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We have a little dynamic at work in our family of late.  Little Lucy has just now entered the world of online shopping and is currently experiencing the less exhilarating side of it.  She waits for her treasure to arrive.  She waits and she waits and then she waits.  And then, in a burst of flamboyant frustration, she waits some more.

Every day after school, she asks me if I've checked the mail.  Every day I tell her no.   We then proceed to our next stop and pick up our Bigs and our carpool friend.  Every day Lucy then asks me if we can check the mail.  Every day I say yes and smile and hand her the key as I pull over to the  mailboxes, her daily tormentors.  These mailboxes - they mock her.  They sadden and they grieve her.  She hates these mailboxes and then she tries a different tack.  She's cheerfully manipulative and sunnily, as she makes her way toward these witholding  metal boxes, out surely to thwart the fulfillment of her joy,  she calls over her shoulder, wish me luck!  And then she's angry again as she sorts through that day's contents only to find that all the Universe conspires against her to squash her sunshiney joy.

She's ordered an American Girl bathtub, complete with dazzling artificial pink bubbles.  Daily, she pages through the American Girl catalogue, which is dog-eared and tattered from all the loving perusal it's undergone.  She saves her allowance each week and painstakingly works her financial way toward more American Girl paraphernalia.  She hates that in its company name though, it excludes her Canadian devotedness and says so regularly.  When she's grouchy, American Girl's lack of Canadian-ness is oft lamented. 

So she's just now in that heady, unusual position of actually having ordered something from this precious catalogue of hers.  And now she waits and she decries the state of the nearby Canadian border crossing, which has almost certainly mistaken her beloved bath tub for a kilo or two of cocaine.  She's indignant to be mistaken for a drug dealer.  She wonders aloud if maybe one of these selfish border guards has taken her bath tub home for his own, undeserving little girl to play with.  She vows that she'll check it out very carefully for signs of clandestine play when it finally arrives.  I listen to her and if I'm feeling gracious, I laugh at her nine-year-old obsessiveness.  If I'm tired of hearing all these same conjectures time and time again, I don't laugh and instead, I tell her abruptly one more time about the concept of a postal tracking number.  And then I tell her not to talk about it anymore for today and a fairy-tale mother's smile does not light up my saintly face.

But really, she's so cute.  And she's learning so much.  I love her more - much more - than I love myself and I'm so pleased that it's me God has chosen to show her how to grow to be a patient shopper and so much more.  What a beautiful duty.  What a blessed woman.
 
 
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From Flor Larios' Etsy Site
Spark plug.  Feisty Little Thing.  Chatterbox.  All of these cliches so aptly describe my little girl.  She's Lucy and there's no overlooking her.  She's the tiniest little thing you ever saw, but the magnitude of her personality more than makes up for all that.  She has the funniest,  riciculously advanced vocabulary and she thinks that disco needs to be revived.   She can talk in a rumbly Fat Albert voice and when you watch her doing so, you can't help but yelp out with helpless laughter.  She loves to dance, but not in the ballerina/princess sort of way that so many of her little peers master.  Her version is all fairy jive.

I think I've mentioned that everything about her is brown.  Her eyes, her hair, her skin and even, more  often than not, her clothes.  Her skin reminds me of a butterfly's wings.  Sometimes you wonder if maybe you shouldn't touch it, it's powdery softness seems so delicate.  Warmth emanates from her little brown body and from her great, effervescent  personality.  My Mother-in-law delighted in using the word scintillating before she died, and I've never known anyone more worthy of being called so than Lucy.

When she tells you a story, her round facial features screw themselves up with tremendous animation.  You sometimes find yourself so caught up in the watching of her to actually hear what she's saying.  Her lips are a rosebud.  Her round eyes are fringed in a thick black sweep.  She is generally utterly joyful or dramatically downcast.  There's little middle-ground with this One.  She's endlessly forgiving.  She'll follow me around anywhere.  My lady smells and colors are a magnet for her.  One of her favorite places to spend time is in the secret, cave-like confines of my closet.  Here she can be a woods-fairy and try on all my high heeled shoes at the same time. 

Sometimes she talks so much, you feel tired at the end of the day.  You berate yourself a bit, asking What's your problem?  Why are you so wiped?  There's nothing tangible to point at to explain away the fatigue.  She's not naughty.  She rarely disobeys.  She's kind and she's fun.  But she just.  doesn't.  stop.  She finds it hard to wrap her little brain around why her parents aren't willing to devote their entire lives to her care alone.  She struggles with not interrupting.  Especially right after school on our walk home, where she and her siblings all clamor to tell about their respective school days.  If she's being honest, she would say that she thinks her news is just a bit more important than everyone else's.  But o my word is she cute.  The sweet little love notes this child brings home from the also-so-sweet grade three boys are numerous and touching.  They're often of the "check this box if you love me, too" genre.

She's one of the more interesting human beings I've yet encountered.  Her animation adds jazz to any room.  Where she is, there is laughter.  There are shenanigans.  And first and foremost there is energetic joy.  I'll be so lonely when my wood-Sprite leaves me.  But the world will be far better for her arrival there.