A and I are driving to my sisters house for New Years Eve. We have the most adult conversation we have had in a while and it instantly makes me want to be young again. Back when there were no adult problems to deal with. Just imagination and freedom.
We arrive at my sisters house and Juby is sitting watching a movie. She ignores me at first as she is slightly shy and always takes a moment to warm up to me if she hasn't seen me in awhile. I know soon she'll be grabbing my hand and pulling me to her play room as she always does. Then she won't want to do anything but sit next to me. She gets attached fast and I love it.
I give her a big kiss and hug then hang out with the adults in the kitchen. She comes running in screaming and raw-ring like a monster. She wants attention now and I am happy to give it. She pokes her little face over the kitchen counter. She is tall but not tall enough to see over it yet. She digs her little sticky fingers into the chip bowl then to the cookie plate.
A and my brother in law start to play their guitars. Everyone gets riled and we start hollering and cheering. The boys play louder and Juby instantly gets excited. Her face glows in amazement as she laughs and sways from side to side. Her reaction was one of the sweetest ones I think I have seen.
We collect other instruments to play so we can be in a little band together. I choose a tambourine, Juby chooses her harmonica and her mother plays a wooden frog instrument. Together we dance and play music and in that moment I imagine that my everyday will be like this one day when I have a family.
My sister and I curl Juby's hair with little pieces of ribbon. I pretend that I am a salon owner and speak in an accent. She is amused with me. I think she likes when we turn things into little games for her to play. I tell her that her mother and her uncle are my assistants and give them silly names. I ask her what her name is and she says "Madame Jewel".
We play and snuggle on the bed until it's time for Juby to go to sleep. I give her as many kisses as I can. She is excited and doesn't want to go to bed so she yells from her bedroom down to the adults.
It's only 10pm and we are all tired and ready for sleep to take us under it's spell but we all hang on until 12 and then 2015 is over and it's now the start of something new. It's almost sad in a way because there are so many things to let go of when a new beginning is about to happen.
The next day we visit family. It's been awhile since I have seen all of my cousins and this new years we are all together. The house is full and every which way I turn there are deep conversations, laughs, food and kids. I play with Juby and her cousins and snap pictures of them.
I sit with Juby on the steps with her mamma and we tell stories. We pretend we are on a train and Juby and I take turns being the conductor. Juby see's my daisy iphone case and delightfully lets out an "ouuuuu". She feels the flowers and notices one it broken. She asks me how it happened and I tell her I dropped the phone and it broke. She pauses for a moment as if in deep thought then say's to me "Auntie Deet but you can find the piece and glue it back Okay?". I tell her she's a sweetheart and give her a big hug.
I talk to my cousins daughter about school and science. She's in grade one now and I ask her what she learns in class. She tells me she's learning about the calendar and how many days there are in a month. I tell her that I always liked my grade one teacher. She asks me who she was. I laugh a bit and tell her that it was a very long time ago.
It's already the third day of 2016 and to be honest I feel a sadness cast over me. It's getting colder out and I guess not being able to be in the sun is bad for our health. I know a lot of people get the winter blue's. There are a lot of things to think about this year and it feels like one of those years where I will have to put my big girl pants on. There are always so many decisions to make in life and it's hard to know which door to take.
A and I go for a night drive to help us get some air. We're both feeling under the weather. It's freezing now and you can feel it as soon as you step outside. It's something like -30. It always feels like the warm days go by too quickly and the cold ones seem to stay much longer.
I bring my camera with me because I think that maybe something will capture my attention and I'll want to photograph it. I feel a pull to photograph more of my life these days it's something that started last winter.
We stop in random places for pictures and drive along the beach side roads. We talk about how these roads make us feel nostalgic for some reason. Almost as if there's something about this place. A says they feel different from the rest of the city. Like you leave the city and enter into somewhere else. I agree with him. We imagine what it would be like to live in one of these beach houses. Next to the lake. How cold it would be in the winter and how busy it would be in the summer.
I take some video for no reason and we both decide to explore video. Even if it doesn't turn out great. Which it doesn't. We drive to the harbor. The tree's are strewn with lights and we explore. We find an outdoor ice rink and are delighted. Where did it come from? How did we not know about it? I instantly wish we had our skates with us.
We take some more video around a light display. There are many of them including a light carousel and a mini Eiffel tower. We have fun exploring them and shooting nonsense videos. The moment makes me smile and I am glad that the simple things in life can be so effective.
Our fingers are cold and the cold air gets to our bones. We are ready to leave and head back home. Our night drive continues.