Autumn has always been my favorite time of year. Maybe it’s because the weather is cooling; maybe it’s because my birthday falls in October; or most likely, it’s because of the beautiful colors one can see in our home area of Pennsylvania and New Jersey. I remember when I lived in Jordan and was asked what my favorite season was. A few people told me that “autumn” is a strange answer. There really wasn’t anything too special about autumn in Amman, and it just signaled the beginning of the cold, rainy weather. If my Jordanian friends could see the fall foliage in my neck of the woods, however, they would understand my preference.
I may be developing a new favorite season, and if so, it is thanks to my two little girls, Emma and Hannah. Emma, at 3½, pretty much knows all her colors, but Hannah (almost 2) is just learning to differentiate what is green, blue, purple, pink, orange, etc. It seems she knows what some of them are, but just when we think she’s getting it, we ask her what color the tree is and she says, “Blue.” Oh well. It takes time.
The other day, as we were walking through our neighborhood taking Emma to her preschool, one of us noticed some of the colorful flowers that have begun to bloom here in Maadi. I have never been a big fan of plants and flowers and don’t know the names of them, but for the first time, I started to notice the colors surrounding us. As we walked along, the girls excitedly pointed out the pink and orange and purple flowers. After a few minutes Hannah, especially, got excited every time she saw a color. “Look Mommy!” she would exclaim. Her enthusiasm is so wonderful as she kicks her feet in the stroller and points toward the tree, “Pink!” What a wonderful way to learn colors! Of course, God’s painting involves more than basic colors, and I find myself saying, “Well, yes, that is kind of purpley-pink,” or, “yellowish-orange,” or whatever, but hopefully she will slowly get the idea.
Thanks to my girls for showing me some of the natural beauty that surrounds us here in Maadi. I know we’re blessed being in this part of the city where there is grass and trees and flowers; it’s not the norm in Cairo. Of course, kids can see beauty in anything, and today as we walked, they were noticing the different colors of the cars parked along the street. I might rather have noticed the dents, scratches, and rust. It’s a good reminder to appreciate what you see around you … whether that’s God’s handiwork in creation, or man’s creativity in imitation!