December 2009 Archives

I ran to the store with Karenna and Jude this weekend on the way to my sister's house to make cookies.  As we left the parking lot, Jude initiated this little conversation out of the blue:

Jude: Mom, do you know why Santa doesn't give presents to parents?
Me: Why, Jude?
Jude: Because they are always yelling at kids.
Me: Oh...
Jude (sighing): He just gives them lumps of coal.

Let It Snow...

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Jude and I were heading to the car to go to occupational therapy on Thursday when he looked around are yard and stopped dead in his tracks, "Hey! Where is all our snow?  Why did Daddy shovel it all away?"

"It's not shoveled away, Jude," I tried to explain, "the sun melted it."  But this was not a good enough explanation.  He wanted someone he could blame.  When Chris got home, he would be ready.

Chris heard Jude's complaints and was amused, "Actually, Jude, all that's left is what I shoveled.  See that pile by the mailbox; it was too high for the sun to melt all at once."

This morning when Jude got out of bed, Jude went straight for the couch, pillow in hand.

"Wait!" Chris said, "Aren't you even going to look outside?  I put all your snow back."  Sure enough we've had quite a bit of snow today.  Jude didn't even care; it was Karenna who played outside the whole time.

Jude had a Christmas program for Pre-K on Thursday night.

It was his turn to be on stage as he sang a few songs.  He did a fabulous job; he wasn't shy at all.  All of the kids were very cute, and it was amazing that they were able to perform fourteen songs for an audience of parents, grandparents, brothers, sisters, and others without any major issues.

It was also our turn this time to try to pick out which little girl was the girl he likes.  Karenna did not sit with us during the show because she wanted to be with her friends and sit near the front of the stage to see her brother, so we had no help identifying her until the end.

Later, Jude told us the story about how he wants to marry this little girl and have 6 children (3 girl babies on a pink team and 3 boy babies on a blue team), this time with a bit more detail than before, "...and the pink and blue teams will fight each other. And when the cry, I will put them back in.  I will give them a ball they can throw and they will keep playing until there is a winner!"

If you read "Nutcracker Tents", you know Jude is very interested in the Nutcracker.  We also brought Jude to Karenna's Nutcracker recital night.  He enjoyed the following:

  • "the Nutcracker action figure"
  • the battle scene (He wants a Mouse king costume and a Nutcracker prince costume so he and his cousin Lukey can fight.)
  • looking for people he knows, like family, neighbors, and friends

For example, after Karenna performed the party scene of the Nutcracker, she returned to the audience with us and looked at the program with me.  Karenna and I spotted the name of one little girl in particular.

"Isn't that [little girl from new daycare]?" I asked Karenna.

Jude had a crush on a little girl from his old daycare for about a year and a half.  He wasn't even three when he first started telling us he wanted to marry this little girl.  For his fourth birthday party she was on his short list of invitees, because "She is both pretty and beautiful!"

All summer, he would talk about her even though he hasn't seen her in months.  He would mention Halloween when he wore his Bumblebee costume and what she said about his mask.  (He still remembers it even though there has been another Halloween since then.)

But something has changed.  In the months since, he has mentioned another little girl.  One who plays the things he likes to play.  I started hearing this name a lot.  Until eventually this girl became the replacement wife.

"I am going to marry [little girl from new daycare]," Jude said, "and we are going to have 3 boys and 3 girls.  And the boys will be on the blue team.  And the girls can be on the pink team."  (I'm not sure what exactly this meant, but I do know he has plans to stay at home with them.)

"Guess what, Jude," Karenna said, "[Little girl from new daycare] is in Act II."

During Act II we tried to point her out to him, but she was tiny and toward the back.  And he was tiny and sitting low in his chair.  I asked him to sit in my lap.  He had to move all of his stuff to his dad first.  By the time he had done this and sat in my lap, she was tiptoeing off stage.  He was disappointed.

"Oh, Jude," I tried to console him, "Maybe you will run into her when we leave at the end of the show.  Just be a good boy and hang on until them."

He was disappointed, but this advice seemed to help a bit.  I looked aback a few times and he seemed to be still interested in the show, lulled by the music.  Maybe a bit too lulled.  He was asleep by the time it ended.

We got him into his coat and to the doors without much of a stir.  As we were headed out the doors a little girl passed us.

Karenna jumped up and yelled tugging at Jude's leg, "Jude, it's her! It's her! It's [little girl from new daycare]!"

Not a peep.

Then we got to the car where the cold woke him up.  Karenna told him he missed out.  The cold, the sleepiness, and the missed opportunity got to him.  He bawled.

I felt like he was in a Peanuts cartoon. Poor little guy.

Karenna loves dances.  She lives dance.  She adores her dance teachers.

She talked us into adding an extra dance class this year, so that in addition to an hour and a half of ballet and tap once a week, she would also have an hour per week of modern.

When she was asked to join apprentice ballet for another night a week at fifteen minutes, we talked it over, then talked to her ballet teacher, then talked to Karenna as well.  We wanted to make sure school work always came first.

Karenna's part in the Nutcracker was much longer this year than in previous years.  She was a boy in the party scene.  This meant she'd be on for several songs.  It also meant weeks of extra practices. She was able to do this and keep up with her school work.  (Though I will admit getting her moving some mornings was tougher than others.)

On the night of the show I had to help her into her costume which fit over her leotard.  Her costume was actually a large pair of short pants which were pinned to fit her itty bitty waist, a large shirt which we had to tuck int the pants, a brown jacket, and a black cap.  Once  adjusted, she made such a cute little boy! (I have a few photos I plan to post elsewhere.)

When it was time for her to line up backstage, I decided to take a seat in the audience.  She hadn't rehearsed in costume and I really wanted to see her perform.  I took my seat in the front row on the right as the show was about to start.

According to Karenna, during the party scene, she heard or felt something snap, but didn't know what it was.  Her next part was to go to toward the Christmas tree and jump.  She did this and soon discovered what had snapped.  It was a safety pin.  Her pants fell.

I expected a few chuckles.  I expected Karenna to cry.  As a mother, I didn't know what to do.  Should I run backstage?  No. There would be people back there to help her.  I waited.

Karenna picked up her pants and continued for a while doing her dance as perfectly as one could while holding pants up with one hand and a horn in the other.  She was not shaken.  Her feet and other arms were doing exactly what they were supposed to do.  Her face showed no sign that something was wrong.

Eventually when the kids returned to their families, one of the party women helped Karenna with her pants.  Her shirt remained slightly out-tucked for the remainder of the show.  She was one of the last party children to leave the scene.  Good job, Karenna!

Nutcracker Tents

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I took Jude to Karenna's Nutcracker rehearsals tonight. 

Throughout the rehearsal, I found myself explaining the Nutcracker to Jude, as well as what the costumes would look like on the night of the actual event.  It wasn't a full dress rehearsal, so during the party scene Karenna, who was supposed to play a boy, was not dressed as one, and the female guests had hoop shirts without their full dresses.

He was very interested, and for the most part, for a four-and-half-year-old boy, did a good job paying attention.  He got really into the rehearsal.  The only problem was when he'd get really into it and he'd laugh out loud or shout out at the characters.

At one point he pointed to one of the party women in hoop skirts and announced loudly, "See, those are not dresses, those are tents." His eyes got very big and his hands gestured as he continued, "They are never going to get out of those things. Ever."

Wanna Wedgie?

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I picked Jude up from pre-K on Monday and found him in rare form.  As one of his friends was being picked u by his mother, he called out to him and to me...

Jude (announcing loudly): Wedgies are good!  That's what I tried to tell [pre-K friend].
Me (trying to ignore him and not laugh): Okay. Well let's just get your coat on.
Jude (giggling): Well, I gave myself a wedgie...

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