With a mischievous giggle, my middle daughter announced, "I'm Arthur!" Not to be confused with an author. This is the same child who refused to be called anything other than Toby for nearly two years - and Toothless (How to Train your Dragon, anyone?) for a year prior.
"And why are you Arthur?" I asked. No, I did not stop making dinner or even sit down for this conversation. It's a routine stop on her daily ramblings. Fairy tales are mere baby food when it comes to the stories we're asked to swallow from this imaginative seven-year-old.
"Well, Clarissa Kae, is taken. So what else am I supposed to go by?" Yes, she rolled her eyes like a teenager before slapping her recently finished book on the counter. "I'm an author. Besides, everyone thinks I'm cute. I don't want to be cute, I want to be an author."
There are stacks upon stacks of books rich with vibrant characters and fantastic worlds - each penned by a recently chosen nom de plume.
At night, when children are lulled to sleep by stories whispered from an adult voice and written with an adult hand, my daughter tells me her story, her version of the day. There are seven-year-old giggles just before the punchline or gasps before the surprise. But it is creative. It is beautiful.
I'm grateful for my Arthur.
And Toby, Toothless, Rose...and whoever I'll meet tomorrow.