Spend the afternoon. You can't take it with you. ~Annie Dillard
When I think about yesterday and all the beautiful moments we crammed into the thirteen odd hours of sunlight, I feel accomplished. Content. Satisfied. Like I stuck it to the calendar, showing that intimidating little square dated twelve that there are no restraints or limitations on what can be done in a twenty-four hour period.
On the way home, we take pictures and make mental notes of the bold, green canopy that has been developing over our streets, tempting us with shade, and encouraging us outdoors. We chomp on sweet, gooey pieces of saltwater taffy, my childhood favorite. Unwrapping each little individually wrapped memory-filled morsel, I think about mine, the happiness they bring, and about the ones little chicken will have one day as well.
We drop off groceries, load up snacks and toys for the park, leaving the four walls of our little apartment to explore the polleny green sidewalks along the way. We acknowledge the presence of developing fruit high up on fig trees. We touch red, bristly flowers, shaking off the little yellow bits of their future only seconds before Lola crushes it to smithereens! She doesn't know her own strength yet.
We continue on, exploring steps and key holes, inching our way closer and closer to the neighborhood park. I notice our shadows, in love with the way they look. The way they change with our movements. The way the big compliments the small and how the small compliments the big. The way one really can't be present without the other.
I notice the way Lola's mood changes as we approach the little gate to the playground. She becomes animated, her eyes widen with excitement. She darts in past me, paying no attention to the sun beams breaking through the treetop. I walk to the nearby bench to put down our bag, turning to see where she has ended up. The swings, shocking. Lola has a new found fascination with swinging. She could spend the entire time there. And how could I resist her little face, the way her eyes beg and plea with me to push her? The way her face will light up as she swings up into the sky.
The hours rolled by as she played with children, running round and round, taking the occasional face plant into the wood chips. We enjoyed our snacks with a breeze warmed by a big bright sun. I enjoyed the company of fellow mamas all at the park for the same reason.
The later part of our day was spent napping, jogging, stopping for more time at the park, making dinner, taking sips of evening tea, bathing with watermelon scented bubbles, and enjoying the ritual of pre-bed-time snuggles. We seized the day. We maximized our time. We made the most of it.
We spent the afternoon.