Nature Study with Bella

Nature Study with Bella

Daddy has just left and Bella is crying inconsolably. So I scoop her up and head out the front door. Immediately she calms down and begins to look around her. She loves being out of doors.

I put her down on the sidewalk and she stoops to investigate some dry leaves. She takes a few steps and begins pulling at some green ground covering plants that have survived the winter. She continues toward the chain-link fence and rattles it for a minute, pulling at some ivy leaves.

She moves down the sidewalk in front of the house (Does she notice the warm sun that shines so brightly in her hair?) and begins toddling towards the neighbor’s house. Does the sidewalk feel rough on those tender bare feet? After a yard or two, she plops down and begins to intently finger the little stones in the aggregate concrete. Then she crawls a few more feet toward the stone curb that surrounds the neighbor’s flower beds. She pulls herself up to a stand and spends some time examining the bark mulch. Then she turns and resumes her walk, laughing and shrieking loudly. 

She heads toward a tree, then veers toward the street, pausing as a car zooms by. I turn her around and we head back toward our house. She spends some time digging in the flower pots on the front steps, scooping up handfuls of dirt and letting them fall from her fingers. She manages to sneak a handful into her mouth while I’m not looking. I admonish her and wipe her face. Thereafter I’m more vigilant and stop subsequent handfuls from reaching her mouth.

Later, I put her on the bottom step and show her how to crawl upwards. She manages the next three steps on her own as I hover behind her anxiously. Her first stair climb.

We head inside for lunch and I wonder what she has learned today. She can’t tell me, it’s locked away in that head of hers. Later when daddy comes home, she babbles to him at length. Is she reporting on our morning adventures? We’ll never know.

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