One of my favorites day each year is the first day the crocuses bloom. Those little flashes of color against the drab background of last year's dead foliage carry with them the promise of spring, beautiful weather, sunshine, and playing outside.
Last year around this time, you weren't terribly mobile yet, so "playing outside" usually looked something like this:
Last week, on the first day the crocuses bloomed, we played outside. I started pulling some of the dead weeds around the crocuses while you bopped around using your favorite mode of transportation: the butt hop. I kept my eye on you while you hopped your way down the sidewalk away from me, looking back every few feet, seeming to gauge how far away from mama you were comfortable wandering. You came back and "helped" with the weeding by liberating the weeds from the oppressive pile I was forming them into. You explored the lawn a little bit, taste testing the grass and delighting in the crunch of leaves in your hands and under your feet.
It is getting to the point that I have to come to terms with the bittersweet reality that your infancy has come to an end. Just today, your Grandma remarked that you are looking more and more like a little girl than a baby, and she's right. While part of me longs to hold on to your precious babyhood, most of me is thrilled to be able to interact with you in a more reciprocal manner and to see you discover and explore the world around you and all of its mysteries. I look forward to the many days of playing outside that lie ahead of us, and will do my best to savor each and every one!