Monday, June 11, 2007

Rewinding A Play Day

When Kenz arrived this morning I had the vacuum out and was just finishing a quick sweep of the living room.
"I know the first game we are gonna play, Nana" she announced as soon as her mom kissed her good-bye and closed the door.
"Nana's going to finish playing the cleaning game and then I will play your game with you."
"You try to guess what it is?" she said, following me as I dragged the long hose back to the broom closet.
"Is it store?"
"No," she said, smiling and shaking her head.
"Is it coloring?"
"No Nana, that is not a game!"
"OK, then you tell me."
"It's Mom and Dad," she said loudly, sounding very pleased, smiling at me as if I had guessed it.
Immediately, she was 'setting up,' scooping up the dolls that would be in the drama, giving them ages, names, and 'spots.'
This one is in sixth grade, Dad," she instructed, as she put Lily in a chair at the Sponge Bob table.
"Sixth grade?" (I didn't know Kenz knew that there was such a thing.)
NO... Nana, I mean Dad, you don't talk in that voice. You talk in a Dad's voice."
"Oh OK," I said drawing out the o sounds in a very low pitch.
"That's better," she said as she continued packing up things and "getting ready for work," while I watched the babies.
The imaginary game went out on a couple 'of limbs' and extended into the next two hours, while Nana, in the character of the Dad, also went to 'work' and quickly transferred some laundry, put a few dishes in the dishwasher and managed to fold a big basket of towels.
(Do you remember when you were little how fun it was to 'play house'?)

I finally insisted that the real Nana and the real Kenz go out for lunch, breathe some real air and observe the sights on a summer afternoon. We sat on a very breezy outdoor patio. The Chinese Sweet and Sour Chicken with brown rice was excellent. Kenz laughed as the wind blew our hair into our faces like branches whipping against a window. She also marveled at how fast our food was served and ---she ate like a champion.
Her fortune cookie read, "Your going to meet an old acquaintance." After I explained that it meant she was going to meet an old friend, she asked me--- "Does that mean I am going to bump into Isabelle?" Mind you, this child is four and a half. And she's using the expression 'bump into?' Isabelle is a girl from her preschool that recessed for the summer a whole month ago. It's scary how wise she can be.
(Do you remember when you were little how much fun it was to go out to lunch and eat outside?)

After lunch, we played "American Idol." (I'll teach you how to play it in another post.) Then we played "Annie." (We act out scenes from the movie, changing them, because with only two people, it becomes complicated.) Next, we watched as a huge downpour of a summer storm flooded the back porch. ( We ran from window to window, laughing and screeching.) And finally, we played "Old Maid." The one time that Kenz got the "Old Maid" card, she got very upset, raining down real tears. I could have swore she thought she had turned into the old bitty. (I was the Old Maid the next ten games.)
(Do you remember when you were little how fun it was to win and how upsetting it was to lose?)

When her mom arrived the three of us played a few more hands of an abbreviated version of the card game. It was more like 'Black Jack.' Kenz snacked on watermelon and V8 juice, a wacky combo, before heading out the door to go home with Mommy to --- play.
(Do you remember when you were little how you never wanted the day to end because that would mean you would have to stop playing?)

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