Lauren often describes her little sister this way: "She's such a ham!"
Lately other family members and friends have been using the same expression.
I'm not sure why.
Maybe it's things like the day at the beach when she raced into the condo's living room, where most of the family was gathered.
"Hey guys!" she said excitedly. "Guess WHAT? Here I am!"
Or the day Lance picked her up and she began patting him on the shoulder.
"I love my Daddy," she told her grandparents. "He's a good boy."
Or the way she plays to a crowd. She plays peek-a-boo with people sitting behind us in church and introduces herself to perfect strangers wherever we go. The other day, perhaps fearing she had been impolite, she interrupted a story she was telling our next-door neighbor to point to me and say, "This is Susan."
"She's met me before," I said in mock exasperation as Melinda laughed.
One day, probably a year ago, we were sitting in the Nashville airport waiting for a delayed flight home. Ting Ting began working to catch the eye of a young man sitting across from us, then grinned at the elderly couple sitting next to him and began chatting them up. "She ought to run for mayor!" the man told us. Then, looking around and seeing all eyes on her, she cued the music.
"Bus, Mama!" she commanded, moving her hands in circles so she could enact "The Wheels on the Bus go 'Round and 'Round" as I sang for her.
She was still pretty little then. If she tried that today, I'd tell her to sing the song herself.
Heaven knows she's not shy.