Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Mommiest Moments: October, 2009


Eric's Baptism. October 9, 2009.
We were delighted so many family members could make it!



[Eric was playing black box with Grandpa Homer, who was in town for his baptism. After offering his “inputs,” he was graphing them (as his x-coordinates) with their corresponding “outputs” (y-coordinates) to form a shape on paper, which would in turn reveal the nature of the Secret Equation.]


Eric: [Staring at the pattern he's graphed] It looks like a parabola.

Grandpa Homer: That's right.

Eric: So it must be a quadratic equation.

Grandpa Homer: Uh, right!

Eric: So it must be in the form ax^2 + bx + c.

Grandpa Homer: [gaping slightly] That's right...

Eric: And c must be 1. But I don't know how to solve for a and b...



“All my other pregnancies have had such drama...I figure this one will end with a car accident, a high-speed ambulance ride, and an emergency C-section...”

--Gail, anticipating the worst.



“He said 'Just one? Can't I take my whole family?'”

--The school psychologist, reporting on her interview with Eric, in which she asked him, “If you were stranded on a desert island with just one person...” She said this demonstrated that he had strong, loving family ties. :)

--I understand how Eric feels. I wouldn't want to pick just one, either. I still remember a trip to the ER when I was Daniel's age. I had fallen from a kitchen counter and gotten a nasty concussion. Both Mom and Dad drove me to the hospital, but there a nurse informed me that I had to select only one parent to accompany me for all the testing, relegating the other parent to sit in the waiting room. I finally picked Dad, on the assumption that he would browbeat any nurses who tried to do something stupid, but it was a traumatic experience.

---It's also like asking a parent “Who do you want to raise your kids if you die?” My answer is usually, “Well...either set of grandparents would do a good job, or either of my sisters, but...but...really, I want to raise 'em myself!”













Eric's birthday cake: A wizard hat.


“You want to give your own talk about baptism? Well, that's unusual, but...I don't see why not...child after my own heart...exactly the sort of thing I would have done had it occurred to me...”

--The more I thought about it, the more I liked Eric's idea. And, after all, it was his baptism and I tried to accommodate all his reasonable requests, lest I make a mockery of the principle of agency.

---Eric did a great job, too!



“If you scrawl so illegibly that no one can read it, it doesn't count. On school assignments, you need to write slowly enough that your teacher can give you credit for your answers. Private writing is different; my own journal is illegible to anyone except me. Like having a secret code...”

--An illegible scrawl I wrote on a sheet of paper to demonstrate a point to Eric. He had written what looked like “4 + 6 = 16.” I believed that he intended to write “10,” but I counted his answer wrong anyway to teach him a lesson. He was furious. Naturally, after my demonstration, I had to go hunting through old journals to find an entry which was both sufficiently illegible that he almost certainly couldn't read it, and sufficiently unembarrassing just in case he could...



*****“Anyway, the only information I got out of Eric, after thirty minutes of trying, was: 1) The bishop said an opening and closing prayer; 2) Eric mentioned that his grandparents were all coming, and it's approximately a 16-18 hour drive for both of them; 3) They discussed what happened when Heavenly Father and Jesus created the earth; and 4) He passed.

*****“He finally said 'I don't want to tell you,' which I respected, but then he said I could keep asking him questions. I asked if there was any information he was willing to volunteer, and got a very ├╝ber-Aspie blank stare, after which I gave up.”

--He just turned eight. I thought the super-secretive adolescent silence wasn't supposed to start for another five years or so.

--I'm not the kind of helicopter parent who demands to read her kid's patriarchal blessing. I was asking reasonable questions like “Did the Bishop ask if you understood why baptism is important?” I was growing baffled, because if they didn't discuss the baptismal covenant, famous baptism from the scriptures, obedience, commandments, logistics, or even how Eric was doing in school, what did they find to talk about for fifteen minutes?”



Witch of Doom: Do any minions want to help make the pie?

[Eric and Daniel rush to volunteer.]

Witch of Doom: [Sings softly] One little, two little, three little minions...three little minion boys...

--She was counting Q as a mini minion, I expect.



The Witch of Doom's Award-Winning Homemade Cockroach Pie.
She served it with Mud Juice and it was a big hit among the minions.



*****I had this idea for a Halloween theme: Dorothy (me), Cowardly Lion (Danny), Scarecrow (Eric), and Tinman (Jon). Plus Danny wanted Bear to be Toto. Eric, however, wasn't interested, and I was annoyed.

*****All Eric could suggest was that he wanted to be someone who tried (but failed) to be scary, preferably incorporating the color red.

*****I kept thinking “Why did I ever decide to let kids choose their own costumes after they turned three?” (I had a silly, misguided notion about letting the kid “own” the process, exercise his own imagination, and feel involved.)

*****I pushed as hard as I could reconcile with my conscience, to no avail. But then Danny—wonderful boy, I had been out of charity with him all day but he is now amply forgiven—Danny said, "Eric! You could be the scarecrow and keep trying to scare crows but you never succeed!"And Eric said, "Oh. Okay."

--This is why God created siblings, I'm convinced. I recall frequently convincing Ronald or Carolyn to do something they wouldn't have done for Mom.



"Get this crow off my head! Aaaaaaagh!”

--Eric, dressed as a silly scarecrow for Halloween, hamming up his role. He kept pretending to swat at the "crow" (I confess, I grew desperate, bought a baby bath rubber ducky and painted it black) only to smack himself instead. He was cute and comical and had a blast. Bless Danny the Diplomat for his suggestion. :)



Pay no attention to the pregnant Dorothy in the picture...
I particularly liked Bear's costume and impersonation of Toto.


4 comments:

Jon said...

“All my other pregnancies have had such drama...I figure this one will end with a car accident, a high-speed ambulance ride, and an emergency C-section...” --Gail, anticipating the worst.

That's enough of that! There will be no accidents, ambulance rides, or C-sections. Not if I have anything to do with it. I'd think you would give my driving better credit than that.

Jon said...

“He said 'Just one? Can't I take my whole family?'” --The school psychologist, reporting on her interview with Eric, in which she asked him, “If you were stranded on a desert island with just one person...” She said this demonstrated that he had strong, loving family ties. :) --I understand how Eric feels. I wouldn't want to pick just one, either. I still remember a trip to the ER when I was Daniel's age. I had fallen from a kitchen counter and gotten a nasty concussion. Both Mom and Dad drove me to the hospital, but there a nurse informed me that I had to select only one parent to accompany me for all the testing, relegating the other parent to sit in the waiting room. I finally picked Dad, on the assumption that he would browbeat any nurses who tried to do something stupid, but it was a traumatic experience. ---It's also like asking a parent “Who do you want to raise your kids if you die?” My answer is usually, “Well...either set of grandparents would do a good job, or either of my sisters, but...but...really, I want to raise 'em myself!”

No hospital trips for the kids, either!

Jon said...

Witch of Doom: Do any minions want to help make the pie?[Eric and Daniel rush to volunteer.]Witch of Doom: [Sings softly] One little, two little, three little minions...three little minion boys...
--She was counting Q as a mini minion, I expect.

What exactly did you mean by "help make the pie"? I'm picturing something like "We'd like to have you for dinner."

Krenn said...

Are you certain that SSB doesn't stand for Ship, Submersible Ballistic? that's the first thing i thought of when i read Stanley;s name.