Whatever my personal woes may be, the world keeps on turning, turning. It’s a good thing too, because we’re headed into spring. NZ has enjoyed an El Nino winter, which for Canterbury means less rain and more sun than usual in the winter months. The farmers complain about drought…but then if they complain about everything. It’s human nature.
I’ve been practicing the discipline of savoring the small things. Here’s a sampling:
My Beautiful Baby, amongst the cherry blossoms. We made little blossom babies with kowhai bodies and cherry bud heads, but their heads kept falling off. I wonder if I looked like that when I was little?
A whole hilltop at Halswell Quarry is capped with brilliant yellow wattle trees. They’re stunning, zillions and trillions of sunshine pompoms. In this instant my favorite color is yellow. They’re from Australia, but I don’t hold that against them.
This breakfast scene may look run-of-the-mill, but it represents a mammoth leap forward in child rearing. They got this breakfast by themselves, while their parents were still cozily tucked in bed. Well, to be more precise, Milo prepared the oatmeal for himself (including pouring boiling water) and the cereal for his little sister. No milk was spilled, and though I can’t guarantee how much brown sugar was consumed, I’m really not bothered. We got enough sleep. Woke up naturally. We felt great.
The forecast was for a “fine” day, meaning sunny and warm, but in the misty back yard that promise seemed unlikely to be fulfilled. “You wondered what it was like inside a cloud,” I reminded Milo. “This is it. Cold and clammy.” How do you suppose those minuscule drops line up like perfect pearls on the spider strands? Turns out spider silk is NOT perfectly smooth, but instead has little fluffy clumps spaced regularly along its length which catch and hold water better than the smooth stretches between them.
That’s Thomas the Tank Engine that he’s riding at Sumner beach. He and Naomi spent a contentedly busy day there last weekend, moving sand. There’s no end to a child’s fascination with that stuff, and I also relish a sculpting challenge now and again.
Instead of the Pale Green Pants with Nobody Inside Them, we have the Pale Pink Gumboots with Nobody Inside Them. The kids are amazingly cold tolerant when it comes to winter beach water, and Naomi decided that no boots were better than wet boots after a surprise wave filled them with water.
Milo theorized that if he coated Thomas the Sand Train with “cement” (wet sand), that it would never wash away in the tide. We didn’t stay long enough to disprove that theory.
“Mommy, can you wipe me?”
“Mommy, can you WIPE ME!?” The summons repeats itself with such volume and regularity that she can’t hear me yell “I’m coming” from the next room over. Never mind. The poop is in the potty with reassuring regularity these days, and wiping a toilet bum beats changing a diaper any day.
Every year the daffodils burst through the grass at Hagley Park. Whole swaths of grassy river banks under the naked oak branches turn cheerful, and with them the residents of Christchurch. Winter must be finished.
Are all kids naturally happy creatures? Maybe not, but I’m lucky that mine seem to be.