Monday, February 26, 2007

Just wanted to share a couple or recent pics. First is Jackson out in the yard playing. He has a suspicious substance on his face, probably just ate some dirt or something. The other is Jackson helping me do dishes. He can't stand seeing bubbles and water without getting his hands in it. I expect to begin teaching him to rinse dishes soon. He may as well help if he's gonna be up there.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Have you seen the movie trailers for Bridge to Terabithia? Looks like a great high fantasy. And it is. Sort of. I vividly remember reading and enjoying the book as a kid. But it is a memory tinged with sadness. And I find the trailers to be quite misleading. Yes, there is fantasy and adventure, however parents are going to take their kids to this movie unprepared for the fact that ****spoiler alert**** one of the main characters, a child, dies. I guess it will make for great conversations between parents and children about death. I just think parents ought to know ahead of time and decide if they and their kids are ready for it. Of course, as a young reader, I was blindsided by it. And it sure gets in deeper when you are unprepared. If you know a character is going to die, you have the chance to steel yourself. To guard from getting to attached to them, so that when they die, it doesn't hurt so bad. Heh, I can think of two other literary deaths that will still get me weeping every time. In fact, when I re-read these books as I am want to do occasionally, I will read all the way up to the death and then stop. I am talking about Lonesome Dove, of course, and David Eddings Sparhawk series which if you don't read fantasy you won't know what I am talking about.

I am just rambling, since I just saw that movie trailer and wondered how they could take such a powerful book and turn it into a 35 second adventure trailer with no reference to the true theme of the book.

I may be extra sensitive to this since I recently saw Pan's Labyrinth. It was a truly brilliant movie. Powerful and heart breaking. And I went in totally unprepared for the brutal, realistic violence. It was marketed using little but the high fantasy adventure aspect and I didn't expect that the movie was really about the evils that men do and the lengths that innocents must go to, to rise above and escape them. The fantasy aspect is almost minor and as a viewer you can either choose to believe it is real or not and it doesn't matter to the power of the movie either way. It really is brilliant and one of the most powerful movies I have ever seen. I am glad I saw the movie. I have told others that they must see it. But I am not sure if it wouldn't have been easier to take had I understood going in that I was not really seeing a fairy tale movie.

Ok. Gotta cook dinner, I'll leave the discussion to other armchair intellectuals...

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Today has been a good day. I am in Santa Anna (population 1,082) visiting my Dad on his birthday. Jackson and I took off mid-morning and drove 2-1/2 hours north. Took an hour to get out of town, but once I hit Seward Junction on 183 traffic was light. It is a nice drive. Rural. 70 mph speed limit. Sunshine. Just a nice day to drive. Jackson actually slept for about 45 minutes, which is almost a record. I have the only child in known existence who does not sleep in the car. But he was happy, and when he got tired of riding, I gave him a ziplock of Goldfish, which always makes him content for a little while longer.

Got here about 1:00 p.m, just in time for BBQ burgers and hotdogs. My brother had his girls, Emma and Gracie, and his girlfriend's 3 kiddos. Jackson was so happy to run around the yard and play with the soccer ball and just watch what the older kids were doing.

He doesn't get enough outside time. I feel guilty about that. But after taking care of him all day and working half days and getting home and thinking about cooking dinner, etc... I just don't feel like going outside and keeping up with him. He doesn't like going out into the back yard. He only wants to go out front where there are sidewalks and people walking dogs and cars. If I go outside with him, I basically have to walk around the block with him cause he just wants to keep going. And the cold doesn't seem to phase him like it phases me.

So today was good. My Dad has a big ol fenced yard and a sandbox and play scape he built for the grandkids. Jackson could go all over the place and he did. He walked the fence line. He chased the soccer ball. He pointed at birds and just had a great time. And when I put him down for a nap, he sighed and was grateful and slept for a good two hours.

When he woke up, it was just him and me. My brother left and my Dad's employees dragged him off to the monster truck show in Abilene. Yeah, that's right, the monster truck show. So Jackson and I played on the floor with some matchbox cars my Dad has. And he sat on my lap and pointed at body parts for me to name. He knows eyes. He knows mouth. Or at least he likes sticking his finger in my mouth. We are working on nose and ears. But he rarely sits still and pays attention to me long enough for repetition to make memory.

But today, my boy was so affectionate. He let me hold him and he gave me kisses and hugs and just let me be close to him. This may not sound like much to you, but it is a pretty big deal to me. My son was not a born cuddler. He was five months old the last time I got to rock him to sleep. He doesn't like it. When he is tired, he just wants to be put in his crib. And this is not a bad thing as far as sleeping and routine is concerned. I know lots of parents who would love to be able to put their kid in bed at 7:00 p.m. and say "goodnight" and that's that. I know that. It is just nice that as Jackson is getting older, he is learning to be affectionate. He seems to understand now that it is about showing love and happiness, not about being confined or smothered. It makes me happy when he grabs my face and gives me kisses - which usually include lots of slobber and sometimes teeth. And today was a good day for that.

Heh, maybe it made a difference that his Daddy wasn't here. When Daddy is around, Jackson still prefers to stick like glue to him. He loves his Daddy. But he doesn't give his Daddy kisses yet. So I am content.

Things are pretty good. My Robin Hood script is in its second draft and those I have asked for suggestions don't seem to have anything to add or subtract. So I may just read it through again and make sure I like the way it reads. Then I can call it done. Scottish Rite will be holding auditions for it in a few weeks and it goes up in April. I am excited. I hope it plays well and the kids love it. I think it is pretty darn good. My editing contributors had such great suggestions after the first draft that it is now so much better than I thought it could be. I am definitely proud.

BTW, my Dad's keyboard is disgusting. It is covered in cigarette ash, coffee, and numerous other unidentified substances. When I am done posting this, I am seriously going to give my hands a good scrub. Didn't I just read that women's desks were more dirty than men's? Hmmm. Guess I know what a good birthday present for my Dad is. New keyboard. This one is gross. Really.