simple smile.

i remember when my girls were this age, and i was so proud they knew all of their colors, shapes and could even count. they say you learn all the important stuff by the time you are 5. i think they nailed it, as you know it is important to know the difference between yellow and blue and that you have ten, count them, ten fingers. i enjoyed exposing them to different experiences and loved teaching them all about the world around them. im sure they tired of my lectures. i remember pointing out beautiful cloud laden skies and rolling hills bright green in the spring. we would talk about the color of things, and seemed to always be counting mundane things around us. i always let them touch things to experience the feel of a different texture or maybe a breakable item a typical 2 year old might not hold. quite possibly they werent deprived of that certain curiosity. and they learned, and they experienced.

but one of the most poignant memories i have when my children were young, is us all piling in the landcruiser on a warm spring evening and chasing the millions of butterflies which had just hatched. we drove through the billowing clouds of fluttering white, as we meandered through a bumpy vacant field behind our property. i remember i let the kids stand on the running boards, just hanging onto the rear view mirrors on the side of the car. big smiles on their faces, the dog running beside, his long tongue wagging in the wind. sometimes on these jaunts, they would hang their feet off the end of the tailgate...arms entwined, squealing in delight and hanging on for dear life. i can still feel that spring, so many years ago...and the freedom we all experienced if not just for a moment. a beautiful moment i will never forget.

so jayden, little girl...enjoy these fleeting experiences of youth. run free in the grass, touch a hairy caterpillar, even a slimy frog and count the stars in the summer sky. because one day these unassuming simplicities will be seared in your memory. and they will be the ones which make you smile...