I haven't written much about Owen Jane lately, but I can't help it this time--she really is so darn sweet and cute it nearly gives you insulin shock to talk to her.
Several weeks ago, Paul and I, in an effort to enhance her memory (I read about this in a magazine), started talking to her about something we did this summer--a carnival in Cherokee that we went to with our friends Chris and Melissa and their three little girls. The article said that telling the story together with your child will help her remember the event better and perhaps create memories earlier in your child's life (most of us don't remember anything before the age of 3).
So we tried it. We talked about our friend's camper, the train ride she took with Hannah, and the airplane ride with Daddy. Owen did seem to remember the plane ride and our talking about it made her want to go again. I tried to explain that the carnival was just a visiting carnival and was gone. And then I remembered...the NC Mountain State Fair. Wasn't that coming soon? Fall, maybe?
I started to tell her about the Mountain State Fair. Maybe there would be rides there for her, and animals. Her eyes lit up and she got so excited that Paul & I both got into telling her more and more about the fair. There would be another airplane ride, and horses, and cows, and maybe even llamas. And maybe she could feed them.
"Ponies to ride?" She asked. "Maybe," we replied. "And lots of other animals that you can touch and pet."
This was in that golden hour before bath time. My favorite time of day to be with my sweetie and my baby girl just talking on the porch as the day slips behind the mountain. I was basking in the glow of our parenting--here we were creating both memories and anticipation for our daughter. What a wonderful scene.
But I basked too soon, forgetting the tricky issue that very small children have no concept of time--at least not of times several weeks away. As we took her in to undress for bed, the tears began.
"I want to go to Fairy Mountain," she wailed, pitifully. "I want to go to Fairy Mountain and ride airplanes and horses."
It took be a good two minutes to figure out what she was talking about...Fairy Mountain? Ooohhh....The Mountain Fair! Uh-oh, she thought we were going right away. And boy was she crushed when she realized we meant, well, someday.
The next day she told all of her teachers and friends at school that she was going to Fairy Mountain to ride airplanes and horses with her Mommy and Daddy. I had to explain to her teacher what Fairy Mountain actually is and how we got ourselves into the predicament of explaining that the Mountain Fair, not Fairy Mountain, was next months and we would go then.
In the (too many) weeks since, nearly every other day, she has mentioned it. "I'm going to go to Fairy Mountain...someday," she says, and then she lists all the people who are going with her (in her fantasy): Mommy, Daddy, Paco (the dog), Grandma Dallas, Grandpa Bob, Grandma Margaret, and Grandpa Al. "And Owen," she adds. And, of course there is the list of things she will do there: ride the airplane and ride horses. See cows.
Well, guess what starts today? And guess where we're by God going tomorrow afternoon....
All I have to say is there'd better be an airplane ride and maybe a horse to sit on.
Pray the rain holds off.