This morning I latched hearts with my near-eleven-old-great-niece, whose psyche glimmered with mirth, spontaneity, and giftedness—all girl, with this winter’s sale of one-thousand-and-six-boxes of Girl Scout Cookies, under her belt.

Many years had passed since fashioning varied colors of clay into a basket of flowers and presenting them to me, but additional evidence of her thoughtfulness sit on my kitchen window sills and have cheered me. Besides the development of her artistic skills, her perfectly proportioned body, her thick red braids tied together at her lower back, her quickness of speech and movements enhance her unfolding. She is becoming her own person, an awesome process to hear about from her Minneapolis home.

Today’s gift was a can of cashew nuts and the unaffected smile from her heart that squiggled my toes. There’s nothing like a happy child. With every sinew in her body, she loves her life as it stretches before her, even the fifth grade.

She also loves chocolate, in whatever form.