Bella’s chatting away on the top secret purple butterfly barrette phone again. Her shoe also conceals a phone, or so it seems. Sometimes the ball is a phone too. James Bond has nothing on this girl.
Today it started when the office phone rang some time after breakfast. As soon as she heard the ring, she sat up and held her hand to the side of her face and started chatting away. Later, she found the barrette to use as a mouthpiece.
When does fantasy start and imaginative play begin? Melissa Wiley documented the fantastic moment she realized her son was imagining animals into his story book here:
I never noticed the awakening of the imagination before�if asked, I’d have said it didn’t have to awaken, it was always just there. But with this child, I think I witnessed the moment real imagination arrived. There’s a board book he wants me to read every day at naptime, the Byron Barton Trains book, and on one page there’s a picture of a train passing some houses, and one of the houses has a little black dog in front of it. For weeks Wonderboy would say, “Do-hee” (doggy) when I turned to that page, and then one day he said, “Doggy in house. Doggy go house,” and he pointed to the house the dog (presumably) lives in. Then he pointed to another house on the page and said, “Cat house.” Another house: “Mouse in house.” He was imagining other animals into the picture, pretending them right into those other quiet houses.
Imagination: it’s such an illusive thing to catch a child at. What Bella is doing certainly isn’t yet the leap of inventing new characters for a familiar story. And yet I think I see the beginnings of it here in Bella’s ability to adapt any small object into a phone, to imitate in her chatter the tones and actions of her parents when we talk on our phones. Ever since I read Melissa’s post, I’ve been watching Bella and wondering what is going on in that little head of hers?