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    Dear Bee // 41

    10.18.2013 / FAMILY

    Mark-and-Graham

    Dear Bee,

    We’ve been spending a lot of time together, you and me. Last weekend we took our first solo road trip to visit my parents so your dad could have some uninterrupted time to work on home projects. Want to know something cute about your father, Bee? He’s a doer. I’m a sitter/thinker/dreamer, but my gracious does your dad have some serious wind in his sails. We celebrated our eight year wedding anniversary a few weeks ago and I asked him over dinner what he’d do with an entire weekend to himself. “Renovate the basement!” he answered with utter and complete seriousness, so of course, Bee, we totally had to make it happen for him. (It’s also worth noting here that my answer to that same question was to take a getaway to a tropical island for a massage/facial by the ocean and to order room service and eat late-night dinners on white sheets with a line-up of all of my favorite TV shows, but alas, Ken’s dream wins first. Someday it’ll be our turn, Bee, and I’ll bring you along if you’re nice.)

    I think you might be really starting to like us, Bee. That sounds odd to say, but there’s this weird glimmer in your eye when you see us, like you understand that you’re one of us and we’re one of you and this is home base. Sometimes you’ll be playing alone with your dolls or Bernie or stacks of empty tupperware and you’ll peek over your shoulder to make sure one of us is in the room. If we’re not, you’ll first call for George in the most desperate of manners (Jooooooooge!), because where we are, George is. I think this is wise of you, Bee, because you’ve already figured out that dogs come running when you call, and parents are usually too busy washing dishes or picking up baby tornado aftermath. Still, we always come eventually, because we were meant to be together. We’re wired for you.

    You’re very selective with your time. Your go-to activity for the past month and a half has been to sit on our laps and read the favorite pages of your very favorite books. It’s kind of a short process, though, because there really are just one or two pages of each book that you like, and you don’t waste any time in finding those pages. Then you nod your head once you’ve arrived at the particular page of preference and shut the book, as if to say, “There. Yep. It’s still in there.” and you go about your day. (For posterity sake, your top three faves are the lizard and frog pages of The Poky Little Puppy, the bear page in Almost an Animal Alphabet and the bird page in Pat the Zoo.) I’ve been thinking of tearing out these particular pages and creating The Ultimate Book of Bee’s Favorites, but I have an inkling that your retired-teacher-turned-librarian grandmother would not appreciate this pure disrespect for the written word. So for now, we’ll just lug our giant stack of books around the house from one room to the other. Note: If you’re ever diagnosed with poor lumbar support, this is the fault of your librarian grandmother.

    It’s also worth pausing to discuss that the aforementioned Pat the Zoo book provides a bit of a conundrum, because you do not like giraffes and get quite flustered when you encounter one amidst your daily book adventuring. And in Pat the Zoo, there is not only a giraffe, but a giraffe juxtaposed with your very favorite bird page, so you often skip to the wrong page and throw your hands up in total disgust shouting “Ick!” as if you’ve touched a hot stove and are scarred with the mark of a giraffe. It’s a really tough life you lead, Bee, and you will someday be pleased to know that giraffes are not a commonality in today’s workplace or surrounding community. I think you’re safe.

    You’ve learned to play hide-and-seek and often hide in the corner behind your crib, revealing yourself by shouting your own name and jumping into sight the moment you’ve hidden. Here is a list of future employers that will not hire you for this trait: FBI, CIA, the government and your librarian grandmother.

    Bee, you are a delight. You are unruly and temperamental and always, always covered with Puff dust, and you are absolutely perfect for this family. Keep up the good work, and we’ll keep the giraffes out of sight.

    XO,
    Mama

    • She sounds like such a sweetheart- and I love hearing about her book preferences. Linden loves the last page of “Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What do you See” when the teacher finds all of the children. It makes her light up every time (and she often skips the rest of the book and goes right for it). Sweet girls!

      • Oh that is the cutest thing ever. They’re so funny, aren’t they?

    • Oh dear, there go my arranged marriage plans – Forrest enjoys giraffes. Darn. Otherwise I think they’d get along fine! = )

      As for books, he likes the animal ones that have sounds (supplied by us), and one called Panda in the Park that he flips through quickly, occasionally stopping to point at something we’ll name, until the last page when he throws his arms up to yell “Daaaah!” because the animals are all together now, yay!

      • Ha – that is SO funny, and so very similar to Amy’s girl (below commenter). Man, I’m sending a virtual playdate stat!

    • Library lady

      Loved this letter, as always, and especially how you are infusing your love of books into Bee’s life, so that she, too, finds enjoyment for herself. I think it would be perfectly acceptable to make color copies of all those favorite pages into a very special Bee’s Bestest Book! Hope Ken accomplished his goals for the weekend, but if not, road trip this way anytime you want!

    • Library lady

      P.S. Was the photo taken at your local library? I can’t wait to go there this winter!

    • I love the book story here so so much. Dean’s new favorite is any book where he can pull a tab or flip open a flap. And he loves my monkey impressions :)

      • Oh that’s the cutest. Isn’t it funny how babies gravitate toward monkeys, the animal most similar to them? It’s like they know their kind. :)

    • margaux

      so sweet, and so funny. my 18M daughter loves the caterpillar and lizard pages in the poky little puppy! she’ll sign and say “more, more” as i finish reading those pages. the rest she could give two hoots about. new book favorites: the donut shop and the boy with a drum. anything rhythmic or rhyming keeps her sitting still for longer, and she’s just started sitting down in the rocking chair and “reading” a little bit by herself these days. so damn endearing.

      • That is SO funny – our daughters are so similar. :) And gosh, watching these little babes sit down to read a book is the SWEETEST thing.

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