Oh, I've so enjoyed my stretch of days with just these two littles! Steve took the older boys on a river trip, and everyone else was scattered on their own various adventures, leaving me with just these two for a bit. Such a change in the regular numbers and the rhythm of our normal, that it allowed for all kinds of relaxed freedom and connection. My favorite? Maybe our post-dinner raspberry picking that made way for breakfast ingredients (Raspberry and Cream popsicles are a totally healthy way to start the day, I'm sure of it).
What a treat to watch Harper, the middle child simultaneously miss his older siblings while also thriving in their absence by being 'the big kid' for a rare minute (given gender and age spreads among my five, I think Harper really falls more into the classic 'middle child' role of the family, thoughtful little peacemaker that he is). Without his help, I couldn't have wrangled the escaping chickens (no one can catch a chicken like he can), or fixed the broken pig fencing (these things always happen when Steve is away, I swear), or known how to get to the transfer station (I'm a bit embarrassed to say that's always Steve's job!). I leaned on Harper heavily in these past days and I could see his core strengthening and spirit shining as a result. So much to be learned from that for me, and to carry forward, even when the bigger kids return.
Oh, and my baby girl lost her first tooth! The youngest age at which one of my littles has done so, which is rather fitting given this child (a little about the relevance of tooth loss in Waldorf education if you're interested). She was talking (of course) when it happened, and I shall never forget the look of surprise on her face when it plopped right into her hand, mid sentence. And another childhood milestone has come and gone.
Precious growing up days, these are!