Last week we spent a few days up at our new house working and my kids enjoyed all kinds of fun and excitement. There are at least eight or nine other children under the age of twelve that live on our street. Together they comprise a gang reminiscent of The Little Rascals.
Unanimously they have decided that we are wrecking our house, but instead of viewing this with the guarded disdain of adults, they are excited. After all, “they like wrecking things.”
My children fit right in. Together with their popsicle stained faces and mismatched clothes, they played hard and loud.
From my second floor ladder heightened view, I watched as they overtook the street and neighbor’s yards with their dirty feet and loud voices. It made me smile as I heard them taunt each other with names like fat head and chicken boy, because in our politically correct suburbs that is considered bullying and may, in professional opinions, scar children for life. To me it is the sound of children allowed and encouraged to be children. I’m sure every retired neighbor longs for the gloomy days of January when this gaggle of kids are snowbound, but I hope my own two take advantage of every minute the sun shines.
FringeKid even found a cat or as she insists, the cat found her and won’t leave. I think that’s probably because she fed him a bowl of milk, made a bed for him under the porch stairs, and gave him more loving attention than he’s seen in any of his nine lives. I’m not a cat lover myself and if this one is still living under my porch the next time I return to work on the house, I will probably have to figure out a way to cage it, bring it to the vet for shots, and buy it a flee collar. As I watched FringeKid lay her head on the cat, hair cascading down its’ fur, all I envisioned was a house full of flees.
While sitting stuck in traffic on the return trip home, I experienced a proud parenting moment. From little voices in the backseat, I learned that my children were watching Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer in English, French, and Spanish. I now know they will grow up to have culturally broad minds and I breathed a sigh of relief, because all is well in world of children.