Yesterday, MrMan attended his first cooking class. One of the things I dig about his new school is that the aftercare program (or lagniappe, as they call it), includes a class for the first hour. A different one, Monday through Thursday. He’s taking French, math games (his first choice), percussion, and cooking. It seems like yesterday’s class, where they made what sounded like a strawberry lemonade (“I can’t remember what it’s called, but I can tell you the ingredients: sugar – but it’s a healthy recipe, strawberries, a blender, lemons…”), inspired him.
A little before I was going to leave for last night’s book group, he came into my room and announced he was going to make something small for me to take to book group. I didn’t know what that meant, but as the conversation progressed, it became clear that he meant a food item. I thanked him, but told him that I was going to eat at book group. But the boy was insistent that I eat a tiny something before I went. So he went into the kitchen, created a cheese and avocado sandwich, and marched back into my room with a half on each palm.
My anal retentive self directed us to the table. Where we giggled about the fact that Sam helped him cut the cheese. (Oh, I delight that he’s old enough to get that joke now.)
And then, I wasn’t that hungry, but I ate that cheese, avocado, and love sandwich.
“MrMan, did you wash yourself?”
“Wash? my? self?”
“Yes, wash yourself. That’s why you’re in the bathtub, isn’t it?”
“No, I’m just chillin’ out.”
MrMan woke up calling out, “Two days until I’m 5 and 3/4!” Sam pondered the date for a second, and called back that it was actually one day. Swoon.
He then came to our room, joined me in bed, and proceeded to do some birthday planning. An ice cream cake, with chocolate cake and four flavors of ice cream – strawberry, pistachio, lemon…. Wait, what color are the Power Rangers? The ice cream on the inside should coordinate with the figures on the outside…. Mind you, the boy has no Power Rangers.
He’ll have kids to our house, but only ones that are 5, or 5-1/2, or 5-3/4. No little kids, because they might feed his fish too much. They’ll tip over the fish food container and then hundreds of bits would be in the water.
I’ll do the face painting.
And we can decorate the house.
And they can run around outside, in the yard, and take turns riding his blue bike.
Such big and heartwarming plans first thing in the morning.
For the first time in years, MrMan has an odd number of teeth, much to his delight. We probably weren’t even halfway through the school year when he started obsessing. “When will I have a loose tooth?…When am I going to lose my first tooth?” Classmate after classmate was showing up with tenously attached teeth, or gaps in their smiles. But not MrMan.
A few months ago, he started insisting he had a loose tooth. He might have actually believed it – thinking that the sensation of his fingertip’s movement was actually his tooth moving. But we’d check and find it firmly in place. I took the easy way out and made the non-commital “Mhmmm,” if the subject came up.
But, finally! A couple of weeks ago, he developed an honest-to-goodness loose tooth. Yesterday, it became a lost tooth.
When we picked him up from camp, I suddenly realized he had a gap in his smile.
“You lost your tooth! Congratulations!… Where is it?”
“I don’t know…. But we can write the tooth fairy a letter.”
He seemed so casual about it. But as the conversation progressed, it became apparent that the calm child before us was the result of a heart to heart with his junior counselor. Thank goodness for them, and MrMan’s adoration. My child, usually so cautious, has no idea where or when his tooth came out. But, during the day, when it was brought to his attention that it was missing, he cried. Luckily, one of his junior counselors talked him down, telling him the same thing had happened to him when he was younger, and that maybe the tooth fairy would accept a written explanation instead of the tooth itself. How blessed I am that my child has these thoughtful teenage boys in his life – young enough to remember how he might feel, old enough to suggest a remedy.
And, so I took a letter, in which MrMan hoped that the tooth fairy might find his tooth, wherever it might be. I’ve never been at this end of the situation, but I think the letter was easier to get from under his pillow than the tooth would have been. And while it wasn’t the $100 he was hoping for, MrMan was over the moon at the dollar coin waiting under his pillow this morning.
A couple of weeks ago, when we picked MrMan up from school, our departure from aftercare coincided with that of one of his classmates – let’s call her Delilah. We headed toward our respective cars. As we got close to ours, MrMan said,
“I am so sad.”
“Why?” I asked.
“I just love Delilah so much…. And she loves me.”
“So doesn’t that make you happy?”
“But I won’t see her until tomorrow.”
Last week, on the way home, MrMan shared from the backseat, “Delilah calls me her boyfriend. But we’re too young to have girlfriends and boyfriends.” We agreed and told him he could have one when he’s 25.
A few nights ago, MrMan was snuggling up to his visiting Dayi Anis and announced into his chest and belly, “I have a girlfriend.” I guess that few extra days made him feel mature enough to enter this new phase in life?
I’m not ready for this. But still share in MrMan’s excitement that Delilah is headed to the same new school!