Yesterday at the library, Josie went out to the little playground. There was a group of slightly older kids running and playing and she was inspired by their antics to climb the ladder and go down the slide all by herself -- over and over--'like a big kid' she told me. This was a first, as last time she refused to slide from the top. A victory. All this while, she was very aware of the other kids and at some point approached a little boy who seemed to be about her age. I was on a bench (where she had told me to sit) watching and couldn't hear what she said but I suspect it was, "Will you play with me?" And the little boy hit her. She was stunned at his reaction -- as was I. He hadn't hit her hard and she just stood there for a moment then turned and went back to the slide where she sat down, evidently struggling not to cry. I started toward her but the boy's mother had seen the whole thing and she immediately swooped in and carried him over to Josie and had him apologize. A little later, Josie came to me and said she was ready to go inside. I told her that sometimes kids did dumb things and I was proud of her for not crying. And she told me, "But he was sorry." Learning experiences. Addendum: I suddenly realized that Josie was modelling her playground experience on one of her favorite books--in which the little girl goes to the playground and finds kids to play with. Josie had insisted on wearing her boots yesterday--a puzzling choice in this heat, but the girl in the book wears boots. And the mama sits on a bench, staying out of the play.
So I've worked my way through the photos on my laptop and can't resist posting some of the highlights. Above is a young Eddie the Cat and below is a scene from the farm in Tennessee that we owned back then.
Back in 2003 my friends and I made banners for our library's stacks -- still in use today.
Dog Club (Maggie, Eddie, Jack, and Bear) met every morning on our bed.
Christmas dinner -- some folks we miss.
A pomelo section -- I've always loved this picture for some reason.
I've been trying to reduce the size of my photo files -- delete all the duplicates and near duplicates and otherwise not-worth-saving stuff. I'm working backwards and have gone as far as August of last year. I've deleted around 2,ooo pictures, realizing that possibly one can have too many pictures of sunflowers/daylilies/blacksnakes/snow/autumn leaves/sunrises, tomatoes, and, yes, even Josie -- who accounts for much of my picture taking these days.
It was good to be reminded of what our view was before the tree were cut. And amazing that we let it go on that way so long -- kinda like the frog in the slowly warming pot who's cooked before he realizes what's happening. (It just occurred to me--that analogy is uncomfortably like the state of our nation and, more importantly, of our environment today--but I digress.)
And how our girl has grown! She was a real toddler and her hair was straight. Obviously, she already had attitude.
I'll continue this voyage of attrition over the coming weeks. And I'll try to to a better job of editing and deleting from now on!
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