Since I have SO many little gems to share....a thanksgiving reference it is.
Thanksgiving was a quiet affair this year. We had planned to go to Florida to visit Grampa Tom and Annie, but when we realize the job hunt was going to take longer than we thought, we made the call to postpone the trip. After a few tears (mine, at the thought of no pina coladas at the Don CeSar) we planned a small dinner for just the 4 of us. And I couldn't have imagined how nice it would be! I made the whole turkey feast, with all the trimmings (Jane is helping roll out the hough for some tasty parmesan straws...a new recipe, but one we're keeping, they were so yummy). We watched the parade, made cinnamon rolls, took a little nap, did an art project together (this was a BIG hit...little foam Christmas trees, some sticker ornaments and sequins...home run.) and sat down to dinner. For kids who eat nothing but bread and candy, they were so excited about turkey dinner. Jane had THREE helpings of turkey. THREE. Sam had THREE crescent rolls. And all of his cranberry sauce. And exactly one ounce of masked potato, candied yams, and turkey. Combined. There was one lovely little moment before we ate, when Sam looked at us and said, "Can we say grace?" We are not a family who says grace before dinner, and I said, "sure! Sam, why don't YOU say grace?" he said, "ME? okay. GRACE." Oh, how we laughed. I helped him out with a whispered, "God bless this food, God bless our family." But I won't ever forget that. "Okay. GRACE."
We're full on into Christmas planning now, and if the kids were excited about it LAST year, it's a whole new level this year. I am acutely aware that these years of blind belief, of total faith in that direct correlation of being good = presents on Christmas morning, that I am doing my darnedest to keep it going! We made Christmas lists, they each chose 5 things. Sam has 3 big dinosaur wishes, shark dvds and some bionicles. Jane wants princess things, some puzzles, and barbies. I am dreading the days when their lists consist of small expensive electronics, or maybe Jane will just ask for cash. Who knows.
One of Sam's list items is a Prehistoric Puppet. I have to say, this is right up his alley. It was a last minute addition to the list, but has become ALL he can talk about. I talk a lot with him about the fact that jsut because he put it on his list doesn't mean he'll DEFINITELY get it (even though it has indeed already been ordered)--this is my effort to try to keep them from the mindset of expecting that they will get everything they ask for. Although, who are we kidding here, they will. ANyway, I came downstairs last week and found Sam on the cpmputer (pretty normal, and extra cute, he is typically in a t-shirt and underwear, that true look of an early morning little boy) and he had the Prehistoric Puppet site up, specifically the "contact us" page. He had filled in every field, with total jibberish, with the exception of the message field, where he wrote, almost perfectly:
"plese give me a spinosaurs. Sam"
I asked what he was doing, and told him I thought that Santa was still his best bet for getting one. He said, "I know, I just want them to know I really want it too."
I was caught between that feeling of incredulity that he thought to do it, and impressed that he wants the toy enough to try and cover all of his bases.
I absolutely CAN NOT WAIT to see his face on Christmas morning when he lays eyes on that T. Rex.
Speaking of Dinosaurs, there was a piece on 60 minutes a few weeks ago about the paleontologist that Sam Neill's Jurassic Park character was modeled after. The 60 minutes segment was about how this particular guy is a controversial scientist because he does things like break dinosaur bones and dissolve them to see what is inside...it was a very interesting piece, to say the least. As it was starting, we called Sam in to see it. The face of the paleontologist comes on the screen and Sam says, ""It's Horner!" What? "It's Jack Horner!" and sure enough, the narrator comes on and says "This is paleontologist Jack Horner...blah blah blah" and Sam was smiling away. THAT is the level of dinosaur nerd-dom that we live in. He not only knows EVERY dinosaur, he also knows all of the paleontologists too. That's my boy.
Hockey is in full swing. Did I ever tell you that Sam is playing hockey, world? We signed him up for the instructional league at Brown University (and the rink is so beautiful there) and he started skating last month. You can't imagine how hard it was for me to watch that first time--he was hanging on to the crates for dear life, feet flailing all over the place. Not that he cared--he thought it was awesome. The next week, he was much more comfortable with the crates, was able to do more actual skating and less trynottofalldowning. He skates on Saturdays AND Sundays, which is a big help, I think, and he gets to skate with his dad, which they BOTH love. The next week, he was FLYING around the ice with his crates, and starting to learn to balance without it. And the last time he was on the ice, he was without the crate all together. Skating. By himself. Amazing. And he went into the locker room after and said, "See ya later, stinkin' crates!"
I try to be there every time too, though photo shoots cut into my hockey time a lot. Jane loves to be there watching too. I think that this winter I am going to try and take Jane to the outdoor rink downtown and teach HER how to skate too. She gets excited when it's time to go watch Sam, and can NEVER remember that it is called an "ice rink". She calls it the "ice berg". Or, just "the berg". And sometimes we get to watch the zamboni clean the ice, which she loooves watching. The first time she saw it, she was so excited, I said, "Jane, do you know what that is?" She said, "YES!!! IT'S THE ICEBERG BUS!!!!"
Of course it is, what was I thinking??
Back to editing for me, world....hoping that things slow down enough to be able to do some more regular blogging...until then, I bid you goodnight!