The Magic of Brunch
Written by
Tess Hardwick
June 2011
Written by
Tess Hardwick
June 2011

This morning around ten a.m I walked home from the gym with my five-year-old, our first Friday without school. She skipped, zigzagging, avoiding the cracks in the sidewalk representing hot lava, happy in her childhood game. I was in the moment, for once, instead of thinking about the plot of my latest novel or worrying about something I had to do when I got home. She looked up at me, light blue eyes, yellow ponytail, lean legs in shorts even though it is still in the 50's here in western Washington. "I'm hungry," she said.

"Should we have brunch when we get home?"

She stopped, peering at me with her nose scrunched at the bridge like it does when she's figuring something out for the first time. "What's brunch?"

"The meal between breakfast and lunch."

"Brunch, what a funny word." Then, a belly laugh, clapping her hands together in delight. She decided she would have pancakes and eggs, after I explained to her that for brunch one could have breakfast or lunch food.

Once home, she put on her apron and stirred the pancake batter, fetched the eggs from the fridge. She hummed and chattered, happy about something so simple, making eggs and pancakes with mom. "I love brunch," she said.

One of the joys of parenthood? Experiencing something we take for granted, that we've known about longer than we can remember, anew. Watching her enjoy the making and eating of a simple meal, no different from many meals eaten before in her young life, but special because she'd learned a new word to describe it.

I wonder how we might relish life if we watched the world through the eyes of the innocent instead of the taint of experience, of world weariness? What would we see? What would amaze us?

As she devoured her stack of pancakes and eggs, she said, "Brunch tastes so good, mommy."

And, I thought, yes, it does. But nothing compares to you, my love.

Let's be friends

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