Leaf Girl!

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Wow. Has it been a week already? This week has been a blur. I have a feeling that now until February will be a blur. The holidays are always a blur.

The other day Bug and I made a Leaf Girl costume for Alphamom. (Please click over, you’ll be amazed at how easy it was to make. No sewing required!)  I thought it was just going to be another craft day at work but this one was special. This craft Bug was really really into. It was her idea from the start and even though she’s changed her mind on a daily basis about going as a witch for Halloween, this costume really inspired her. Or she really inspired this costume.

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Bug is my nature girl. She drives me crazy everyday walking home from school as she zig-zags everywhere but in a straight line that might lead us home. She’s stopping here and there to collect sticks and rocks, leaves and berries. It takes us forever to get anywhere.

I know this sounds horrible but I regularly scold her for picking things. We can’t go forward in a straight line because she has to stop every five seconds to touch and feel the flora around her. You really have to take a walk with us someday to see how extreme she really is. She literally cannot walk four feet without reaching out and grabbing bits of leaves, picking up sticks or collecting some pinecone or rock or berry.  She just has to touch anything and everything. She can’t help herself.

At first it was super cute. What mom doesn’t like getting little bits of bouquets pressed upon them? Flowers for you mom! I loved filling little vases with buds and petals that had to float because their stems were too short. My windowsills are filled with such lovely treats…

I hate to say this because it makes me sound terrible as a mother but after a while all these gifts have gotten kind of annoying. Especially when my hands were full of bouquets and flowers were stuffed behind my ears and in my pony tail holder every day. And then they’re dead and rotting in the bottom of my purse and in my car and on my windowsill. I have bits of plant matter in my pockets, in her pockets, in her backpack, in her shoes, in her clothes. It’s everywhere. I am constantly vacuuming up dead bits of leaves and you can imagine what the washing machine looks like. Sometimes I feel like I’m living in a compost pile.

I don’t like to scold her. She’s probably going to grow up to become a botanist someday. She really really loves plant life.  Is this because I carried her in baby carrier strapped to my chest and took walks every day when she was a baby and constantly pointed out flowers and plants to her before she could even talk? Is it because her first memories are picking tomatoes in my mom’s garden? Is it because her little cousins and she used to “make salad” by chopping up bits of plants and mixing them in a plastic Barbie colander before she was even three? I don’t know. I just know that plant life is important.

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So it is not at all surprising that there is nothing Bug likes better than putting on a leaf costume and climbing in some trees. It’s like she’s finally become one with her kind.

In fact, this photo shoot took on a life of it’s own. I was happy with the ten shots I got right out of the gate but no, she wanted more pictures. She was posing this way and that. Take a picture of me in this tree, mom! With these bushes! With theses berries! Over here mom! Take a picture of me twirling on the path! Did you get my smile?  she says as she gives me a perfectly plastic three-quarter-turn pose. Who taught her that?!!

It was almost kind of creepy how much she wanted to pose for the camera. Is my daughter turning into an exhibitionist like her mom?  What have I created?! Will she be blogging soon and posting selfies like every other beautiful twenty-something I follow on the internet?

That might be a question for a deeper blog post but don’t think it doesn’t cross my mind on a regular basis. Even though I’m all for embracing technology and letting kids muck around with gaming and the internet early in life and I really do believe that coding should be a required subject in school…the other part of me just hopes she wants to be a botanist.

Just be my little nature girl, Bug! I’ll try to be more patient with your leaf bits.