Abby’s room is connected to mine by a Jack and Jill bathroom, and she almost always leaves the door open in the middle of the night. This morning, I am woken by loud whispers; I can hear Bean explaining that if she insists on sleeping with the covers over her head (she’s done this since she was a baby) it will kill her. He’s very concerned. She explains to him that the blankets crocheted by grandma have enough holes that she can breathe plenty of fresh air, leaving him satisfied that she isn’t in mortal danger.
I smile and roll over under my own warm covers.
He climbs into bed next to her, and begins to explain how vultures barf up their food to eat it twice, and that vulture barf is the same color as the pink on one of her blankets. Now I’m stifling a giggle. Abby, bless her patient heart, listens to him attentively, before tactfully suggesting they read The Very Busy Spider. She sleeps with a pile of books in her bed, and Eric Carle is always popular. Bean nestles in next to her, and she starts to read aloud to him. The cadence of her tiny five-year old voice sounding out the familiar words is sweet and lilting, and I cannot imagine anything I’d rather hear at that moment than my daughter reading to her big brother.
Bean interrupts her every sentence or so to tell her some fact about spiders, and she listens patiently before picking up the thread where she left off. They finish the spider book, and she begins to read The Very Hungry Caterpillar, but Bean is making her laugh too much now and they dissolve into fits of giggles.