Finally gorgeous weather after seven months of freezing cold. What better way to spend the day with my loves than in the gorgeous New York Botanical Garden? The gardens are way up in the Bronx, so makes it a good day trip for us. They are extremely relaxed at the gardens, happy for visitors to lounge anywhere and really enjoy the gardens (in contrast to the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens where they won’t let you sit on the lawn!), so we always pack a blanket and picnic food so we can hopefully spread out under a tree at some stage and enjoy the serenity.
The gardens are so easy to get to by train. The B, D or 4 are all nearby, and it’s a short walk from the station to the garden. The gardens are MASSIVE. There is a tram to get around, but we always walk and haven’t found it too large for strolling between each area. Mother’s Day weekend is the perfect time to visit the garden – the tulips and daffodils were just past peak bloom, but the cherry blossom trees and azaleas were in full bloom and absolutely stunning.
The gardens put on a special Mother’s Day garden party, with a live jazz band, old school lawn games like croquet, kites, and arts for the kids like making cards, baskets for (pretend) bird eggs, and water colour paintings. We grabbed lunch from a food truck (grilled cheese!) and set up under a perfectly flowering cherry blossom tree. Cheese quickly found toddlers nearby to play with, and merrily entertained herself with a little boy the same age collecting and building a house out of sticks.
We stopped to listen to the band – Cheese wanted to dance, and so we did! Nothing like dancing to a real vintage jazz band among the gorgeous trees and flowers.
A stroll around the gardens after lunch for the Cheese to nap brought us to the exact same spot we paused for a picnic two years ago when we first visited the garden. After the little lady woke up and saw our picnic spread, she proclaimed it “the best picnic ever!” (from Peppa Pig perhaps?). It was the perfect Mother’s Day with my dearest loves, in one of my absolute favourite places in the city I also love.
The only thing that could have made the way better was to be celebrating my own mother in person as well. I miss spending time with my parents, particularly on special days like today. Happy Mother’s Day to my amazing mum, and all the wonderful mums in my life and in yours!
Christine is the editor of Adventure, Baby!