Monday, August 31, 2009

In a Galaxy Far, Far Away

Good news, depending on how you look at it: 13 kids will be at A's birthday party, which is perfect. The parents that answered the invitation were pretty cute: they addressed their e-mails to The Council and said that their young Jedi knights would be reporting for training. Yay for some people getting the joke. Over half of the class hasn't responded, but that's not unusual. Many of the families just don't ever RSVP.

So now we are working on the Death Star pinata, which so far looks more like a Death Pear Pinata... hopefully that won't be a big deal.

I ordered a case of Star Wars Pez dispensers and we're going to have an asteroid search for them in the backyard. We have Pin-the-Lightsaber-on-the-Jedi, of course, and G. will be the Jedi Master in charge of training in his brown robe. The craft will be making Yoda stick puppets. Ol' Georgy Lucas hasn't released the characters for jumpy houses yet, so we're making do with an alien/outer space theme on the outside.

(Aside: on our way up north this weekend, we drove through Lucas Valley, where Skywalker Ranch is located. G: "Hey, maybe if we get rich, they'll name a whole valley after us!"
A: "I'd rather have cable.")

It's also very hard to find a bakery that does Star Wars cakes, so we're going to have to improvise on that too. I wanted to make it myself, but A. feels pretty strongly that not providing a bakery cake for his birthday party proves we don't love him.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Star Wars Party

Hmmm. So I sent out this invitation last week to A's classmates from last year. I can't get the list of his classmates for this year, yet, so if there are any new kids, we'll just have to hand it to them next week.

Now, the RSVP date is August 31, but I haven't received ONE reply yet. I'm wondering if the invitation was too obscure. Many of the parents are immigrants, and may think we're inviting their child to be indoctrinated into some weird cult. I assumed everyone would associate Jedi knights with Star Wars, but maybe not. I guess if the other parents hold up crucifixes when I approach on Back to School night, I'll know.

I had hoped for a small group, but it might be smaller than I expected. I know A. will be disappointed if none of his friends from school show up. I don't want to put people on the spot by calling them and asking, so I'm not sure what to do.

Friday, August 21, 2009

A.'s Halloween Classic

This is my very favorite of all of A.'s books and, you long time readers know, there are quite a few to choose from. He wrote it last year, when he was newly 6 years old. It's taken me this long to scan it in and share it. I love the way he builds the story around the stickers he happened to have. Not knowing how to spell words doesn't hold him back, of course. This was also back when he didn't really care if the letter was facing the right way or not, either.

It's titled: A Schrnj Nit (A Strange Night)
Pg. 1: it was Halluween nit and the Spooks caim awt.
Pg. 2: But une haws wus not doing gud. A scalutin lvis ther and hee wus cunfyoosd cus the chiljrin wrnt cuming. (The skeleton is scratching his head thinking "Wi ur thai not cuming?"):
Pg. 3: Hee wisht his hows wus lic his grademas. (look! He's thinking about his grandma's house!)
Pg. 4: Hee put mor decuraishins and hee got mor custumrs and hee livd happlee afdr.
(This is A.'s favorite because there's a little joke - the skeleton is thinking..."Maiby I shud not put the uyball on the rooth.")

I love the way he builds the story around this thoughtful skeleton, because he only had stickers of skeletons scratching their heads. Destined to be a classic, if only in our house.

Also, I'd like to apologize for the pop-up ads on my site. I've opted out of pop-ups numerous times, but I guess I have to do it daily. I'll try to figure out how to make them go away and never come back.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Brain Dump

This happens every year after BlogHer (and this year I didn't even go!). I find lots of fabulous new bloggers, get reacquainted with some old favorites, and instead of being inspired, I'm totally intimidated.

A long time ago I won a contest as Best Bay Area Parenting Blog, well, it was tie between me and someone else. That someone else just happened to put out a freakin' national best-seller within a year of the award. Last place I saw her was an article for O Magazine.

Then comes someone like Black Hockey Jesus, who closed his blog due to some privacy issues. He's a fabulous, interesting, unusual writer. I can't come close to wrapping my mind around stuff the way he does. Or my lovely friend the Bloggess, who is hilarious and true and honest, and manages to say all kinds of crap without being offensive (to me, anyway).

Then I start realizing that I really can't write. I mean, I can write, but I can't write well. I'm OK, don't get me wrong, I'm not trolling for compliments, but I'm not anything special, or unusual, or poetic. Every book I read is filled with amazing sentences that say in a few words what it takes me paragraphs to get out. My kids are funny and cute and we have a happy family.

Then I remember "Oh, wait, that's not why I started this blog. I started this blog because I like to journal, I wanted to learn how websites worked, and I wanted a record of my kids' lives that won't burn up in a house fire." I'd always written long letters to people, so this was my way of writing those letters to people but getting to keep them at the same time.

So. Fuck insecurity. Fuck the fact that I'm not a New and Exciting Voice! I still have my voice, and I still have space to speak.

Here's some things that have been going on:

1. I am regretting talking A. into watching Star Wars IV: A New Hope (formerly known as Star Wars, the original). He has embraced all things Star Wars and now speaks at length on the various Sith Lords and Battle Droids. When he embraces something, he really gets into it. Now I'm stuck planning a Star Wars birthday party for Labor Day Weekend.

So I'm all, Aw, c'mon, how 'bout Chuck E Cheese?? All the other kids let their parents do Chuck E Cheese parties!
And he's all, I'm not all the other kids, am I?

3 wrapping-paper-tube-and-duct-tape light sabers down, 17 to go.

2. We're moving forward on the Totally Confusing Our Children Religiously front. I've joined the UU church I've been attending for the past year. G. is looking into First Communion preparation at the Catholic churces (2 YEARS of classes to learn to eat the wafer?? That's a little extreme, don't you think?). And they've just finished Vacation Bible School at the Lutheran Church around the corner and will continue with Kids' Bible Camp on Wednesday evenings there this fall.

We alternate Sundays between the UU church and various Catholic churches around the area. I feel mixed about forcing the boys to sit through Catholic mass, even if it's only twice a month. Having attended 12 years of Catholic school, I sat through more than my share of masses and I hated every minute. I didn't even have ADHD, either. The boys aren't crazy about it either, and I hope it doesn't turn them against Catholic church, but frankly, I can understand their frustration. G. got to be an altar boy, so at least he had something to DO during the mass.

Last time, as we walked out, A. groused as we left, "I didn't understand any of that! All I understood was 'Please be seated'!"

I guess we'll see how it goes. As long as they're of the mind that we should be kind to others, even brothers, I guess we're doing OK. Whether or not they think that's a mandate from Jesus or God or ourselves is going to be their business, eventually.

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