Sunday, June 29, 2014

Elsie the wit

'Fankoo mummy' says Elsie quickly, not paying attention.

'THank you' I correct, exaggerating the amount of tongue between my teeth. 'Th, th, th' I repeat.

Elsie brings her lip under her top teeth. 'Fffffffff' she says. 'Fffffffank you.'

I try again. 'Stick your tongue out.' Elsie obliges. 'Now trap it between your teeth. Th, th, th...'

Elsie gives it a go, but once she starts to think about the word and not her tongue in a strange place in her mouth, her old habit creeps back. 'Fank you!'

'Try again Elsie, tongue between your teeth.' I encourage. She's done it before, why has she forgotten?

Elsie is bored with this exercise, and suddenly an idea strikes.

'Dziekuje!' she says brightly, her eyes shining with her brilliance.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

1 June, a date of note.

A year ago, the view out of our window looked like this:


I just took this picture out of the window - exactly one year on.


It's a pretty radical transformation when the two images are put together like that. Very cool. You know what the other cool thing is? It's exactly three years since Mum had her stem cell transplant. The fact that she is still around to witness our taming of the wilderness outside and my descent into full-blown infatuation with gardening and generally growing things, makes our successes all the sweeter.

Two other things that have grown like weeds since this time last year are also celebrated on this day, Dzien Dziecka, or children's day. It's not a Belgian holiday but celebrated in Central and Eastern Europe: it's a communist hangover but I like it.

Then:


Today:





It makes me so happy seeing these two growing up and growing together. The whole job of preparing little people for life is a daunting business but seeing one make the other laugh brings the fundamental important core back into focus.

Let's end with a Proust quote for my old Dad, even though he got Molly in an arsenal top this year and last. Bringing together gardening, counting blessings and living in the happy moment... 

Soyons reconnaissants aux personnes qui nous donnent du bonheur; elles sont les charmants jardiniers par qui nos âmes sont fleuries.