Friday, October 26, 2012

To Build a Fire: Junior Version

I amused myself the other morning by giving the girls a book of matches and the challenge to start a fire in our fire pit.

The kiddos actually had a pretty good idea initially, in that they brought outside an absolutely massive stack of newspapers from the recycling, but instead of crumpling that paper they tossed it--whomp!--into one big stack in the middle of the pit, set a lonely stick on top, and then went to town with the matches.

Of course, the edges of the giant stack of paper DID catch fire, and the second that it did, the kiddos immediately stopped all work and set to putting their cold hot dog wienies on sticks, only to turn around and...where did the fire go?

Back to light another edge on fire!

I offered no assistance whatsoever, but simply sat to one side, did some work of my own, and snickered.

After a while Willow got so frustrated that she couldn't even get her matches to light correctly anymore, and we all considered it a major accomplishment when they got the fire to stick long enough that they could at least somewhat warm their hot dogs before munching them down:


Sydney has been very into movie-making lately, and I was surprised to notice, as I was downloading these images, that at some point after this moment she sneaked behind the camera and took an ELEVEN-MINUTE video of our fire pit morning! I noticed her start the video, and I knew that she had my camera for this length of time--I just didn't realize that she was taping for the entire time:



I am also surprised to tell you that this video, which includes a little homeschooling, a little conversation, a little silence, a little disciplining, and a lot of silliness at the end, is precious to me. My child did something that nobody EVER does for me: she caught me unawares with her camera. My kiddos will have acres and acres of tape of their happy childhoods when they're all grown up, snippets of time when I've captured them, oblivious to being taped, spinning out pretend games and laughing unabashedly and talking to each other and loving on their pets, but nowhere, until here, do they have a record of their mother, just as unaware of the camera, talking to them and engaging with them just as I always do.

I'd capture a moment like this every day to enjoy in later years, if I could.

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