Tuesday, January 31, 2012

shine on

I'm not even sure how to begin the telling of our day.

Maybe with my first noticings.... Maddie wasn't feeling very well. 
Her front tooth has been loose (more loose) the last few days, and on this particular day it was causing tears.  She was totally out of sorts.  Scared, anxious, in pain... almost completely undone.
My thoughts on it were, "Aah.... lots more extra love today.  How wonderful."

It's been very interesting, this shift within me.  I've moved (er... am moving) from a regular place of "I'm just not good enough at this" to, "Wow.  Look how well I'm handling this, and how quickly I'm able to pause, and shift into a soft and loving place."
(All part of that Balance thing.  More on that, still, later.)

So when she was feeling better, she wanted to build.
"Can I build with you?" I asked.



It was here at the table that the day took on another sort of shine.
For some reason, Trevelyn started talking about a young kid on youtube who likes to talk about his beliefs about the rightful (righteous, maybe?) unfairness of gay rights.  Particularly marriage.
Trev then preceded to lecture us on how wrong this was.  Eric and I listened for a long time, and naturally we put in our own observances and beliefs into the conversation.
I was so happy to hear his arguments and observations... he might not have a keen understanding of a lot of the problems and challenges that gay relationships face (he's ten, after all), but he has a very definite understanding of fairness and respect for humanity.
As conversations do, this one evolved to talking about behaviors and tendencies in animals, and then human evolution....

Soon he was quite done with that topic and moved onto oil drilling in the ocean. 
(And how he doesn't like it.)
I was curious to what his opinions were, so I started asking questions.  
(These were very slow-moving games, with all this talkin' we were doing.)
"Why not ocean drilling?"
Oil spills, harmful to the environment...
"What about on land?  Doesn't it harm the land, too?"
He talked about that for a minute or two, then, "Well... if we didn't have oil, wouldn't we just be forced to have only electric cars?  To find other ways to do things?"
:)  Yup.  We would.
"What other ways are there?"  I asked.
And so it went.

Evidently he had some talking to do, for soon he moved on to "Bot Flies".
"What are bot flies?" I asked.

And then the Hell Creek Formation in Montana (cretaceous rock).

I was thoroughly loving this Beingness.

A few days ago we received our game Professor Noggin's History of the United States that we won from Jessica at Only Small Things.  I had briefly looked at it, but we'd been sick, and hadn't gotten it out yet.
I had thought earlier that day that it might be nice to play it, as I am wise enough to know that even though the game wasn't something we'd normally  pick out for ourselves, or something we necessarily specialize in, it might spark interesting conversations.

So we asked Eric to sit down with us (I figured we needed him, as we needed someone to win), and we began our history game.

"American History", I said of the game.
"Adolf Hitler was a soldier in the first world war," Trev began (did he see a card with Hitler on it?)...
"World War II, Bud," interrupted his Dad.
Irritated glance at Dad, then, "Adolf Hitler was a soldier in War World I," he reiterated, "And then the leader of the Third Reich in War World II, from 1933 to 1945."
"I can see quite clearly that I am going to lose," I said happily.

"What did the Suffragettes fight for?" to Trev.
"I don't know."
"Think about this, Bud.  The mother in Mary Poppins is a suffragette.  What did she believe in?"
"Votes for women!"  (Granted, that one needed a little prompting, but I was so completely impressed at this point that it mattered not.)

I posed a question to Eric about Custer.... don't remember what it was, and, "Do you mean James C. Custer?"  asked Trev.  "He was known for his many, many small wars against the Native Americans."
A few pilgrimage, early U.S. questions, and "How did the Native Americans get to the United States in the first place?" Trev wanted to know.
"The Berring Strait," answered his Dad, and so went the next topic of conversation.

Conversation, led by the game, went back into human evolution and then into dust bowls and droughts in the mid-west during and contributing to the Great Depression, among other things....

Trev won the game.

What a wonderful gift those few hours were.
Not only did I get to spend a long while completely enchanted with my child, but I was pushed in front of the mirror, and came face to face with doubts and values regarding how we learn.  Even though I hadn't been asking.

No doubt there will be more on that in the coming days....  :)

Life is surprising.
And amazing.
And good.


  1. love these kinds of days, shining like diamonds. X

  2. I came here needing a slice of happy. Thank you :)

  3. I think that you and your family are amazingly awesome.

  4. \i know what bot flies are...for all the wrong reasons :S

    I love these kinds of conversations. Can you watch bbc Iplayer? They have a series of lectures about the brain from the Royal Society aimed at children with experiments you can do while you watch...we loved them.

  5. Loved this post. Love those kinds of conversations. Yep, life is good.

  6. I could just squeal over that baby doll hammock. :) I like you guys so much.

  7. Hmm.. the Bering straight??? As a Lakota Woman..let's talk about this, shall we????

  8. Ah! I was already grinning long before I got down to the part about Trev winnin' the game! Cool!

    I'm sorry to hear Maddie had a rough morning--congratulations on that tooth, though!

    About bot flies--would you believe I was just reading about them last night? In a book methinks Trev would probably enjoy, it's called:

    The Stunning Science of Everythings (Subtitle: Science With The Squishy Bits Left In!)

    It's great...seek it out. :)

  9. Hi, Mary. Nice to meet you!

    He was asking about human evolution, and knows that homosapiens first evolved in Africa. He was wondering how human evolution moved to the America continents.

    As far as I know, Africa, then Asia, and from Asia to Russia and the top of North America and downward into South America.

    I believe that's what scientists say, anyway. (What they suppose.)


Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts!