I remember as far back as around 18 months old. There was a pecan tree in our back yard. My mother gave me a small brown paper bag, sat on a stone fence surrounding the yard, and watched as I filled the bag with pecans. Every few inches, I would walk over to my mother and say, "look, Mommy." I remember the feeling of purpose and of excitement, and especially of the palpable love my mother felt watching me. My aunt came to our house later, and I rushed to take the bag and to show her. I felt pride, as an 18 month old experiences pride. I enjoy recalling this early experience between just my mother and myself, of her watching me gather pecans. I can still feel the delight of her undivided attention and of my busy contentment in gathering the fruit of early love and shared joy.