Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Where Everything But the Red Fern Grows

I took the kids to the Missouri Botanical Gardens on Saturday.  All of the lillies were in bloom.  Also, the African Violet Society was having a meeting.  Are you picturing the members of the African Violet Society, too?  It's funny, right?

Those glass balloon sculptures are a few of my favorite things.  Also, Miles' pose for the paparazzi.  Love the onesie, dude.  Pulling.  It.  Off.

This past weekend we finished reading Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls.  It's the story of a young boy and his dogs.  There were twenty long chapters and it took us quite a while to get through them, but the journey was lovely.  One of the things I loved most about this book was how the young boy would pray and recognize when God had answered his prayers.  Wonderful lessons for my kids to learn.  [Spoiler Alert!]  At the end of the book, the dogs die.  It's heartbreaking and I was barely able to read through my tears.  When I finished that chapter (the second-to-last in the book), Harrison looked at me with the saddest expression I've ever seen and said, "Mom, why did you have to read that chapter?"  It reminded me of the time I told him that Darth Vader was Luke Skywalker's father.

Later Harrison did something he's never done before.  He snuck into my room, swiped the book, and read the last chapter just so he could make sure everything turned out okay.  That little punkin' has been melting my stone cold heart these past few weeks.

Chloe enjoyed the book, too, but seemed to feel that the chapters were exactly two pages too long.  (Every time she asked me if were were almost done with the chapter, there were two pages left.  Every time.)

We had two options for the movie, and I chose the most recent (2005) film.  It features Dave Matthews, Dabney Coleman, and Ned Beatty.  Also, a boy and some dogs.  The movie is only an hour and a half long and even though it covers the whole story, it felt way too short.  I was sad at the end, but it wasn't nearly as moving as the book.  Harrison agreed that "the book was WAY better."  Mostly because the movie was PG, so they couldn't show all of the gorey death scenes.  Nice.

I tried letting Miles in on story time one night.  He lasted two minutes.  So immature.

The Family Band.  Obviously, Miles is doing it wrong.  (See how immature?)  I think that's why Harrison looks so annoyed.  I'll let the kids play us out. 

Until next time!

12 Wisecracks:

KQ said...

Every time you post a blog about the chapter book you and the kids just finished, it makes me look forward to those times. But then I go into Lyla's room at night to put her blanket back on her before I go to bed, and I think, "when did you get so big?", and I don't want her to get big enough to read chapter books. See how conflicted I am? :) I love the pictures, and especially that immature Miles of yours!

Wendy said...

Have I told you that I am glad you are my awesome friend? tears, my friend. tears.

melissa said...

Have I told you that I'm in complete denial about you moving? So many tears.

Nicole said...

I was just debating with someone about when little boys should stop wearing one-piece "rompers." I love them so much right now (except the inefficient coverage during a blow-out diaper), but at what point does a boy become scarred for life?

Harrison is becoming very interesting and I like him. I love that Chloe is wearing a scarf, btw. Your kids have style.

Annie Get Your Camera said...

After a week and a half of no internet, I have to say that I think I missed your blog the most. It's good to be back in your sunshine!

And, geez, can Miles just grow up already? Stop acting like such a baby!

Andrea Lee U.R. said...

I love the way you write. It always makes me laugh.
Never did like the old movie to that book. I gues I will have to try the book with my kids and see if it is any better. (because, like you, I usally watch the movie before I read the book)

Your kids are adorable!!

P.S. my word verification word is "godles." What is up with that? Is blogger trying to tell me something about myself that I should know?!! ;)

melissa said...

Nicole, that scarf she's wearing belongs in that area of the garden. They are there for the children to use in their interpretive dances.

Annie, what a nice thing to say! Glad you're back online.

kenzie said...

You kill me. I hate laughing by myself in public. Anyway, now I have to read that book again! I read it last in the 5th grade when I did not appreciate it. I think life would let me appreciate it now.

Katy said...

I accidentally spit all over my computer screen when I saw that picture of Miles with the mallet in his mouth, I was laughing so hard!So funny-and so immature! Love it!
Gorgeous pictures and children.

elizabeth said...

I just have to say that I love Dale Chihuly and his glass work (especially those glass balls in the water). Have we discussed this before? I feel like we have.

Laura Crenshaw Chabo said...

Did I tell you that I attempted to steal your 'read a book with the kids before bed' thing? Well, I did. (in an attempt to combat the many tears and screaming and loud "NO!"'s we get at bedtime) and my kids are not as good as yours. They seriously didn't want me to ever stop reading and just threw a fit when the chapter was over instead of during pajama time. Frowny face. Is there something you do to make them be nice and go to sleep after the reading? And also, who is with Miles during this time, or is he already in bed? Maybe your hubby has better evening hours then mine and is there. My littlest ones scream their heads off when I try to leave them to get the biggies ready for bed. Any secrets you want to pass along?

melissa said...

Laura, Jeff is usually home in the evenings and will put Miles to bed. When he's not home, I'll put Miles to bed. He's pretty good about staying there because he knows the other kids will show up eventually.

After we read a chapter or two, I'll ask them what their favorite part of their day was and then give them a "spin hug." (I spin them around really fast and throw them on the bed. I don't know why we started doing that, but that's how they know it's time for bed.)

If it makes you feel any better, they never never never go to bed and stay there. We'll spend the next hour yelling at them to get back in their rooms. So, while reading time is delightful, bedtime is still most heinous.