Cummer Museum and Gardens

It was a beautiful day in Jacksonville today so I decided we needed to get out of the house.  We are members of the Cummer Museum and Gardens so I thought that would be a great place for us to go and get out of the house.  They have beautiful gardens and sit right on the St. John River, and they have a very nice collection.  We did a quick tour through the exhibits — seems there were several elementary school classes there and we didn’t want to compete with them to see the art.  We spent out time in the gardens instead, and then had lunch at the Museum Cafe.

It was 58F when I woke up this morning.  Siri told me the high was going to be 74F with clear skies.  What better way to spend the day than in gardens?  The Cummer has three gardens (not counting the sculpture garden):  the English Garden, the Italian Garden, and the Olmstead Garden.

The English Garden was being worked on today.  It looked like they were repairing some sidewalks and planting some new plants.  We only took a cursory tour, though I explained to Joya that in a couple of months the Wisteria vines would bloom and I’d take her back to see the beautiful blow flowers that would be hanging from the terrace.

The Italian Garden, while very beautiful, isn’t very stroller friendly. You can see everything, but I couldn’t run the stroller around the plants and ponds, nor could I take Joya out and let her run free.

The Olmstead Garden is where we spent most of our time.  There is a very well laid out rose garden that has brick paths running through it and a sculpture of Mercury in the middle.  that opens up to another wide open area that is surrounded by plants and trees with a view of the St. Johns River.  I parked the stroller under a terrace, took Joya out and let her run around.  She wandered through the roses, mostly ignoring them.  She ran all the way down to the fence on the river and began playing with the fence and looking at the river.  She ran around the rose garden and into the wide open area where she took off!  She spent about twenty minutes running around through the grass.  She fell several times but, amazingly, didn’t ask me to clean her hands off.  The grass was still wet from the dew but she didn’t seem to mind.  We finally worked our way back around to the rose garden and I got a few pictures of her with a rose.  Which, I have to confess, she ended up destroying.  She tripped over a brick and tried to catch herself with the rose.  It didn’t survive.  I’m just glad she didn’t grab a thorn.

She got tired in the gardens, so we went back in to the museum hoping to see the exhibit.  We made another cursory run through the new exhibit, again, there were still so many school children there we didn’t feel like competing (ok, ok, I didn’t feel like competing).  I will say that the exhibit looked like something I want to spend more time in, so we will go back.

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“Green eggs and ham” quiche, side salad and bacon — and kids cheddar puffs (thank you Gerber).

We left the exhibit and stopped at the Museum Cafe.  I decided we might as well eat while we were there.  Today’s quiche was green eggs and ham — a ham quiche with a layer of pesto in it — and today’s soup was eggplant with roasted garlic.  I almost went for the soup but decided Joya probably wouldn’t like it.  So I settled on the quiche and a side of bacon.  I didn’t know how Joya would respond to the quiche with pesto and was a bit worried I was going to have to feed her something else when we got home.  She took a bite and shortly demanded another. And another. And another.  She  had about seven or eight large bites of the quiche and she ate a bite of bacon.  Suffice it to say I didn’t have to feed her anything else for lunch when we got home.

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