The days are numbered.
That is the problem with this time of year. The glorious days are so few between the excruciating heat and the diabolical cold. Which is why they are so treasured.
Today was one of those golden days. Where the sun literally casts a golden hue on the world. Where it feels as if there is a perma-halo all around. Where it is perfect to gallivant in the wild. What a blessing Faye reminded me of that fact this morning.
It was after we had dropped Keith off for school. We took Beth to the local health department to get her immunizations (little trick I learned, massage their legs for about five minutes before the needle goes in and it wont hurt very much. It worked with Beth. Yay!) and while we were outside getting back into the van, Faye took a deep breath, sighed and said,
"Mommy, isn't it a beautiful day? Aren't the mountains lovely?"
And with that, my mind was made up, knowing that my days to play in the leaves are numbered. It is going to be an early winter, I predict. Last Friday it snowed already.
Besides, there is something about these golden haze days that just make them so much better than a regular day. I can't quite name it, but years ago I decided I would try to inhale as many as I could.
And so we picked Keith up from school when he was done, and went on an excursion. I remembered a beautiful nature path that Jeffrey and I used to visit when Keith was a baby, and decided to take the kids.
I am so glad I did.
It was beautiful!
The whole time, Faye would look at the beauty surrounding us and say "Mom, that leaf is dazzling! That rock is dazzling! The water is dazzling!"
I love hearing big words out of little kids mouths. It always makes me laugh.
And we traipsed through the nearly tangible sunshine,
collecting the embers fallen from the trees. The kids threw rocks into the river, we listened to the frogs croaking all around us, and grinned at the satisfying crunch of leaves beneath our feet.
It was so lovely. What a lucky girl I am to live with so much of the majestic nature all around us, within walking and driving distance.
As we headed back to the van, Beth got a little fussy. I picked her up from the stroller and realized she was warmer than usual. I cuddled her close and she fell asleep nestled against my chest, my personal marsupial.
I said a silent prayer of thanks for my olfactories and breathed deeply the smell of my Beth and the wild outdoors. It was simply heaven. The bigger kids were happily frolicking around, and my baby was cuddling me with a 101.6 temperature (lousy immunizations).
See? Heaven right there.
We headed back home, and about ten minutes away from home, Beth began to cry, nay, scream. Which is not like her. She is typically a very happy baby.
I may have broken the speed limit, a lot, the whole time reciting in my mind what I would say if I got pulled over. Of course, I think if any officer heard those heart wrenching screams, pity would inevitably be applied. Happily, I didn't get pulled over, and I did get home a smidgen faster than I usually would have. I plucked Beth out of her car seat, rushed into the house and pulled out all the stops to comfort her.
She fell asleep in my arms, and stayed that way for the next three hours, her little lip quivering whenever I moved.
And so we sat on the couch, that golden halo light streaming through the windows, warmly reminding us that few days would be so magical before the snow sets in, but comforting us and joining in the moment, gilding it in my memory for those cold January days when warm weather seems so far off.
I rocked the baby and read Harry Potter to Keith. I helped him with his blog (Keith has a blog, did you know? He saw me on mine, and wanted to do one. I figured it would be good practice for him, so we set one up and he is more diligent than I am. What a great example!) and cuddled with Faye who declared she wants to always be my daughter and live with me. Even when she grows up, she won't move away, she will always live with me.
I laughed, gave her an extra squeeze, wished she could always feel that way, and affirmed her desires. Because if I can't stop time at least I can be delusional about it.