October 11, 2016

An Afternoon with Bailey

This weekend my husband was out of town and I took advantage of a quieter evening to steal some one-on-one time with my little niece Bailey.  She just turned two and I adore her.  

I went to pick her up, and she had just awoken from her nap.  Sleep still in her eyes, she saw me and asked, "Go see chickens?"  I handed her shoes to put on and said, "Yes, let's go!"  She did a little dance and got her shoes on.  Her mom arrived as we were leaving and Bailey said, "Hi momma, go see chickens!"

When we got to the house, I got Bailey a basket.  She was out the door and running back to the coop.  I held her up so she could see into the nesting boxes for the eggs.  She put some in her basket and I put some in mine.  I showed her how to put them in gently so they wouldn't break.  It took her like two minutes to put in each egg because she was so dramatically careful.  Cracked me up but I loved it.  After we got all the eggs, she stood next to the run and talked to the birds inside for a minute.  

She heard the ducks quacking down by the pond, behind her, and she was off in that direction.  Here you can see her waving and yelling, "hello duckies!"

Then she stood, awe-struck, watching the birds move around her.

We sat down in the grass by the pond to watch the ducks swim.  Bailey began to take a closer look at the eggs she had collected.  She took them out one by one and looked them over.  

"ooh, look, a pretty blue one!"

"Dirt.  Yuck.  Clean."  

I suggested she try to wipe it on the grass, which she tried over and over again but it didn't work.  Each time she would say, "not work!"

"Bumpy egg."  

This one she kept rubbing her fingers over.  She was intrigued by the little bumps on the shell.  

That's one of the things I love about our eggs - they offer such variety of color, shape, texture and size.  

Despite her best efforts, Bailey did crack an egg or two.  She wanted to push her finger through the crack and kept saying, "See inside?"  So I decided we would have eggs for dinner!

We brought our baskets inside and I showed her how to crack one then gave her one to try.  She knocked it on the bowl and made a teensy crack, which she looked at for several minutes.

Then she tried to push her finger into the crack.

Finally she got it open and into the bowl.

We cooked and ate our eggs.  This little one ate two whole eggs plus a little waffle, and after dinner and some playtime we went out to put the birds to bed.  She helped me close the door and said, "Night night chickens!"  Then it was time to go home.  

I love spending time with Bailey because she is so excited about everything you show her.  It forces you to be in the moment and to see the world around you with joy and excitement.  What a gift this little person is to me.

“We have such a brief opportunity to pass on to our children our love for this Earth, and to tell our stories. These are the moments when the world is made whole. In my children's memories, the adventures we've had together in nature will always exist.” 
― Richard LouvLast Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder

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