that getting kids to actually smile and look at the camera is easier said than done. My sweet angel of a wife is now trying to keep her sanity as she directs this shoot. We may as well be shooting wildlife as much movement that’s going on. We have so many fake smile, stares off into the distance, and just flat out what the hell are you doing pictures. Once it’s time for the little baby to get in the mix all I can do is pray. Surprisingly he did the best. Go figure. While she is taking photos of him the two big boys are captured in an awesome moment not fighting. I bust out my phone and get them running up the hill in pure joy. These are the moments I love. It’s pure, innocent, and they have no damn clue how awesome they have it.
It makes me think of just how lucky I am that we do live in Texas. The weather, food, and beauty here is amazing. But what really makes it all worth it is my family and sharing these Texas moments with them. Oh, and ya’ll too.