Wednesday, July 9, 2008


Yesterday evening after L was asleep the remaining three of us sat down to dinner at the kitchen table, which overlooks the backyard. The fireflies were emerging from the trees back by the fence line and playing their twinkle sparkle games. We were all watching them intermittently as we ate when M commented, "Hey, I think Jerry's in our yard!" Jerry is our neighbors' dog, and just as M said that, we watched him shoot up the side of our house away from his own home, and toward our front yard. I grabbed E and we went toward the front door to go outside and check on Jerry. (M came out a few minutes later - he couldn't immediately join us because he wasn't wearing any pants. Hi, M!)

Jerry was happily running around our front yard chasing fireflies and running in circles, and was fine, because Andy and Benny (representing a 50% stake in his ownership) were playing hockey on their driveway. Once we established that Jerry did not need any care on our part, E realized HEY! I got to leave the table in the middle of dinner and I NEVER get to run around while I'm eating! And I'm barefoot! And there are fireflies! And I'm supposed to be going upstairs to brush my teeth just about now and I'm STILL OUTSIDE! And LOOK, MOMMY, THE MOON! That last part there about the moon she actually yelled out loud, and not just in the voice in her head that I like to narrate (with no actual knowledge or accuracy) for you.

So I was chatting with our neighbors and E was playing in the grass and M, carrying the baby monitor in his hand (what a Daddy!) decided that now was as good a time as any to go around to the side of the house to murder the monster weed that I couldn't dig up that had come from nowhere, was as thick as E's wrists, and was about to conquer one of our rosebushes.

(Side note: I love our rosebushes. I do not do nearly enough to care for them, but I love them. And E loves them, too, because she gets to pour our coffee grounds on them, and because they're in the same bed as her magic bean plant. And L has no consciousness that they exist. And M might not have had any, either, until yesterday when I bid to him to do my weed-murder bidding. But he does love to make me happy, even when I request violence.)

So E was under only light supervision when she squatted down in the grass. I thought she was watching a particular firefly; there were several blinking around her and she was lit by a fiber-optic cascade of Standard-Issue Office Highlighter Yellow. There was one firefly that had landed on a clover blossom in front of her, and goodness knows she loves those clover blossoms. (I go outside and pick All Those Flowers, Mommy!) So I ask her how she's doing, thinking: isn't she a picture. Look at my girl in the twilight. So beautiful. And enjoying the natural world.

She looked up at me. "Mommy! I'm POOPING!" Pin It