When I was little, I spent most of my time pretending something... Pretending I was I princess (or a witch.) Pretending the space between my house and the hedges was a cave that I lived in which I had to defend against intruders. Pretending I was cat, lying for long periods of time in the sun (ok, not particularly long periods, I got bored really fast and simply could not understand how cats could do that all day long!) and trying to drink out of a bowl with just my tongue. My dolls and my stuffed animals were my best friends, well until the day that I invented a twin...
One day, when I was about 4 or 5, a census taker showed up at our door and asked how many people lived in our house. My mom answered correctly, "Four." (If it was a quiz she would have aced it!) And then the census taker asked my mom for something else that forced my mother to leave the door for a moment and go fetch it. I used this opportunity to inform the census taker that there were not just 4 people that lived in my house, but 5. I had a twin and to prove it I would go get her and let her introduce herself. So I left via the kitchen, to go fetch my twin, and returned via the livingroom using two small folding chairs, perched under my arms, as crutches. I then introduced myself, as the other twin who had broken her leg in a terrible swing set accident, to the very nice but slightly bewildered census taker. Ok, I admit it, I was that weird, lonely kid that people are always telling stories about. Sad. (This is one of the stories that still makes me cringe every time I think of it. Did I really think she'd believe me?! Silly girl. But like I said... active imagination.)
Hopefully Dashell won't be taking after me, but his imagination does seem to be ramping up and I am delighted! I truly believe that imagination is the cornerstone to having a full, wonderful creative life. And gosh darn it, I think the kid's got one!
It all started several months ago with his trucks and cars. He'd spend a good part of each day going, 'Vroom! Vroom!" and wheeling them around the floor. Then he moved onto trains, "Whoo! Whoo!" And the trains and cars, of course, not only drive around but also smash into lots of things. Boom! Boom! ...or more accurately, "Ba! Ba!" (He's definitely a boy!)
Lately Dash has been into giving kisses. He gives kisses to the dog, to the cat (or at least he tries), to an illustration in a book. The other day he even gave a kiss to one of our front steps! (Why? Who the hell knows.) Given his penchant for kisses, it shouldn't be a big surprise that this morning Dash was having his train give kisses to the pictures in his books. Or that the other day, his stuffed turtle went on a kissing binge, laying a wet one (or are they just dry and crusty coming from a turtle?!) on everything in sight!
Dash has also taken to "picking" the flowers out of every book we read and "handing" them to me. By the end of storytime, I have enough "flowers" for an enormous bouquet! What a lucky mommy I am!
And if the little guy gets hungry while we're reading? No problem, he just indulges in whatever delicacies present themselves on the pages of the book, and then takes a long draw from the invisible beverage in one of his stacking cups. The other day, he not only "ate" whatever the hungry baby in the book was having for dinner, but he also "ate" the baby's nose and thought that this was HIII-larious!
And then, of course, there was the "spaceman" costume... Dash ran around the downstairs holding his helmet snug against his face (it eventually got quite steamy in there!) giggling, going, "Vrooom! Vrooom! Baaaaaaa!" and banging on the helmet with Arlo's bone.
I LOVE that he seems to have a very active imagination. How absolutely boring would life be without one?! (I definitely would not be going on my monthly hikes in the Swiss alps and winning the lottery every week, that's for sure!)