On Beauty

On a recent Friday afternoon, my son was home from school. He’d been sick on Thursday (fever, chills, lethargy, vomiting… the works!) and while he was symptom free on Friday, he still needed to be home due to the 24-hour-rule.

I worked Friday morning while he hung out with my husband who was already off due to a scheduled piano delivery. After lunch, my son and I both needed a walk since we’d been cooped up on Thursday. The day coincided with our neighborhood garage sales. We took a tour of five sales in a one mile area.

After visiting the last sale, he told me he had found something beautiful. He wanted to go back to the first sale we had visited. It was 6 or so houses down from ours. He, however, wanted to stop at home on the way to get his coin purse since we hadn’t brought any money with us.  He put $1 in assorted coins in his coin purse.

As we walked back into the garage sale for round 2, he informed the home owners that they had the most beautiful things for sale. He was effuse in his praise.

It didn’t surprise me when we entered the garage that his attention was focused on a collection of duck-themed items. (The home owner’s mother was moving to assisted living and the garage sale contents are her mother’s. The mother loves ducks, wind-up snow globe music boxes, and inflatable lawn decorations for every holiday under the sun.)

Since my son was quite young he’s loved watching ducks, geese, and birds. We read the Gossie stories by Olivier Dunrea countless times. He loves bath ducks. He notices the seagulls on the sports fields at Memorial High School on our morning drive to school and proclaims they are having morning meetings. His love of ducks eventually led me to read Moby Duck by Donovan Hohn for my enjoyment. My reading of that was preceded by reading Eric Carle’s 10 Little Rubber Ducks aloud to him.

He mulled over which duck was most beautiful for about 10 minutes. There was a very long duck planter with a mother flanked by ducklings. There were tiny decoy-like ducks about 2 inches long. There was a stuffed mallard. There were framed fabric wall hangings of ducks. There were so many ducks. My son debated the merits of a couple of small wooden ducks about 6 inches long and 4-5 inches high. He finally settled on one. (See picture below.)

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He paid for the duck and carefully counted out $1. He counted 99 cents. The proprietors were not about to argue with his math.

Meet Little Ducky Bluegrass. Newest member of the Conners Family. Deemed the most beautiful duck (at least at this garage sale). Immortalized in glitter glue and craft stick art (see picture below).

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Kids see beauty in the most awesome places. Let them see it. Help them recognize it. Allow them to recognize beauty in places/things you may not consider beautiful.

Recognize that the true beauty is in the spirit of children.

As I write, Little Ducky Bluegrass is fast asleep in bed with a very happy nearly 6-year-old. Who said a wooden duck couldn’t be cuddly?

Good night, beautiful Little Ducky Bluegrass. Goodnight beautiful child!

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One Response to On Beauty

  1. Joan June 19, 2015 at 1:19 am #

    Love your essay, Laura!! AND love the fact that he loves birds and beautiful things. All kids are beautiful….the little ones AND the grown up ones 😉

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