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August 25, 2011 / Bika

Millions of Guppies

Still packing. Still going insane, one box at a time. Ethan’s going to school every day to preserve some sense of normalcy (in this family? Ha!) so my evenings are not only full of packing, but homework. It’s okay. I’ll survive. Just have to keep moving, keep breathing, keep packing–one box at a time.

I kinda envy how little the move is affecting him so far. Even though his dad is about to go out on contract for another year, Ethan’s cruising along, playing games, making friends, and reading books. Not that I’m complaining. Every time he picks up a book of his own volition I squeal on the inside, clamping a lid on my glee as though he were a timid deer in the forest and one wrong move would cause him to bound away with a fwip of his contrary tail. Yes, little boy. You read those books. They’ll be some of your best friends.

Last Friday night I was raiding when bedtime rolled around. See, when I raid, I don’t have time for the usual bedtime story ritual unless I remember to start it an hour before he’s supposed to go to bed. I didn’t remember, and neither did he. “We’ll read together tomorrow,” I told him. “Can I read a book to Mr. Teddy?” he asked.

OF COURSE YOU CAN.

So he took a brand-new copy of Henry Huggins off the shelf (mom and dad bought him a set of Beverly Cleary books this year, which won serious brownie points with me) and proceeded to read the entirety of Chapter 1 to a stuffed animal. These are not short chapters, mind. He read 28 pages without any prodding from me and loved it. I caught him skipping ahead in his reading textbook for fun earlier that week, too, now that I think about it. It makes me happy–I’ve created a Reader.

Last night we read Chapter 2. It’s been 20 years since I read Henry Huggins, but it may as well have been yesterday. The scenes where Henry buys and cares for his baby-making guppies were seared into my memory ages ago. I made up a little song about it and Ethan was delighted:

Henry bought a couple guppies and he took ‘em both home,
They started having babies so they wouldn’t be alone.
He dumped ‘em in a pickle jar and put ’em on the floor
He filled up every pickle jar and still they made more…

And there were millions of guppies everywhere
Guppies in the living room and guppies on the stairs
Anywhere you looked, there was guppies there
Millions and millions of guppies.

Can you say “a couple guppies in a pickle jar” three times fast? I bet you can’t. (We sure couldn’t, but tongue-twisters are especially hard when you’re giggling.)

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