“Mom! I saw a woodpecker!”

Every day when I pick up The Boy from school, I ask how his day was and what exciting things happened during the day. Usually, it’s fairly easy to get him to open up, but his favorite answer of late has been “I forgot”. When he does this, I generally start asking probing questions to help jog his memory, but I do need to give him the benefit of the doubt that, well, he may have actually forgotten that he did a craft that day with N’s mom.

[sigh]

Yesterday was his first day playing soccer with the Elementary school kids (“Graders”, he likes to call them) instead of the Montessori kids. He’s at that weird stage where he’s bigger and more capable than the Montessori kids but isn’t quite ready to hold his own with the Graders. So I was a bit nervous and anxious to hear how he did.

“I did okay at soccer,” he told me as we walked to the restroom. (It’s a long drive home.)

“Oh, good!” I replied, relieved. “Was it different that soccer on Fridays?”

“Um, a little bit,” he said. “Some of it is the same, and some of it is different.”

“What’s different?”

“Well, on Fridays, sometimes we did shoot-outs. But in Big Kid Soccer, you have to dribble and then shoot.”

“Ooh, that can be a bit challenging,” I acknowledged. It’s been a (long) while since I’ve played soccer, but I still remember those drills.

“But, Mom!” he exclaimed suddenly. “I saw a woodpecker!”

This was a big deal. Apparently, he spotted it during recess and called his teacher over to come look at it. The kids were all excited about seeing it, and he was a bit of a playground celebrity for finding it. After consulting a bird book (courtesy of my mother-in-law), he decided he either saw a Yellow-Bellied Sap Sucker (it’s October, after all, and the weather is turning a bit cooler… for Florida) or the far more common Red-Bellied Woodpecker.

Yellow-Bellied Sap Sucker

Red-Bellied Woodpecker

All he could remember was that it had a round head with red feathers on it and black feathers. Both birds fit the description.

I wish I could express how excited he was when he told Cute Husband and me about the other kids’ reactions when he pointed out the woodpecker. This find made it a great day for him – and provided easy conversation for all of us!

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