There is a tree growing out of the pavement at about the half way point of our school run.
For 51 weeks of the year it is ignored, apart from when there is a pile of dog poo under it. Then the kids are warned to stay away from the tree; I’ve been that parent crouched at the school gates, desperately trying to scrape dog sh*t out of a school shoe first thing in the morning and it doesn’t improve my mood for the day.
But for about one week every year, this tree becomes a more positive focal point of our short walk to and from school. This is because it is a cherry blossom tree, and a few days after it flowers spectacularly, it starts shedding petals. Most of these petals are caught by the wind naturally and so float to the ground of their own accord. But other petals get a helping hand…
We’ve been doing this for years now; it’s become a family tradition. I have year after year of photos of the kids frolicking under a petal downpour but it’s been much easier to get photos since the bigger ones could reach the lower branches themselves. These days I can just stand back and press the shutter.
A couple of times we’ve been overseas for Easter and missed the blossoms entirely and the kids have been hugely disappointed at not getting their ‘cherry blossom snow’ fix. Even the bigger ones still enjoy standing under the shower of pink and white, seeing how many petals they can catch and picking them out of their hair and off their clothes afterwards.
Like real snow, the blossom variety doesn’t last long- maybe a week at most? So if you have a blossom tree nearby it’s probably flowering right now. Grab the kids, and your camera, and get some photos of the fun.
Maybe you’ll start a family tradition of your own?