Since moving to Texas, I have learned that taking pictures of Texas Bluebonnets every Spring is a Texas Tradition. So I decided we needed to do that this year. We are second year Texans, so we should act like it! So I asked some people who know about such things where to find Bluebonnets. They told me to head toward San Antonio on I-10, and I should find some. So we loaded up the van and started driving west. Gary is never very comfortable with just driving without a specific destination, but he was a good sport. We drove a long way. We passed some grassy hillsides that had lots of Bluebonnets, but they were right next to the highway, and I didn’t feel it would be safe to stop along the side of the road and let my little ones wander around on a hillside so close to a busy highway.
We kept driving, and I could tell that Gary was getting tired, so I said we might as well go to the one hillside we saw. We turned around and drove a ways when I saw a flat stretch of grass with a lot of Bluebonnets and an access road that we could park the van on while we looked at the flowers. So I asked Gary to take us over to the access road. He got off the highway, and then I saw a sign for Stephen F. Austin State Park. I said we should just go to the park and see if they had some Bluebonnets. So we headed for the park.
On the way there, we saw this quaint white church with a steeple reaching up to the sky, and out in front of it (or back of it really) was a whole field of Bluebonnets and other wildflowers – orange ones, pink ones, purple ones. I got excited. “That’s the place. That’s perfect!”
So we turned into the parking lot and parked our van, and Gary took our picture on the steps.
Then we attacked the Bluebonnets!
We knew we weren’t allowed to pick the Bluebonnets, but we hadn’t heard anything about the Indian Paintbrushes or other wildflowers, so I let the kids pick all of them that they wanted.
We found many more flowers than just the Bluebonnets. There were Indian Paintbrushes. They were very prominent.
Entireleaf Indian paintbrush, Texas paintbrush
But there were also lots of pretty purple and pink flowers.
Phlox drummondii Hook
I still haven’t been able to identify this white flower.
Gary and Katie preferred to watch from a safe distance. Something about spiders and snakes – and ants!
Fearless Emma ran through the field barefoot!
We did see quite a few anthills, but that’s to be expected here in Texas. We just watched where we stepped. Some of us did anyway.
We just enjoyed being out in the great outdoors where we could breathe fresh air and run around free. Emma wanted to climb a tree and was disappointed that none of them had branches that she could reach.
I just savored our time out in nature.
Garrett got to practice his photography skills. All of the pictures with the time stamp were taken by him. He did a great job. He seems to have a good eye. Many of his pictures were better than mine! His time stamp was off, though. It is only March of 2014, but his camera said it was January of 2015! I said that Garrett was somewhere in the future and he was taking pictures of Bluebonnets better than his Mama! A hat tip to Kim Clement’s song, “You’re Somewhere in the Future”.
Here are some of my favorite shots of the Bluebonnets.
We loved our adventure with the Texas Tradition of photographing Texas Bluebonnets. It makes us feel like real Texans now.
Now all we have to do is get us all cowboy boots and hats.
And train ourselves to say, “Howdy y’all!”
Ya’ll come back now, hear?