Summer moves. We move. And the sun moves. She pulls herself out from behind the clouds, lingering longer each day, tricking us into believing we have more hours left in a day than we really do. The grass, and the children, grow like weeds. Nothing stands still, especially the days (and children) of summer. As the vegetables in the garden flower and ripen, I can't help but be aware of how quickly everything around me is maturing - just like the season. Just a little more proof from last week:
Audrey often plays with a five-year-old neighbor. A very clever five-year-old, who knows a lot and is ready (and oh so willing) to tell you all about it. On Monday, she saw Audrey riding her new (to us) bike with training wheels. She told us Audrey was getting pretty good at riding her bike (she's also very complimentary). Then, she told us that she had two bikes like Audrey's that she can ride. She had just finished telling us that she could dive underwater and touch her head to the bottom when Audrey laughed and sighed deeply. "Rebecca, that's silly," she said.
That night, our area suffered a severe thunderstorm topped off with hail. We lay awake listening to the sky's theatrics and desperately hoping for sleep. Thunder exploded above us.
"I can't believe the kids are sleeping through this," Jason said.
"They're not. Audrey's already in our bed." (She had snuck in moments before and crawled up to me. At first, I had mistaken her for our dog who is so skittish during storms, I'd already put her on the foot of the bed. Nathan, a.k.a. Wonder Boy, was the only one who slept through nature's percussion extravaganza in his own bed.)
Tuesday night, while I prepared Nathan's rice cereal, I overheard Audrey whining at the table.
"I don't like when you cry," said Jason.
"I don't like when you say no," said Audrey.
"Who's the boss?" asked Jason.
"Yes. But, Mommy gives me permission to tell you no."
Wednesday, Jason and I celebrated our ninth anniversary. That morning, when Jason woke up, his phone beeped with two alerts. He picked up his phone and read his calendar:
Take out the trash!
He's never called me that one before. I suppose there's a first time for every nickname.
On Thursday, when Audrey was too preoccupied to listen, Jason bopped her gently on the head. With one quick motion, Audrey swiped at the air above her hair and dropped the invisible matter she had collected to her side. "I threw that away," she said.
Every view from my window captures a picture of growth: the zucchini blooming the orange buds of vegetables-to-be, the newly-hatched birds taking flight from their nest, our young trees heads taller than they were last year. And, inside these four walls, the picture is much the same: a six-month-old boy blooming before my eyes and his sister, looking a head taller than last summer, threatening with every grown-up comment (sweet, sincere, or sassy) that she's thinking of flying the nest.
Today, we asked her what she wants to be when she grows up.
"I want to take off the counters," she said. Which, translated, means she plans on taking whatever she pleases off the counters when she's grown up, since they are off-limits right now. As for my bets, I'm hedging them toward a stunt double. As for that little brother of hers, bending over backwards in his Bumbo seat, his head hung upside-down so he can follow his dad moving around the room, I'm thinking trapeze artist.
I'm off to enjoy these all-too-short days of summer while they last. And to increase our insurance policy...