I remember the day I taught Harper about using her imagination. The moment was likely born out of a “oh crap, I think I’m letting her watch too much TV” moment. We were playing with some of her people. Oh, right, I haven’t mentioned her “people” before. Harper has a fine and extensive collection of little plastic figurines - mostly playskool (a reputable children’s brand whose very name teaches my child to spell incorrectly. Weird.) little peoples, some winnie the pooh, some miscallaneous dollhouse people from a yard sale, Peter Pan figurines, barn animals, zoo animals, a plastic cinderella and her crew, etc. There are probably 40 of them - no lie, and she knows the names of all of them. I like to think this makes her quite relational and bound to be on Young Lie staff someday which I think is a pretty harmless ambition I hold for her. As long as I’m not giving her spray tans and flippers (which correct me if I’m wrong, are partial, removable, veneers for little girls) for the upcoming Miss JuneBug pageant, I think I’m doing all right. I am not a violent person but Toddlers and Tiaras make me want to actually blow up those budget pageant venues. I mean, like bomb them. Those and strip joints.
Where were we? Oh right, nowhere. Oh yeah, Harper’s “people.” So I’m pretty sure we were acting something out with her little people and I told her to pretend that an empty diaper box was a barn. Harper headed right into the crazytown that is a child’s imagination and has yet to look back. I ADORE this about her. So we role play cinderella, doctor, zookeeper, snowstorm, river rafting a basquillion times a day. It is simultaneously entertaining and exasperating as I sing the bippity boppity boo song for literally the 30th time in a day. But the most hysterical part about this type of play is that anything can be anything. Meaning Harper will use whatever object is close at hand to play a role in her current adventure. For example - Harper LOVES the scene in Cinderella where the mean stepsisters tear off Cinderella’s “beads and sashes” dress as she calls it when they realize she has used their beads and sashes. Yes, there is a small, cautious part of me that is concerned about her attraction to this kind of chick fight but I’m not sure this part of myself is all that wise and I am SURE this part of me is all too fretful so I tell that part of me to pipe down and we watch the scene again. To act this scene out out she covers me (Cinderella) with anything semi-soft to represent the beads and sashes dress - today I was covered with one white bathrobe, 3 burp cloths, a Bjorn, a beaded necklace, a plastic flute somehow made the cut, and a pair of dirty pajamas. On cue I say “Do you like my dress? Do you think it will do?” To which she (the mean stepsister) revels in the chance to say “No! Those are my beads and my sashes!” and rips every semi-soft item off of me and throws them fairly aggressively across the family room. Then we do it again. And again.
Anything is anything around here.
Case in point - the pic below. All our stuffed "peoples" were at school and needed bowls of water. So while it may look like her teddy bear is soaking in some Jesus Calling, he is actually drinking in "not too hot, but not too cold water" from his water bowl. And if I could have panned out you would have seen about 25 other animals doing the same.
Yesterday during breakfast she had a small chunk of peel from a clementine and a banana peel on her tray. She took the piece of clementine peel and wrapped it lovingly with the banana peel and said “It’s okay, daddy’s here.” Can’t name that movie quote? Fidning Nemo, people! The beginning scene where Marlin holds Nemo (still in his little fishy egg) in his fin and says “it’s okay, daddy’s here.” I’m telling you, anything can be anything with this child. Around Christmas time two chicken nuggets acted as King Herod and Jesus, arguing over who would be King. Today she needed a veil to act out Cinderella’s wedding. A pink paci was nearby so she asked me to clip it in her hair as her veil. I said yes. You gotta say yes to that stuff.
Someone told me once it’s good to pray the fruits of the Spirit for your children so I try to remember to do that. I don’t spend much time analyzing which “fruits” she is bearing and which she isn’t. We are just living. As freely and obediently as we can. But I gotta say, if RESOURCEFULNESS were a fruit of the Spirit then she’s got that one in spades.
And without further delay and with no context whatsoever, here is a pic of baby B. This is about 3 weeks old which makes a big difference in what an infant looks like, so he's changed so much already, but at the least you can see what a total lovebug he is. Smiling and on the verge of laughter. Love it.