Thursday, November 01, 2007

Do You Believe in Magic?

For Halloween, the kiddo went as a haunted house. The kiddo's dad doesn't believe in doing much, if anything, for Halloween, but I love making costumes and sending the kiddo trick-or-treating all decked out in our creations. I worked about six hours on Tuesday at school, lifting boxes of fundraiser cookie dough (ouch, my legs!) and found a great big box to use. We went to the store that evening and bought brown paint and stuff, then painted the box at home. During the day on Wednesday, I cut a hole in the bottom of the inverted box, cut out four-paned (or one-paned, depending) windows in all sides of the box, outlined the windows with black paint, covered the windows with fuzzy cobweb stuff, painted black bats (with red eyes) all over the box, and stuck letters here and there to spell out BOO, EEK, HA HA HA, and SCARY. I used a corner of another box to make a roof-hat and painted that up to look like a gable/attic. The kiddo helped with some of the less messy stuff, like the lettering and the bat eyes and cobwebs, since we were getting pressed for time and I didn't want to clean paint off the kid. It was awesome.

He wore it for about 30 minutes because it was uncomfortable, kinda paint-smelly and everyone was "looking" at him. Well...duh. ;^) It was a lot of fun to make, though! :-) Oh, and I stupidly bought oil-based brown paint because it was the only type that came in brown (i.e., didn't require mixing), and man...was it a nightmare to clean. I hadn't had the foresight to buy turpentine or the like, and naively assumed I could rinse the brushes in the sink. HA! I wound up smearing brown paint aaaallllll over my hands and had to use grease-cutting dishwashing liquid and a lot of friction to get my hands looking even halfway clean. I think I may throw the brushes away. The kiddo wanted to keep the messy brushes "as a memory" (uh, that's a negative), but we shall see if environmental concern trumps my impatience and feeling of overwhelm enough to make me clean them.

Today the kiddo had a soccer game, and afterward the three of us (kiddo, me, his dad) went out to lunch. As the kiddo was about to take a bite of his usual grilled cheese sandwich, he noticed his left front tooth was finally loose enough to come he pulled it out. After dramatically gagging on the small amount of blood that accompanied the event, he showed us the tooth and flashed his newly partially toothless grin. I made sure to pocket the tooth, since the tooth fairy does not come to Daddy's house. He would do without Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny and the tooth fairy if he could, but I believe the window in which kids can believe in magical stuff is small compared to the length of time that they won't believe in such things, and the kiddo's dad agrees not to screw it up for me.

Tonight the kiddo and I put his tooth in the tooth fairy bag (a be-ribboned mesh bag meant for wedding favors and the like) and he put it under his pillow. However, one thing we have plenty of around here is emotion, so he dug out the bag and proceeded to get all misty-eyed, telling me he was really going to miss his tooth and could we please take a picture of it? What he doesn't know is that I keep his baby teeth in an envelope in my desk drawer (just like my dad did with my baby teeth), and he'll be able to see them any time he wants to after he's old enough. Nonetheless, I told him he could postpone putting the tooth under his pillow so we could photograph it tomorrow. He told me we'll need to take twelve photos of it in order to get it from every angle both inside and outside the bag, but he did feel better instantly and put the bagged tooth on my desk. A minute later, he asked if I was sure the tooth fairy wouldn't find it there and take it anyway, so I suggested he put it in my desk drawer so she wouldn't find it. He did and then fell promptly asleep.

See, these are the sweet and innocent moments I don't want to cheat him out of. I don't know who blew it for the kiddo's dad, such that he says he doesn't want to "lie" to our boy about fantasy characters like the tooth fairy (he has also made a point of calling the Resurrection of Christ -- I grew up Catholic -- the "resurrection myth," which may be a topic for another post), but I feel sorry for him for whatever is broken there. I honestly can't imagine a childhood without Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the tooth fairy and other magical characters. That just strikes me as sad.