Sunday, June 14, 2009
Strawberries For Emma
Today my brother James and his wife Justine became parents. Sweet, six-pound Emma was born this morning at 9:15, right about the time I was eating sliced strawberries with a spoon. James called to tell me the news, but he had a hard time talking because he was crying. So then I began to cry, which made us laugh because we fancy ourselves "cool" and here we were, two blubbering messes. But it was a happy kind of crying, and my next bite of strawberries tasted even sweeter when we got off the phone. This is one of those times when life suddenly becomes the most precious thing you know, and all you want to do is hug someone. Or go out partying, but I already did that last night.
Anyway, all day long today I thought about my baby niece, and how, when she's much older, I will tell her that I was happily eating berries the moment she was born. I also thought about what book I should choose as my first to give her, and suddenly my breakfast made sense and that good feeling about life got even stronger.
Blueberries For Sal is Caldecott Medal-winning Robert McCloskey's brilliant tale of a little girl from Maine and her adventures in berry-picking with her mother one day. My mom must have read it to me a thousand times when I was a child, and I never got tired of it. In fact, it remains one of my favorite children's books of all time, and I think all tiny girls should have it read to them at night before bed.
So while little Emma will always remind me of strawberries, I hope one day, when she's much older, that I will remind her of blueberries, and the first book we read together as auntie and niece.
Posted by Catherine