I woke up at 4:30 this morning, for no reason. Or, for stupid reasons. My back hurt, my stomach hurt. Once I was awake, my brain was too, and I spent the next 15-20 minutes trying to turn it off before giving up. I read instead.
At 5:30 I heard someone cry out. Clive. That’s very, very odd for him to cry at night. Which is a good thing, because when he wakes up, Ephraim–the quintessential light sleeper–wakes immediately. Ephraim was already crying by the time I was halfway down the hall to their room.
I hushed everyone, picked Clive up, half-swaddled in his mies, and took him over to the rocking chair to rock. Ephraim picked up all of his mies (he has four) and tried to haul them all over to the rocking chair, too, but had to settle on just two. He clambered up and wedged himself next to Clive.
Sweetest way to start the day, even if it was one-and-a-half-hours earlier than their usual wake-up.
No one would go back to sleep, so we just started the day, and I mentally braced myself for a bad case of the whiny-tireds (and maybe even on the kids’ part, too) to follow us throughout our daily routine. It’s a good thing I had already planned a little photography outing.
If there is one thing the boys love to do, it’s run outside. If there are two things they really love to do, it’s run outside and get dirty. A dirt path near an open field? It might as well have had their names on it.
Until yesterday, I hadn’t realized how badly I’ve been craving taking photos of my family. It’s been a busy two months in the photography realm, but other than the required monthly updates (and instagram, which doesn’t count) I haven’t taken my camera out to capture the boys since our summer vacation.
If there’s one thing I really like to do, it’s take pictures of my children.
This picture had to be included. Have you ever tried to take pictures with a six-month-old strapped to your front? It’s hard. You have to be very careful not to hit their faces with the camera. I didn’t bonk Anselm in the face at all today. That’s because I did all my practicing on Clive when he was a baby.
Sorry, Clive. Mama loves you.
I have a weird look on my face because I’m concentrating on not dropping the camera while I hit the shutter button. I can’t concentrate on the camera and keep an eye on two running boys and smile prettily at the same time.
Anselm looks like he’d rather be anyplace else, but I think he’s just worried about my dropping the camera, too. He spent the morning watching the boys run away from us, and then cackling like a chicken when they came running back.
I love this forest. The woods are magical and full of history. Huge, looming trees and winding creeks. I want to tell the boys to look for deer, look for elves, look for Narnian talking animals. I want to run with the boys, but Anselm would surely protest.
Ephraim is in his element. He finds a stick immediately. It’s a sword. It’s a gun. It’s a sword again. He digs in the dirt and growls in frustration when I tell him to stay on the path. “I’m a man-cub,” he tells me. “I’m not Ephraim. I’m Mowgli.” He runs ahead and runs back then runs ahead again. Anselm cackles.
Clive follows his brother’s lead on everything, except his two daring attempts to climb off the footbridge to the creek some six feet below. This from a child that wouldn’t climb backwards off a chair this morning. Toddler logic. He keeps running back to me to hold my hand.
When my hand’s not available, he holds Ephraim’s hand.
We walk through the patch of forest and to a small clearing, then turn around and walk back through into the open field. When we emerge from the forest, Ephraim is adamant. “We’re not going home, Mama. We’re not going home. Can we not go to our house?” Then his tune changes. “Are we going to go eat lunch? Can we have applesauce?” “I had fun, Mama.”