Benjamin is at a most wondrous age right now. His red hair falls into his eyes, around his face, and gives him an impish look that matches his personality.
He has an aura of wonder about him. He has a tie to bugs and critters and animals and "all creatures of our God and King." He was the first kid to be able to coax our cat into the open during the day; Ben's little body that is always moving stops and rests as he gentle strokes her back. The other day Ben arrived home from school and announced he had a new pet: Catty the caterpillar. He opened his hands to reveal the pet he'd found at lunch and had secretly tended through the afternoon of school. We took off, the two of us, to the store to find a small bug container, which he filled with sticks and leaves and flowers for his beloved pet. (Alas she lasted but a few hours before an "outing" ended with her falling through the deck boards.)
He also has a special tie with the husband and wife, Tom and Shelley Wolf, who were his Sunday school teachers when he was 2 and 3. Even at this young age, I can see that these are Ben's kind of people. They are vegans; Ben already doesn't like to eat meat. They love all things earth and natural and off the grid - they live in a home built into the ground lined with tire walls and heated by woodstoves; Ben loves to be in the wild and woods. Tom is a musician (drummer); Ben has a natural musical ability in a little sweet soprano voice. They ride a motorcycle; Ben is in awe and wants and orange helmet so he can ride on the back. Tom and Shelley took to Ben, our little rascal; Ben always sits with them on Sundays during the main service, and now and then they take him out to see a movie. While I know James and I are the main influences in Ben's life, I strongly desire other people to be in our village to help our children grow. Tom is definitely this for Ben.
While there are endless shenanigans, and unending bouts of teasing of Juliette, he has a grin that melts hearts. He loves to cuddle and read with me, and his daddy is his hero. Ben loves to have that one on one time with either of us. We love this little guy with everything in us.