We were singing Christmas carols tonight during Trinh's bath. I was trying out a scat version of "Silver Bells" (because I can't remember most of the words), and she wanted to know if "Jingle Bells" were also "Silver Bells". A logical question, and we managed to work "Jingle Bell Rock" into the answer for kicks.
Somewhere along the way we managed some brief harmony on a final note. It rang out, thanks to the less-than-dreadful acoustics in our bathroom; we shared a spellbound moment and that special smile which always seem to accompany a particularly nice echo. If you've sung any a cappella, you know what I mean.
She wanted to do that again. I did too. So I launched into an explanation of "sounds" (ooo, ahh, eee) in contrast to "notes" with a smattering of examples from the various Christmas carols we've been singing. She doesn't seem to have perfect pitch, but her ear knows it when she hears it. This pleases me more than I can possibly articulate.
Her attention span was running short, so I wrapped up with a flourish: O Holy Night, with a nod to Mr. Tanner. Just after the minor fall (but before the major lift), she laid her head on my chest, wrapped her little arms around me and snuggled close.
Despite a congested head, dodgy throat and lack of a regular singing routine, I sorta got into it, somehow managing not to wake Tài Tài sleeping just down the hall. When I finished the last round of falling on our knees, she slowly pulled back and looked into my eyes.
"Daddy," she said, "I remember when you used to sing that song to put me to sleep. Now I'm a big girl, but it still makes me fall asleep. It makes me feel warm."
She might not remember moments like this years from now. But hallelujah, I will.