This morning when I was talking to my nephew K, the topic of treasure came up. Now, K is a very typical five-year-old boy in some respects, including the fact that he adores Indiana Jones, Star Wars, and all things relate thereunto (especially if combined with legos- he gave me a sticker of a lego Yoda and a lego Chewbacca this afternoon. I might put them on my research notebook at work . . .). Now, of course, one of the main themes in Indiana Jones is treasure. So my cousin Aly told K that I would take him on a treasure hunt and his eyes lit up. After I raised my eyebrow at Aly (just one, since it does sound pretty fun to make a treasure hunt for a nephew), K began asking me about treasure hunts I'd been on in the past, and then he asked me if I'd ever found any treasure.
After a moment of contemplation, I told him that I had found a lot of treasure in my life, but that I wasn't sure it was the same thing he was talking about. He politely asked me to describe it anyway, and so I began telling him that when I go hiking in the mountains and I find a meadow filled with flowers, I consider that a treasure. When I step outside in the evening and see a beautiful sunset, I consider that a treasure. Spending time with people I love is a treasure.
I wasn't sure if that made any kind of impression on him, because then he told me that he wanted to go hiking with a pickaxe to see if we could dig anything up.
However, later that day, we were eating pizza together on the front porch. K told me how much he loved spending time with his aunts and uncles and then paused for a moment and asked me "I think that is a . . . could that be a treasure for me?"
I was delighted, and explained that anything that brings him joy can be a treasure. He nodded and said, "Okay, it's a treasure, then."
A little while later, the combined effects of the rainy day, the beautiful colors of the flowers and the antics of my nephews made me giggle in delight. When K wanted to know what was so funny, I told him that this kind of day just makes me happy inside. He nodded sagely and said, "so that's a treasure for you, then."
Wow. This kid packs a punch sometimes. Indeed, K, beautiful days with people I love are a treasure for me. Thank you for reminding me that my treasure is all around me, blessed boy. What a treasure my sweet little nephew is.