Saturday, December 5, 2009

Feeding Goats a Rock

            Michelle was hosting a baby shower for a friend this afternoon, so I organized some of the fathers and we took our kids to the petting zoo. The moment Celia tottered onto the property her eyes lit up, and stayed that way for two hours.
            There were ponies, goats, cows, donkeys, sheep, horses, ducks, geese, chickens, rabbits, peacocks. Every single animal she would reach down and pick up something off the ground, then reach over and try to feed them. I’d say something like, “Goats don’t eat rocks, Dear. Try petting them.”
            She was adamant, though. Had to try to feed every goat in the pen with her little rock. What a sweetheart. I had to practically pry her away from the experience. When I opened the car door she broke into tears. It’s the first time I’ve ever seen her cry to be removed from somewhere.
            I smiled at her. “You really liked it here didn’t you?”
            Her face started turning red as she wailed.
            “We’ll have to come back, I think.”
            I buckled her in and got in the car.
            Michelle still had about fifteen ladies at the house when we finally got home. Celia tore through the house meeting everyone and eating whatever cookie crumbs she could find. I cracked open a Belgian white beer and smiled as I watched her push a young boy in her little Care Bears car.
            Michelle told me yesterday that she read a magazine article that said mothers should make sure to invite somebody over once a month, to make sure you don’t go crazy by yourself and you keep your house clean.
            When she told me that we laughed, and laughed, and laughed. We have people over pretty much every day, and large groups a few times a week. I guess we’re both hospitable and extroverts, but even so, I’m surprised at that article. How can anyone really do a good job of parenting with so little exposure to other people? That’s the spice of life! I’m the opposite. I want Celia to be surrounded by people, learn other peoples’ languages, food, customs and smells. I want her to be a well-rounded individual.
            Sure, I know she’s an animal lover, but may as well cultivate people-loving too!

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