If 4-year-old Adriana Anguiano had it her way, she’d be planting trees in a pink tutu. However, mom knows best. So, pants and her favorite powder blue boots will have to do on this brisk fall morning. A secret stash of M&M’s in the right pocket of her metallic raincoat makes wearing jeans a little easier to endure.
Adriana loves being outside, digging in the dirt, and searching for insects. In fact, Adriana’s mom says her daughter often brings ants inside their house and builds homes for the insects out of Legos.
Last month, this pint-size tree planter and her mom led a group of volunteers with The Lands Council down a sandy path and to the edge of Latah Creek. It’s here where hundreds of volunteers planted thousands of native trees in rocky soil.
The trees will improve soil fertility, prevent erosion, and keep the water clean. Adriana doesn’t understand any of that just yet. From the bright eyes of a 4-year-old girl, she’s planting trees to give ants, squirrels, and other wildlife new homes.
Mom hopes Adriana brings home more than just bugs from today’s adventure. She hopes to instill a life lesson of environmental stewardship, community service, and to enjoy life to the fullest.
“Just have fun, enjoy life, and try new things. I hope she never stops exploring and she takes care of the environment,” said Mom.
Adriana’s mom loves to give back to the community. Once a month, you’ll also find the pair serving dinner to the homeless. There’s always time to serve others, mom explains. She hopes Adriana will grow up with the heart to give back, one meal and one tree at a time.