Tuesday, September 08, 2015

if it's Tuesday...

Well, this is the last of the "...if it's Tuesday" banners, as the schedule changes somewhat next week and Snowdrop switches to a Monday at the farmhouse. And even today is somewhat convoluted and strange, as we are cycling through some heavy storms and heavy schedules and all in all, it's one of those days where you're glad you have a roof over your head (the rains!) and sleep under your belt.

I am up ridiculously early for the cheepers and I rush to give them a few minutes of stretching and scratching before the rains return.

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(sharing water)

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(the lily that thinks it's still summer)

Of course, our girls are insanely lucky, as they have a whole huge barn to escape to at a time of storms -- rain, snow, and whatever else falls out of the sky -- but still, I'm of the European old school where you believe fresh air is as important to one's well being as anything else this planet has to offer (and that includes a chicken's well being) and so I'm glad they have at least a few minutes to cavort among the wet shrubs and grasses.

I'm about to settle in to a leisurely breakfast preparation (a routine that I quite adore), when we get the call that one of our wood chip sources -- a local tree service -- has a truckload of chips to deliver. We hadn't heard from any of the tree crunchers in months and we assumed it would be spring before we would return to yard work of this kind and yet, here we are, with a ditch and driveway filled with chips.

And so right after breakfast (which is on the early side because I do need to be at Snowdrop's home before 9)...

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...Ed starts to load the cart with the chips...

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... and that gets us exactly nowhere because the rains then come down and I mean really come down and so we abandon all pretense of outdoor work and hide inside.

And now it's 9 and I am at Snowdrop's home and the girl is waking and we begin our day together.

There are many, many themes to pick out from any day with her. A few ideas: "the daily rituals" -- which would include that early bath, which I give her even before she eats breakfast...

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"The favorite games" --  a solid chunk of time on the jumparoo guarantees some giggly moments...

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(a third tooth coming in on the bottom, of all things! the girl likes to do things her own way.)

... It would have to include a lot of crawling toward her favorite toys. Here, she is greeting her friend, the sloth.

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Or how about this theme: "new challenges!" In this next photo, she is standing at her favorite post in her room -- by the rocking chair with the koala cover on it. She is not solid on her feet yet and still she loves this swaying, unsteady place and, to make things harder on herself, she loves to stand on tippy-toe!

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But honestly, the theme that keeps pushing its way to the forefront for me is the very many ways in which Snowdrop expresses joy. Her smiles and giggles vary, of course and they're all beautiful.

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And that's just our morning. Because on this day, if it's Tuesday,  we must spend some time at the farmhouse.

The rains have receded for a little while...

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...and so I go over with Snowdrop to meet the new hens. Ed is delighted that the young girls do not, for the most part, shy away from being petted!

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The egg isn't hers, it's Butter's, but still, this is a photo of a man who loves his friendly cheepers.

Snowdrop is equally photogenic at the farmhouse, but I'm concentrating on play over picture taking and so you get just this one, which tracks its own theme:

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Late in the afternoon, I swing back to Snowdrop's home, where stroller walks are easier, especially when there's still the possibility of rain (there are many places to run and hide in the city). We head out.

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She's different today. Perhaps because it's just me and she doesn't hear the voices she is so used to hearing from behind the stroller. She keeps straining her head to see if I am still there and then she smiles her radiant smile when she is reassured. We do this maybe two, three dozen times.

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Back at her house, she is still chipper, still happy, though a tad more serious.

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And then, I hear the garage door open and I know the parents are coming home and I tell her this and she is coy: she crawls to the sound of her mommy's voice, not sure, not sure... and then she sees her mommy and all's right with the world again.

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And it is for me all right as well, because if there is one goal that I have in my hours with Snowdrop, it's not that she should learn X or Y, or that she should eat all her fruits and veggies (though the latter is surely important), but that she will remember the important things in life. She is a smart girl: she gets it. In that image, she lets me know that she gets it.

At the farmette, the rains have receded. It's late, but nonetheless, I plant 60 bulbs that we purchased last Saturday. I think about spring each time I push a bulb six inched into the earth -- wow, spring. A long time away.

And maybe that's a good thing.