Lucy loves mysteries, secrets, and surprises. Every since she was a baby, I would say, "Let me tell you a secret," and then whisper something in her ear. Most of the stuff she does (and wants me to know about) she'll usually lead me to and say, "Close your eyes first!" and will then do a big reveal.
She loves the Boxcar Children mysteries and the Strawberry Shortcake Sea mystery movie (say that three times fast). [Side note: Here is yet another difference between boys and girls. Once we were visiting my in-laws, and our three nephews were there also. Lucy wanted me to read from the Strawberry Shortcake Treasury, and since the boys love books too they wanted to get in on the story. The mystery builds--well, as much as a Strawberry Shortcake mystery can--who is stealing the seaberries from Coco Calypso? The friends keep catching a glimpse of a mysterious figure in the water. "It's a SHARK!" yelled Ryne, my 5-year-old nephew. "Nooooo," said Lucy reprovingly. "It's a little mermaid named Seaberry Delight." Yeah, those boys totally lost interest after that.]
When Lucy was still in school the class learned about pirates, made secret maps, and had a treasure hunt. That really set her off. Since then, she busily gets out paper and markers and makes secret surprise pictures for me and hides them on my pillow or writes out secret soup recipes and painstakingly wraps them up for my mom.
One day she sat down with her supplies and made a treasure map for Darren. I helped her with some of the words. "X Marks the Spot" it said (and then was covered with Xs). Then she wrote a note and slipped it under the door to his basement office. "I have taken your treasure box. Elaine did it. You will need this map." I ran down to whisper what was going on. "I have a treasure box?" he asked. "Just go with it," I hissed. He then got the map covered with Xs, followed it with her guidance through the house, and finally found the surprise she had hidden for him--a paper cone with silk flowers hung behind our bedroom door.
It's a funny little quirk she has, and it's actually very fun to indulge (usually). Her imagination is always running away with her, which is what everyone used to say about me when I was little so I get that. It can, however, occasionally be a little disconcerting as I discovered the other night. It was dark, and I walked around the bed to my bedside table to turn on the light. This is what was waiting for me. Let me tell you first, it's 90% less alarming in the light, in a photo, when you're expecting it:
Yes. That's Shirley Temple, barefoot, wearing a Cinderella crown and waving at me. In the dark. I'm not sure why. It pretty much scared the pants off me. Darren found it absolutely hilarious. "You have to take a picture of that for the blog," he said.
So there it is. There hasn't been any explanation of why or how she got there either. I will let you know whatever I find out.
Edited to add: This afternoon I asked Lucy why Shirley was on my bedside table. "Because she is the Queen of England." "Well, what is the Queen of England doing on my bedside table?" "She's overseeing things in the prison." Alrighty then.