The other day we spent the evening outside under the only shady tree we have, which happens to be in the front lawn. We sat under the tree and watched the birds, listened to the sounds of the neighborhood, and enjoyed the slightly cool breeze.
James was the first to venture out with me. After we'd been out a while, the tree dropped James a present: a tiny new branch with three leaves. He played with it and studied it closely for hours; pinching it between his thumb and fingers, twirling it, tasting it, dropping it, and examining it in every other way you could imagine.
James did not prefer the grass as it was too scratchy for his liking. He did, however, like to gaze up into the heights of the tree and watch the birds return to their nest and fly around the neighborhood.
When Maisie came out, she plopped right down on the grass but did not feel compelled to crawl around. Instead, she found the pokiest stick in arms' reach and proceeded to eat it. I tried to pull off the rough edges and nobs, and she did a great job swinging it around and beating the ground with it when the stick wasn't in her mouth.
After a while the winds picked up and the Cottonwood trees were causing me incredible allergies, so we went back inside and called it a night. James brought his leaf in and we kept it in a safe place, but Maisie discarded her stick in the yard in exchange for her hammer.
The following day it was even hotter, and coincidentally the babies had made an unplanned trip to my parent's home in Conifer for the day. They had a great time exploring the property both inside and out, and met a few friendly neighbors who have heard and read so much about the little dragons over the past year.
The babies do so well adapting to new experiences and environments. We can't believe that they are almost a year old; and what a year it has been.