She needs a haircut. Yesterday, we went about our business with Little Friend sporting a shaggy, fluffy, spastic, greasy do. The barette working its darndest to contain the jungle of tow head fluff quit about two hours into the morning. It literally unravelled under the pressure. Last night, Little Friend smeared a handful of lotion into her locks. Didn’t help matters at all. I love this kid.
“No. E.B.” Most common phrase heard around my house. “E.B.” is the closest she gets to saying “Isabelle” these days. We think it’s a pretty good choice for a self-inflicted nickname. “No. E.B.” is her declaration to the world that she has reached the sage, independent age of two years and two months. “No. E.B. can do it!” She knows how to do everything. I stretch out a finger of open a Valentines Day card for her. “No. E.B.” I offer to buckle her in her carseat. “No. E.B.” And in she crawls, shoes scraping once, twice, three times before finding purchase on the floor of the car, diapered bottom wiggling about in my face as she works her knees and elbows into coordinated attempts to navigate into the car seat. “No. E.B.” as I loop her straps around her shoulders. Chubby fingers work the buckle components like mismatched knitting needles. Finally, I hear it: “Mama, help.” I love this kid.
“Hide,” she commands. And ducks behind a curtain. I don’t see her or hear a peep for another ten minutes. “Build fort,” she commands. So we dismantle the couch and reassemble the cushions. From our newly built stronghold, we pepper the unsuspecting cat with paper snow balls. I love this kid.
“What. Noise?” she wants to know about everything. The airplane. The train. The motorcycle that roared down the block three streets away. The thunk made by the mixer as it slams downward. The hum of car wheels on the highway. The slam of a rolling pin in the pizza parlor. The wind. “What. Noise?” I love this kid.
Usually, bedtime stories are read in the rocking chair in her nursery. Little Friend snuggles her blond frizz into the hollow between my shoulder and collar bone. Her legs drape across my lap. Her thumb pops into her mouth. Thumkin’s tag is rubbed against her cheek. We read. She comments on each page. Sometimes she takes her thumb out of her mouth to comment. Even books without words take a loooong time.
The other night, “No. E.B.” decided she was going to choose her own seat for storytime. She shoved the stack of books off of the ottoman that serves as her side table and clambered, without help (“No. E.B.”), on top. Sitting cross-legged, Thumkin dangling from her nose, she opened a book on her lap and proceeded to read while I read in the chair. Ah, the independence of two and two months.
I love this kid.
She likes birds and babies. Chocolate and rocks. She loves books and tractors, trains and busses. She adores her cousins and her grandparents and her daddy. She recently discovered pizza. She likes snow and rain and the icicles that hang like frozen waterfalls off cliffs. She needs Thumbkin. all. the. time. She loves her Bible. I love this kid.
Little Friend has a long list of friends: her cadre of stuffed animals, Thumkin, pairs of socks that don’t match, the baby Jesus from her Nativity scene, an invisible mouse who nibbles off her dinner plate and who likes to take bubble baths with her. I love this kid.
“Mama, show.” She says, dangling off the back of the couch. When I follow the trajectory of her pointing finger, I see the piece of petrified cat poop sitting innocently enough atop our stack of blankets. “What?” She asks. Gagging a bit, I explain the dirty dangers of poop. “Poof,” she comments. “Why? Poof. Poof. Poof.” I love this kid.
She calls me Mama. And Mommy. And Mom. And, as of yesterday, Beth. My cup overflows. Have I mentioned, I love this kid? I do.