Saturday evening, after a very long day of being on the go with my family, I packed up my adorable six-year-old nephew, Jay, and headed into town from "The Farm" where my brother and his family now live. They have had some plumbing issues and currently have a working shower, but not bath tub. Everyone was in agreement that Jay could use a good soak after a long day working as a farmer, so I took on the delightful task of hauling him to the nearest free bath tub at Granny's house.
We left the Farm later than we should have - probably close to 8, maybe even 8:30. Jay crawled in the back of the Granny Van and buckled up as I started up the engine. We settled in for the ten-mile drive and I quickly realized that he was so tired that he was going to talk the whole way to Granny's so he wouldn't fall asleep. I loved every single minute of the drive.
Together we noticed the sunset, and how black the trees look when the sun is going down on the other side of them. He pointed out all of the farm machinery along the way - naming which pieces Daddy and Great Papa have on "Our Farm" and which pieces they do not have. He noticed our little town off in the distance and was curious about a couple of buildings in the "skyline" - "Which one is the Ethanol plant, Auntie Jen?" and "I think that big tall one is the elevator, pretty sure." It was priceless to so freely be watching his little mind at work.
I decided to prompt, "Tell me what you and Daddy did on The Farm today!" I heard all about putting an auger into the truck, and how Great Grandpa says the H-word a lot, and how Jay worked really hard to clean up and organize the space between the chicken coop and the shop. His efforts were visible on his clothes and his skin all covered in dirt. He even told me, very mathematically, that he "spent ALL day, but ONE HOUR out workin' on the Farm! I just came in for one hour to do Easter eggs."
I prompted again, "So, what was your favorite thing today?" And this was my most favorite, priceless moment:
"Farmin' and Easter eggs, Auntie Jen. Them were my favorite."
Bless his heart -- he is a mini-Joel, who is my brother, and he cherished his time decorating Easter eggs with me as much as I cherished the time with him. Day Made. It made his bath more special to just scrub all of his hard workin' little body parts, and to wash his hair and give him a great big hug at the end of his exhausting day. And the second-best part of the day for me was after he fell asleep (which took about two minutes), sneaking back in, tucking in his covers one last time, and giving my little prince a smooch on the forward as I prayed over his sweet little life, that he will continue to grow into an incredibly wonderful little man. Love Him.