Ryan was thirsty after school today. As I navigated through a light dusting of snow, I passed him a half-full bottle of water that had been hanging out in my car for a couple of days. The cold from the night before had frozen some of the water, which led us to a discussion about how ice is formed.
Once Ryan felt he had a thorough understanding of the relationship between water and ice, garnered from no less than 25 questions, he turned his attention to the ice’s shape.
“The ice block in that bottle is round, like a cookie.”
“Yep, it is,” I confirmed. “That’s because the water bottle is round. The water froze in the same shape as the bottle.”
“Ohhhhh, right! So if we had a square bottle, it would make square ice. And if we had a triangle bottle, it would make triangle ice. Hahahaha!”
I silently reflected for a moment on that thought, particularly on our society’s complete lack of triangle water bottles. I wondered whether there might be a market for such a thing (four-year-olds, perhaps?) or how one might drink from a triangle-shaped spout (carefully, I suppose).
In my silence, though, an even bigger thought occurred to Ryan: “If we were REALLY tiny, we could ice-skate on the ice in the bottle!”
My mind officially blown, I allowed him to see through this train of thought on his own. He quickly decided that becoming so small might not be such a good idea because “when we tried to sleep in our beds, we would get lost in our sheets. And then we wouldn’t be able to find each other!”
A natural problem-solver, he then surmised that this could be remedied by moving from our big house to his little playhouse in the backyard. Although, one more obstacle: We might be too small to open the door.
“Oh, I have an idea!” he exclaimed, a cartoonish lightbulb shining over his head. “We’ll just CLIMB the door. That would perfect.”
We would have to find ourselves a tiny TV, we decided, and new clothing because ours would be too big. But we were pretty sure that overall, we could make this work.
Now if only I could figure out a way to bottle up his preschooler imagination.