There are currently 4-point-9 million Matchbox cars on the floor behind me.
You think I’m exaggerating… you think that there couldn’t POSSIBLY be that many toy cars in all of Small Town, let alone on my floor, but I assure you… I never kid about what’s for dinner or the sheer volume of toys that we own.
Specifically, the sheer volume of wheeled toys that we own.
Matchbox cars… tractors… combines… dump trucks… tow trucks…
Don’t even get me started on the vehicles we own that have tracks instead of tires, because apparently tracks are just better suited for heavy work in a dirt pile.
Also? Well, we’re having grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup for supper, because Thing 2 picked the menu out. My motto is that if you ASK a four-year-old what he wants you to make for dinner, you’d better be prepared to carry out his wishes. Thankfully, he was spot-on with some quick and easy comfort food. I don’t think it’ll drive my brain to a higher level of crazy to take a few moments to pop open the top on a family-sized can of Campbell’s Tomato Soup and grill up some cheese in the frying pan.
I never ask the boy what HE wants me to make for supper, because he answers with things like BEEF WELLINGTON and LAMB CHOPS WITH A BALSAMIC REDUCTION.
When I hear him ask for lamb chops with balsamic reduction, all I hear him say is LUCKY CHARMS.
This past weekend, the boy went with his youth group from church to a major, thriving metropolis several hours away, to attend a concert-slash-upbeat-Christian-youth-speaker event. When I took him to the church to drop him off on Friday morning (Yes! He missed school on Friday to go!), Thing 2 was fully convinced that he was going on the trip, too. When our kids’ youth pastor asked everyone to circle up for some last minute instructions and prayer, Thing 2 joined right in. He stood quietly. He listened intently. He even joined hands to become part of the circle when they all prayed for their trip.
When the youth pastor wanted everyone to jump on the count of three, Thing 2 did exactly that. He jumped on three, and he kicked those legs as high as he could. He showed more enthusiasm than 98% of the teenagers there.
His name is Sally O’Malley. His fifty. Five-zero. He likes to kick… and stretch.
And then we had some major tears when the kids all loaded into the vans, because WHY WASN’T HE BEING SEATBELTED IN WITH THE BIG GUYS? It’s hard to be four, when the fifteen-year-olds are leaving for a weekend of promised fun.
And fun, they had. The boy said the trip was a blast, and he got about 45 minutes’ worth of sleep, TOTAL, on the entire trip… on purpose. Teenagers can thrive on just closing their eyes for a couple of minutes, while their parental counterparts need nineteen hours of uninterrupted, Benadryl-induced sleep to feel like they can function in the real world. Sometimes I miss being fifteen, but then I remember all the geometry homework that comes with that age bracket.
Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Thing 2 got to celebrate his birthday again, with Grammy and Papa, who had been out of town on the day that he turned four.
Extended birthday celebrations rock.
Grammy had more presents for him to open.
That was it.
He wanted a new Broncos shirt for his 4th birthday, and Grammy found him one.
It turned out to be a giant John Deere combine, with working headlights. Thing 2’s level of excitement skyrocketed right off the charts, so that it couldn’t even be measured. His love language is sugar and combines.
Of course, I managed to forget to take my camera with me that night, and then… boom! The battery in my iPhone died, and there are no pictures of Thing 2 clapping his hands enthusiastically, while we all sang Happy Birthday to him again. There are no pictures of him picking gummy bears out of the cake frosting and gobbling them up with gusto. There are no pictures of him sticking his entire face into the cake to lick the frosting off.
I nearly had a nervous breakdown, as these events went undocumented on a digital memory card. You’ll just have to use your imaginations and know that they happened.
Grammy and Papa were wonderful enough (YES! WONDERFUL ENOUGH!!) to buy Thing 2 a karaoke machine for his birthday, which we set up over the weekend. It has a disco light that can lead to seizures inside of it. It flashes and spins and spins and flashes. And then…
… there’s the microphone.
Thing 2 has used it to bellow out his songs, on the impromptu stage of our living room coffee table.
And Thing 2 wants me to be very clear with y’all. His pose atop the coffee table may LOOK LIKE a toe point in ballet, but it’s not. He wanted me to state that it’s a Ninja Karate toe point, that is usually done right before the Ninja Karate Expert kicks a bad guy square in the nose. He hates the color pink. He hates Barbie and Tinkerbell and Cinderella and Ariel the Singing Mermaid.
He also hates ballet.
It’s because they don’t have Matchbox cars in ballet. It’s all pink tutus, and he’ll be having none of that.
Happy Tuesday, everyone. I’m off to encourage the preschooler to pick up some cars and put them in the toy box now.