Pretty piggies and big dreams

She sees the rainbow in bottles, being painted onto their toes.

"Can I have painting, too?" Buttercup's voice is as hopeful as her voice.

My mom and sister have taken Buttercup with them to the library and have stopped at the salon for a pick-me-up while I am home writing. My Blackberry buzzes now with an incoming text message.

It's my sister, Pati.

"Can Buttercup get a pedicure? Just lotion and color?"

I smile, sad for just a moment I am not there to see my little girl get her first big girl pedi.

"Sure," I write back. "Let her have fun."

And she does.

The color is a sheer pink, almost unnoticeable. But in her eyes, her little piggies are a shining beacon, signaling her new status as an almost-three-year-old.

Go ahead and ask her . I do every night.

"Are you still Mama's baby?"

"No," she says. "I'm a big girl now."

Now pardon me while I go cry into a pint of Ben and Jerry's.

My baby isn't a baby anymore.