As our minds turn to spring and the trees begin to burgeon with blooming buds I, for one, experience a tinge of anticipation for the explosion of blossom on our local trees. It’s one of the small things I always missed when I lived away from home. And yes, I do know that blossom exists in other parts of the country. But it was never displayed with the same gusto as the one particular stretch of Monkseaton Drive in Whitley Bay that I remembered as a child. And this ‘blossom time of year’ still fills me with a great deal of joy, without fail.
But 2013 has brought with it another kind of blossoming which is lighting my interest, filling me with wonder and inspiring my days. The blossoming of my daughter from a baby, reminiscent of a Mabel Lucy Atwell character, into a mischievous, exploratory, fascinated and fascinating little person.
No longer content to toddle around the place watching, taking everything in and processing things quietly, Holly now takes life at a gallop. She mimics, she squeals with delight, she chases her friends, calling after them by name. She joins in with songs and throws herself into the actions each song calls for. Mention Sleeping Bunnies or the Hokey Cokey and my little lady is in her element.
Just the other day, at a party for an older friend, Holly joined in the activities requested of her with aplomb. Not phased by the fact that she barely knew any of the other children, Holly took her leave of me (something she rarely does without a fight) and set off on a bear hunt with a huddle of older, more confident children and loved every second of it. It was while standing on the other side of the room, watching her from afar, witnessing her rapt attention for the party organiser, that I was forced to stand back and realise just how far she’s come on as a little individual.
It still amazes me when Holly bursts into song. But her love of song is such that I often spend many an hour fielding requests for songs from the back seat of my little car. “Mummy, how ‘bout…Daisy!” At which point I have to lead into one of the Night Garden songs and am joined with much enthusiasm by my happy passenger. Her request list, while still limited, does allow me to pick and choose any song that contains some kind of reference to the requested word. Doggy, Car, Mummy, Daddy and Lighthouse are all favourite topics at the moment. I have, on several occasions, been known to completely make up a song, tune and all, in order to fulfil my ‘Mummy obligations’ in this regard. I’m only thankful that no-one except Holly (and my very forgiving, if always amused, Mum) ever hears my sorry attempts at songwriting!
New words, new actions and new accomplishments are very much a part of our lives these days and, I hope, will continue to be so for many years to come. We are standing near the bottom of a very steep learning curve and the view upwards is dizzying yet intriguing. I love it.
Now, I’m off to learn a song about a lighthouse before the next round of requests begins.
by Helen Bowman © 2013
Helen Bowman is a freelance writer, editor and proof reader who lives in Whitley Bay and works with small companies, individuals and groups to write, edit and proof read articles, press releases, website copy and all forms of the written word.
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