Whenever I have time off, I enjoy visiting museums and historic houses with my daughter. It is something that we both share a love for as we both enjoy learning new things and history. Well, she enjoys it most times, sometimes I have to encourage her to go because she thinks it will be boring, but once she gets there, she always has an eye opening experience. And today was one such experience. We don't get to go often due to my busy schedule with work and school, however, this day the heavens opened and I miraculously didn't have either, and the fruit of my womb didn't have school either. After a little convincing, I persuaded her to spend the day at the art museum with me, instead of going to "Forever 21" to look for whatever new style of clothing she was obsessing about.
I put the address in the Google Maps app on my phone and off we went. We lowered the windows and opened the sunroof in the car to enjoy every aspect of our day. The breeze felt good, and the sunlight was warm on our skin as we blasted our favorite songs through the speakers, simply relishing in each other's company. As we parked and started to ascend the stairs towards the museum entrance, we had to stop and take in the grandeur of the place. Architecturally, it looked like art and literally, it felt open and free, like a living breathing gentle giant almost.
I have never even fathomed architecture being art, and I was happy to discover a new expression of creativity. The building was as unique as they come, square and solid with large beams that grounded the three levels, but open and airy. There were hanging plant-like vines that hung from the beams as well, long and cylindrical, their lengths extending from the ceiling and stopping just a little above our heads. They made for quite a sight and contributed a natural, forest feel to the over all ambience. The sunlight danced across the beams and openings of the structure, creating interesting shadows and designs throughout the terraces. The gardens were full of green shrubs with smooth, white alien-looking structures that looked like sculptures. And this was just outside, we hadn't even stepped inside yet.
Upon entering, the wooden floors (which I think were made of pine) had a great unvarnished texture and appearance. The heavy, chestnut-colored ginormous door was hard to open but impressive, the windows were floor to ceiling letting all the light in. The gift shop, on the first floor, had some really curious looking gifts: some metallic pigs, recycled hangers and cute coffee mugs to name a few. The restaurant was also on the first floor, as well as the little café that we patronized; the chocolate chip cookies were first class, by the way.
There were a few exhibits on the first floor. A parrot or macaw display with live birds and a wall sized painting that looked like red wiggly lines, but after reading the description and much eye squinting, was really a morbid and bloody display of Snow White and the seven dwarves. The second floor was my favorite though, with my favorite display being the one by Baez. I could never tire of looking at her work. All her paintings spoke to me; they all had meaning and the word exquisite is what comes to mind. The Aboriginal paintings were also simple, yet complex, with colors that were varied and cool.
One of the terraces faces the Miami River just outside of the restaurant and the café, and the views are incredibly relaxing and calming. I drank coffee and ate my chocolate cookie there and this moment was one that reiterated to me that it's not money that makes you happy, but simple things like exploring a new exciting place with my baby girl, savoring the warm coffee and delicious cookies, smelling the sea, and feeling the gentle breeze while listening to the endless banter of my offspring. I pushed all the worries aside and lived in the moment. Why waste my beautiful day worrying?
I am slowly learning to surrender things that are beyond my control to God or the higher power and every time I remember to do this, the result is always a feeling of peace and serenity. And guess what? The things I was worrying about always seem to work out without me having to do a thing, and in ways I wouldn't even figure out or plan if I tried. As I bid you adieu my lovelies, I hope that you live in the moment and find peace in the little things.