It had been days since the sun shone in Southeast Louisiana. Yesterday, the sunshine was a treasured gift. It felt more like Easter than did Easter Sunday, as the day of the Lord’s Resurrection this year was ironically stormy. After taking care of our errands and obligations Saturday morning, we decided to embark on one of our family adventures to a new destination – to soak up the rays and to enjoy each others company. We packed a picnic lunch and headed to the Botanical Gardens in Independence Park, Baton Rouge, Louisiana. We spread a blanket under a gorgeous oak tree, ate, then explored the gardens. They were a bit overgrown in some areas, and some beds really needed weeding, but we enjoyed it nonetheless. We stopped to smell the roses – literally! Strangely, some of the prettiest were the stinkiest and the most homely had the rosiest scent. There was also an extensive collection of different types of irises. The library on the grounds is also incredible – multiple floors – very modern. It has some beautiful seating areas both in and outdoors. The tables and chairs outdoors overlook bamboo gardens, fountains and man made water features – very serene. (Tip – The restrooms at the library are very clean.) The best part was that the outing was totally free (except for the gas it took to drive there)!