Saturday, June 21, 2008

Summer Kick-Off

So, this week has been interesting. I've really enjoyed having the kids around. It's not that I like "drama" but I have to say that I love the way the kids make my otherwise predictable and mundane life more dramatic. One of the things that I adore about my kids is their incredible uniqueness and zest for life. That's been displayed on so many levels this first week of summer break.
First, they discovered a new fort in the trees along the stream. I was promptly informed that at the entrance to the fort (a narrow trail through the blackberry bushes) is the "Dojo" and you "must leave the other world behind you when you enter."
"Okay. Cool." I thought.
Then, when the blackberry bushes opened up to a lush grassy area along the stream that has so much of a tree canopy overhead it seems dark in there even at 2 in the afternoon on a sunny June day, Lane whispered in a reverent, awe-inspired voice usually reserved for sacred places "This is Jungle West."
Suddenly, he screamed, "Cover!" and all of the kids threw themselves on to their stomachs and covered their heads (reminding me of an earthquake drill in school.) This was no earthquake drill though. As the kids moaned, "Mommmm- why didn't you get down?! They could have killed you!" I learned that there were crazy squirrel-like creatures that live in the trees overhead and that they had a sinister mission to "divide and conquer all intruders."
"We HAVE TO stick together, Mom", Brooke pleaded.
"Do they have a weakness?", I ask.
"They're scared of crawdads."
The kids then rushed to the stream and frantically began searching for crawdads. "Mom! Hurry and get over here to Checkpoint 2 and be on the lookout for crawdads." Lane exclaimed.
"No-this area isn't called Checkpoint 2! It's called Tiger Woods!" Tatton said.
"Nuh-huh! Tiger Woods is over there by the devil's club!" they argued.
"Pun intended?", I had to ask.
Tatton looked like he was holding back a "Duh!" and I was proud of his self-control when he simply said, "yeah." obviously proud of his play on words.
After they had finished giving me my tour and I had thankfully lived to tell about it (LOL) we went back to the house for a snack. My kids have been getting really into cooking lately and I try to let them be creative in the kitchen (within reason.) This particular day, Tatton asked if he could invent a new cookie recipe. He started off with a basic butter, sugar, flour, eggs mix but then he added some peanut butter, coconut, oats, and butterscotch chips. When he felt something was still missing he added a dash of pumpkin pie spice. I wasn't entirely sure about that combo, but I have to say they turned out pretty tasty. The kid has a really good track record in the kitchen. More often than not his experiments turn out better than I expect them to.
Oh, yeah... and on a side note.... let me tell you how HILARIOUS his commentary was as he added ingredients. "Now- to introduce the eggs to the mix. Mrs. Egg this is your blind date, Mr. Eggbert." and "Could somebody HELP me stir here? I'm not built for manual labor!" and when that didn't get him his requested help, "Okay. This is so like the Mother Hen baking bread. Ya'all are getting ANY!" LOL
Now.... If you're STILL reading this long winded blog, I'd just like to share one more thing. (Okay, who am I fooling? Ha! ha! Ha!) Anyway.... We bought Brooke a really cool new dollhouse for her birthday. Everything would have been fine if she had never let her brothers play with it. Poor Ken (well, Brooke calls him Elvis.) Barbie is now a single mother. Ken (Elvis) was the victim of an assault involving a red permanent marker and a toothpick. I told the boys that I was upset that I had basically wasted my money buying Ken (Elvis) only a few days earlier.
I mean, do you even realize how hard it was to find a classic white Ken doll? I'm not meaning to sound racist in any way, but Brooke's barbie "Mom" is white. The little kid dolls are white. All Toys'RUs had in stock the day I went to get the stuff for her dollhouse family were african-american Ken, hispanic Ken, and asian Ken. I thought about buying one of those, but I just felt like it seemed a little suspicious Barbie having all those blonde haired, blue eyed babies when their daddy was dark. I mean, what are the chances of Barbie having 6 fair kids when we all learned in science class that dark genes are supposed to be dominant?
I made a trip to Target and then to Walmart before I finally found a Ken that looked like he could actually be related to his offspring. And now he's lying naked with red "blood" covering 75% of his body... Sad. And to think I had just gone to all that trouble to find those kids their biological father. LOL In the boys's defense, they weren't being completely evil and sadistic. In a classic example of the way boys and girls play differently, the same Ken (Elvis) that Brooke used to push kids on the swing and read bedtime stories was having a slightly more exciting time with the boys and had been injured in his career as a rodeo cowboy.
I'm loving having the kids home all day. Sure, they don't get along and the fighting and tattling is already driving me crazy. But I'm having so much fun just being a witness to their creativity. Watch for more stories of their craziness throughout the summer. I'm sure it will be endless.

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