Friday, March 18, 2011

{Children in Springtime}

They get up and out, pulling on dirt encrusted boots at the back door and running as fast as they can over brown, uneven Spring ground. With all the urgency that childhood demands, they go as quickly as they can, destination: play. And from my place at the kitchen window, I watch them go and I remember how it feels to be five and to feel your heart pumping sweet spring oxygen and hear your feet pounding the half-frozen earth.

I could call them in to science and nature lessons, but dragging children in out of nature to teach them about, well, nature...seems a little backwards. Instead I watch silently as one picks up a garden spade and starts digging in the garden boxes. Another brings me handfuls of snow drops. The oldest swings a chortling toddler in the swing.  Instead of walking, they run every where they go.

Littlest comes in for a nap, and the big ones head off to find adventure elsewhere: to my Aunt's house on the next block, where there are snakes to be hunted and baby toads to be caught and petted.  No need for a field trip, they cup science right there in their hands, touching scaly skin and imitating snake tongues flicking in and out.

Later on, when the neighbor kids break free of their respective educational institutions, a football game ensues. A flock of girls, as beautiful as springtime flowers, gather in the corner of the yard by the fire pit, playing "house" and making "soup" out of whatever they can find laying around.  I come out after scrubbing spuds and sliding dinner into the oven, sit on the back porch and knit while I watch.  Now the boys play baseball.  Littlest Joboy, too young to really play, takes to running the bases anyway, just like the big kids.

The day draws to a close around 8 pm, when B wheels his bike back to the barn after one last ride. In the twilight, I can see how pink his cheeks are, how healthy and strong he looks after a day in sunshine and fresh air.  When he comes in close for a goodnight hug, I inhale his all-boy scent: dirt, sweat and happiness.

Everything is beautiful in its time. Ecclesiastes 3:11

Just a beautiful day, beautiful kids, beautiful life.  We are so blessed.

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  1. Oh man. I wish I could make myself revel in this. Instead, I'm always yelling "Cadrian, stay off the tractors!" "NO MUDHOLES!!" "Get your boots back on!" And then calling them in in despair, and then scrubbing out the bathtub AGAIN.

    I'll pray to adopt a little of your tranquility. There is NO knitting to be had while my kids are playing.

  2. Oh Jessica I know the frustration! My bathtub is pretty black right now...;-)

  3. I love the picture of the boots. Jessica, your comment reminds me of the vast quantity of mud tracked into our farmhouse growing up with nine kids on a farm in the spring.

  4. My constant lament is that we do not have a mudroom. All that mud comes right into my kitchen, which just feels a bit unsanitary to me. I try to convince them to take their boots off on our small back porch, but they only remember about a quarter of the time.


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