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This evening Bella and J decided they needed to bake chocolate chip cookies after dinner. We bought a big bag of chocolate chips yesterday – which I’m hoping will inspire me to get baking when this heatwave is over. About the same time as they brought out a mixing bowl I decided to put my yogurt-covered Joy into a bath.

The girls usually bath together. They giggle, wash each other, squabble over the empty shampoo bottle, and giggle some more. Every so often one of them bathes on their own. Bella enjoys having the whole tub to float in; Joy likes having the toys to herself, for about six minutes, and then wants to get out.

This evening as we hit the six minute mark and she stood pointing to her towel I remembered bath time with Bella when she was little. Some days when she was covered with sand or had been plastered with sun screen, or food, usually food, or when I just hadn’t come up with what we would do next I plunked her into a bath and watched her play in the water. And some days I got in too and we played together and washed each others’ hair.

Tonight Joy looked at me a little funny as I walked past the towel and got in beside her. And then we closed the shower curtain as if we were hiding away under a table tent somewhere, and she brought her face close to mine, peered into my eyes with hers shining, and gave a great, joyful giggle.

Tomorrow Bella will find out that Joy and I used the new strawberry shampoo – and might even volunteer to wash her hair.

– Pardon the photo, I need to stop using my ipod to take pictures. Laziness.