It took me a year to walk to this place. That is, it has taken me a year to actually do it. It really only takes about three minutes to get there. So, today, for the third time in one week, we headed over to the baseball field that is on the next block. This time we pulled the wagon. Yes, it is as dirty as it looks. The girls obviously didn’t mind! Betty was chomping at the bit with her two little teeth.
After discovering this place which has fences to scale and a big field in which to run, the kids beg every day to go to “the park”. About one minute after we got there, Jack discovered his hidden (or not so hidden) Ninja self. After all, it is what he wants to be when he grows up.
Not to be outdone by her big brother, Elsie scaled right up the fence. She was so proud of herself when she succeeded in going up AND down without any help.
Here is another face of accomplishment. Jack hopped on Elijah’s big bike and took off with a grin. He zoomed around the field like he’s been riding big bikes his whole life, promptly pushed it up to the top of the highest hill he could find and raced down without a flinch.
I think I see his manhood seeping out of this picture. He so proudly showed me the hair on his legs the other day, and thought they looked like a man’s. He’s still a little boy, though. I don’t know too many men who would walk around with used bubble wands attached to their belt-loops like it’s the coolest thing in the world.
Then there’s my not-so-little girl who is wearing my shoes now and borrows my jacket because the ones from last year go up a few inches from her wrist.
Elsie is so close to mastering the two-wheeler. She had me in fits of laughter with all her giggling and accidental slamming on of her brakes. It is a really good workout to push a three-year old on a teeny bike that requires a constant squat while running.
Then there’s this little munchkin who just goes with the flow. If the flow happens to hit the decrepit swings for a few minutes, then she’s all smiles. She doesn’t care how nasty the chains look, or even if they hold her up. She is consumed with smiles and the new feeling of her tummy tickling inside her as the air whooshes by her face like a big breath.
Every single day the kids remind me to make time for fun. Hold all calls until the book is finished. Turn up the music and dance. They don’t care if they have matching shoes, matching clothes, or a beat-up soccer ball. They do care about feeling loved. They want us to notice how cool they are with their imaginations. Like when playgrounds become castles and bubble wands become keys. They want us to see them in action, laugh at their silliness, and cheer their accomplishments. So leave the clothes pile stacked high and grab the dirty wagon. Don’t wait a day, a month, a year… remember, it might only take three minutes to get there.