This afternoon my dad came over with a soccer ball and cones for Katie. I played soccer for some years, and something about the afternoon air almost reminded me of autumn soccer season today. Katie loved it! We practiced dribbling, stealing the ball away, shooting and blocking goals, keeping our hands off the ball, and rolling the ball toward ourselves with the tip of our foot. We ran around until sweaty. Katie was cheering and high-fiving, exclaiming to Boppa with joy when she kicked it through the goal. Thank you, Dad, for figuring out another way for my daughter and I to connect and for giving us a new idea for playing outside. I can’t wait to do it again tomorrow!

Then it was time for digging in dirt and making rivers, eating a popsicle, and looking at the birds in the sky with Boppa. A hawk. Seagulls. Finches. Crows. Katie and Boppa lay down side-by-side on the towels on the grass and looked for spider webs glittering in the sun.

We all came inside and painted with water colors. Katie and I had a project going already. I cut off a big swath of butcher paper and tape it down the to table sometimes…and we just paint and layer on it to our hearts’ content. Sometimes I have big crayon papers like that set up, too. It seems to me to be a way for kiddos to have easy and instant access to art time without too much worry, mess, or set-up for me. Boppa added his water color paintings to our paper, and we all three painted together. No plan, no worry, a meditative time. Katie and Boppa found things to laugh about; Eric took his late afternoon nap nearby.

Amie came by later, after Boppa had left. Katie and Amie built a block castle while I finished putting away laundry. The evening breeze is blowing into my open window as I write, and best of all I find myself eager for tomorrow: Baron’s, library, baking Irish soda bread with my mom, more soccer practice. That delightful anticipation is one of the best feelings in life, I think.

So, goodnight friends. I hope there was beauty to found today, wherever your footsteps took you.