Today is Fang Fang’s birthday. After today, he will be a three-year-old child.
“Mom, are you going to give me a present for my birthday?”
When Jiahui got up in the morning, Fang Fang asked Jiahui with an expectant face.
“You’re so young, and you still know how to ask for a present? Then tell me, what do you want as a present? “
A few months ago, when Yingbao had her birthday, Jiahui made her a little pink bunny hairband, saying it was a gift for her, and that it would only be given to her on her birthday, so Fang Fang probably kept it in mind until his own birthday and was too excited to ask Jiahui for it.
Jiahui asked Fang Fang what he wanted as a gift, and he thought about it for half a day before finally jumping up and hooking Jiahui’s neck with a smile and saying “I want a kiss from Mommy, and I want Mommy to sleep with me tonight.”
He has been sleeping with his older brother, Heidan since he was 2. Zhao Donglin’s argument is that boys should be independent as early as possible and not sleep with their parents for long periods of time.
Jiahui believes that it was not the only reason why Zhao Donglin let his two-year-old son sleep with Heidan independently. ……
When Jiahui took Fang Fang into the dining room, the family was already sitting at the table.
“Good morning, Grandma! Good morning, Dad! Good morning, second uncle! Good morning, Auntie! Good morning, brother! Good morning, sister! “
Fang Fang shouted one by one, and everyone answered with a smile. Zhang Qiaoer picked him up from the ground.
“Fang Fang, look what Grandma has cooked for you; lotus eggs. We always eat lotus eggs on our birthdays.”
This is a rule in the old Zhao family. Eating eggs on birthdays is a small ritual in a not-so-rich life.
“Thank you, Grandma. I love Grandma the most.”
He kissed Zhang Qiao’er on the cheek, making Zhang Qiao’er happy and making her eyes narrow with laughter.
The Zhao family’s breakfast is quite sumptuous: rice porridge, rolls, and pickles, and the children have a small bowl of milk, which Jiahui ordered for the children after they entered the city.
At first, the children did not like the taste, but every time they drank half a spoonful of brown sugar, they got used to it. Moreover, Jiahui said that drinking more milk would not only make them grow taller but also make them smarter.
Fang Fang sat on the chair, shaking his legs and eating poached eggs. After eating for a while, he slipped down from the chair and had to carry the bowl.
“Hey, baby, what are you doing with the bowl? You’re small, you can’t hold it. “
“I want to give the egg to my brother.”
Except for Jiahui, Heidan was the one person in the family he liked the most because Heidan was the one who brought him up. He taught him to talk, read words, recite ancient poems, and sing; he also told him stories in bed at night.
Heidan swallowed the last bite of the pancake. He smiled and shook his head. “I don’t need it. I’m already full. You can eat it yourself.”
Fang Fang refused to eat it and insisted on sharing an egg with him.
Shitou deliberately asked, “Fang Fang, I am also your brother. Why don’t you share an egg with me?”
“I only have one left.”
Putting aside the fear that his brother Shitou would really “steal” his egg, he used his body to “protect” the bowl, just like a chicken protecting its food, and this action matched his round face, which was very cute.
“Fang Fang, auntie wants to eat too. Will you give it to auntie?”
“Fang Fang, grandma also wants to eat. Do you want to give it to grandma?”
Fang Fang looked at them and cried out.
“I just want to give it to my brother. I will give it to my brother and no one else.
Heidan went over and hugged Fang Fang. He patted him and coaxed him softly, “Fang Fang, don’t cry. Brother is full. I’ll feed you this egg and finish it, okay?”
The cries of the child were held back, but his voice was still a bit choked up.
“Brother …… uh …… don’t eat?”
Heidan nodded, “Well, since Brother drank milk and ate pancakes, I really can’t eat anymore. Can Fang Fang help brother finish this, okay?”
Fang Fang wiped his tears, gave a heavy hum, opened his mouth, and waited for his brother to feed him.
The little birthday boy finally stopped crying. Meixiang was scared and patted her heart. She couldn’t bear to hear the child cry. As soon as he cried, she felt at a loss and didn’t know how to coax him.
After Heidan fed Fang Fang, he carried his school bags with Shitou and Yingbao to go to school. Fang Fang followed them and took them outside the gate.
“Brothers and sisters, you come back early. Today is my birthday. My mother will make delicious foods.
He waved as he spoke, amusing passers-by and praising him for his cleverness and loveliness.
“Fang Fang, what do you want? Okay? “Little Aunt will buy it as an apology, okay?”
Meixiang is still feeling guilty for making Fang Fang cry during breakfast. Of course, she had planned to buy Fang Fang a gift today. Her brother and sister-in-law were so good to her, and she had nothing to repay them but to treat her nephew better.
When he got up, he told Jiahui that the gift he wanted was a kiss from his mother, and he wanted to sleep with her. He changed his words with Meixiang.
“Auntie, I want fireworks just like what my brother used to play with.”
Before the Chinese New Year, the family went back to their hometown. Zhao Donglin bought a lot of fireworks from the city and went back to let the children play with them. During the Chinese New Year, when it was dark, one person took a few sticks in his hand and lit a fire. The children were very happy. Fang Fang also wanted to play with his brothers, but Jiahui disagreed and said that he was still young and couldn’t play together until he was as old as his brothers.
Fang Fang has been looking forward to growing up quickly so that he can play fireworks with his brothers. Today was his birthday. Grandma said he would be one year older after his birthday, so now he has grown up and can play with fireworks!
Meixiang gave a silent smile. She thought he wanted more food or toys to put on top. Unexpectedly, his favorite gift was fireworks. She didn’t dare buy this for her little nephew.
“Fang Fang, this is not good. Although you have grown up by one year compared with last year, you are still younger than your brothers, so you still can’t play. You have to be as big as your brothers. “
Fang Fang put on a disappointed look and said, “When will I grow up to be as big as my brothers?”
Meixiang narrowed her eyes and patted the head of Fang Fang. She softly comforted, “As long as Fang Fang eats hard and sleeps hard, soon you can catch up with your brothers and sisters, so Fang Fang needs to cheer up.”
After saying that, Meixiang pulled the strap of the school bag and waved goodbye to Fang Fang.
I’ll buy you a toy that boys enjoy playing with when your aunt returns to school.
Poor Fang Fang. At this time, he still does not understand that he can never grow as big as his brother in this life, because his brother will always be bigger than him.
In the evening, Fang Fang received many birthday gifts: an aunt’s toy, a second uncle’s gyroscope, grandmother’s clothes and shoes, god grandparents’ Parker pens, and the big brother gave Fang Fang’s favorite comic strip; the second brother gave his own treasured slingshot, and his sister gave him a painting.
“Mom and Dad, what are you going to give me?”
Fang Fang liked every gift, but he remembered that his mom and dad didn’t give him a gift.
“Didn’t you say that Mommy only needs to kiss you as a gift?”
Jiahui asked on purpose, and Fang Fang thought about it, but it seemed that he had indeed said so.
“Okay then, mommy, kiss me and I will count it as a gift.”
With that, he nodded his cheek and motioned for his mother to kiss him. Jiahui really went to him and cupped his little face and kissed him.
“What about dad? “Dad didn’t prepare a gift for me.
Zhao Donglin smiled lightly and took out a ball from behind him, drawing the children’s eyes to it.
“Big Uncle’s gift is a ball!”
This is a real leather ball. There is no child who does not like leather balls. Fang Fang cheerfully hugged the leather ball in his arms, looking very happy.
“Daddy, you’re really my good daddy!”
Zhao Donglin smiled as he picked up his little son and lifted him up to his head.
“Now you know Daddy is good. He is the one who says he hates Daddy all day long.”
“Not at all. I like my daddy the most. Of course, I like my mommy the most, I like my brother the most, I like grandma the most…
Everyone covered their mouths and was happy. Heidan also watched them. His mood may be more complicated. On the one hand, he really loved his brother. On the other hand, he also envied his father’s intimacy with his brother, which he rarely had.
His father was in the army when he was born, and he couldn’t see his father for a long time. Later, he saw him often, but his parents were divorced.
Because of the early understanding of the situations, he could not show a childlike innocence like Fang Fang, but he wished he could live like his brother.
Meixiang’s thesis was completed very smoothly. The thesis requirements in her college were not high. The focus was still on teaching. Meixiang’s scores are more than 90 points.
“Student Zhao Meixiang, congratulations on your successful graduation. In the future, you will be a glorious people’s teacher. “
The principal gave each student a certificate of completion and took a group photo with the students.
“Wu Dong Provincial Teacher Training College, all the teachers, and students of the class of 1977 take a group photo. Taken on June 21, 1979. “
This is the memory of youth, this is the journey of dreams. They have experienced a different era. Their youth is the richness and beauty that others have not experienced.
“I can’t bear it. Everyone is going to say goodbye soon. “
“Who says it’s not? The day I entered the school, it felt like yesterday. “
Everything is vivid.
“In fact, it’s OK. Many people are not together. Even if they are not together, they still have a lot of opportunities to meet in the future. “
“Yes, anyway, I will stay in the provincial capital. Remember to find me when you come back. I’ll invite you to dinner. “
“That’s necessary. You’re the host. You have to show the spirit of the host. “
Meixiang looked at her classmates with a smile on her face as they spoke, feeling that this moment was worth remembering for a lifetime.
Now that she has graduated, she has to go to the new school to report. It won’t be long before the school has a summer vacation. Jiahui is still very envious of this.
“There are three months of paid holidays a year. Meixiang, I have begun to envy your work. “
Meixiang did not even care to smile. Her sister-in-law is not envious; if her sister-in-law wanted to be a teacher, it would be easy for her; she is so good at English that many schools must be lining up to hire her.
But my sister-in-law was restless in nature. If she was a little idle, she would have to find something to do. Just like now, while taking classes, she was doing translation work. Occasionally, she would use the sewing machine to make small things, such as dolls, key bags, and head flowers. It is said that these things are liked by little girls and must be easy to sell.
Meixiang can’t help but shake her head. Energetic people can be really scary, and no matter what it is, in their eyes, it can turn into RMB. This is indeed a remarkable skill.
Hello, I'm Lucia, and I love novels with themes from the 70s, 80s, and ancient eras. Therefore, I will mainly focus on translating novels from these time periods. If you have any recommendations for novels you'd like me to read and translate, please don't hesitate to send me a direct message on my Discord. Thank you!