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the beauty of a child

When Harvey was a few days old, he was a pretty good-looking baby. A few weeks later, though, he was suffering from a terrible case of baby acne that left his cheeks red and pitted; between that and his patchy hair there weren't many pictures taken of him for a little while. It is ever thus. Our children are always beloved, but heaven knows they aren't always beautiful.

I sure know I wasn't. The second-grade picture is a reasonable showing, but by fourth I was showing a little too much buck teeth. The "rat-tail" hairdo didn't help me in middle school, nor did the braces and acne freshman year in high school. If Leah is to be believed, though, I made something of a recovery a few years after that.

These days with Harvey the cycle between beauty and... otherwise... is a matter of weeks or even days. He managed to get some good genes from somewhere (must have been his mama) so he's generally doing alright, but as I noted before he tends not to take the sort of care with his appearance that you'd expect from a model. Scratches, food smudges, and plain dirt are long-time occupants of his face, and lately he's branched out to magic marker as well (during the Christmas Eve church service he all unseen applied a very Robert Smith-looking smear of orange around his lips). Worst of all, though, are the weepy eyes that are the most notable feature of his current cold. Not only is the eye-goop and clumpy eyelash look a little off-putting, the irritation (and interrupted sleep!) have given him more droop to the eyes than usual. The J Crew catalog would not have him in his current state. Ah well, he'll soon be restored to beauty.

As for Zion, he's still working the cheeks and the smile, and he's lately added a bit of tongue-sticking-out (not yet captured on film), so he's pretty much set for cuteness. Especially with the cheeks.

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