Watched Elf with the biggest boy last night. He's so funny, all squished up on the love seat, looking a lot like Will in the tiny chairs at Elf school. J chose the smaller couch, he always does. Not sure why, either, but he contorts himself in odd ways to stretch out, and over and off. He's always trying to fit into places where he "shouldn't" be. He, like his mother, doesn't quite understand the concept of "should".
He and I had a long-ish talk throughout the movie, during commercials, of course. We talked about how easy it is to take for granted all the wonderful things you have in your life. He told me that all his friends talk about how good our house always smells and that J is so lucky to have a mom who bakes him cookies almost every day. He went on about the Christmas decorations that I always make from "nature" and how comforting that has been for him, no matter where we lived or what was going on. He could always count on cooking and pine boughs.
I had no idea he even noticed those things. I figure that I bake cookies all the time because the kids (and hubs) love them and they make the house smell good and feel warm on cool days. And, let's face it, these boys need a lot of things to eat! It's what my mother taught me to do... and the decorations, too. She and her pal Nancy always took us kids into the woods to gather greens for wreaths and garland. I don't know if the plastic stuff was available yet, but our mothers did it the way their mothers and grandmothers had done it before them.
Talking about it all with J made me so grateful to my own mother for giving me these gifts that I use to create a memorable and joyous life for my family. All the little things that I worry so tirelessly about are just a waste of my energy. J didn't notice that when he was 5, we were poor and had to walk to the grocery store to buy milk and bread with loose change in the middle of a snowstorm. Instead, he thought it was so cool that I allowed him to walk all that way catching flakes on his tongue and see the big plastic horses and the train tracks and that half dead bat next to CVS. "Remember, Mom? Those were the days!"