I love watching my daughter’s imagination grow and blossom. Ever since we baked muffins together, her invisible food creations have gone wild. She sets up shop on her toddler couch with all her stacking cups, pans, etc. spread out and adds “ingredients” from the small stacking cups into a large one. Then she’ll stir with a crayon or any other small object nearby. I get to sample her creations frequently, and I must say, I’ve had plenty of invisible food in my life, but this is by far the best invisible food I’ve ever had. She truly cooks with love.

She has other routines for her cooking time, one where I’d swear she’s pretending to do a cooking show. We don’t have TV, so she’s never seen a cooking show. She’s probably just explaining things to her stuffed animals the way I explain it to her when she helps in the kitchen. She likes to share her creations with the stuffed animals and the dog, too. The dog has a hard time understanding what’s going on with this. She doesn’t get the concept of invisible food.

Owl’s imagination has also dreamed up a new game. Last night, she lay her stuffed bunny, Lavendar (yes, Spell Check, I prefer to use the old spelling), in the recliner and covered her with a wash cloth. She stroked the bunny’s ears and was pointing to the bunny and trying to tell me something. I asked if the bunny was cold, and Owl said, “Yeah.” We talked a bit more about keeping the bunny warm, but there was clearly something more she was trying to tell me. She didn’t have a word or sign for it, so it was a guessing game. We finally got to, “Is the bunny sick?” In her very serious way, she replied, “Yeah.” She was very concerned for her friend. Aha! She was processing seeing our friend in bed at the hospice and our cat being sick. Owl has never been sick herself. In 20 months of life outside the womb, she’s had a total of 3 colds, the last one lasting about 24 hours. She doesn’t know what it is to be sick, so she’s trying to figure it out with play.

I went over to help take care of Lavendar. We talked through how bunny was feeling and what we could do to help her feel better. We both gave Lavendar hugs and stroked her head and ears. Owl helped Lavendar drink from her sippy cup. Lavendar apparently felt a little better because Owl moved her over to the couch and lay her on top of the wash cloth. When it was Pajama Time, Lavendar needed to come with us, and I had to carry Owl upstairs so that she could take care of Lavendar.

It was very sweet how tender and gentle she was with her “sick” friend. By the time Owl went to sleep, Lavendar was feeling much better. When we got up this morning, Owl deemed that Lavendar (whom I was sure to tuck in next to Owl for the night) was all better. Brown Bear isn’t so lucky. He apparently has taken ill and needs extra love today. I hope it doesn’t turn into an epidemic, but I know that my sweet girl will take care of every one of her friends.

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