Tuesday, February 19, 2019

The Valentines

Well, Valentine's Day was a few days ago.  A couple of weeks ago Julian told me this year they'd be making and bringing their own boxes/receptacles from home instead of doing it in class.  THIS IS IT, I thought.  IT'S TIME. The chat went like this:

JULIAN:  So we need to bring our own boxes for Valentine's Day. Do you think we could get that box at Walmart that we saw?

JEN: WHAT! No! Julian, you have a dad! You have a Sean dad! This is what he is made for!

And I then told him of all the times Sean has made me some crazy box or package or whatever. The year for my birthday he hid presents around the apartment in crazy shapes like pyramids that he made.  Or the time he made a cardboard carrying case for heart-shaped pizzas when we were attending a valentine's party. I reminded him of his cool dragon mask that he didn't even end up wearing Halloween night (I did, though). And to be quite honest, I have been looking forward to the day when he'd help with Valentine's boxes for a very long time. Pre-Julian time. 

So Sean and Julian discussed and Julian decided on a cougar.  I came home the Saturday before Valentine's and saw Sean in the midst of the build and I sat next to him and just watched, totally in awe. The way he works the cardboard. I mean, I saw a little bit of the Titanic construction but this is just crazy.  How he strips off pieces, rubbing them back and forth on the edge of the table to make them more bendy. And how he's able to visualize it all. What? How?   It really is a thing to behold.  So here are the pictures I took while I sat and occasionally helped with the glue gun:

The best was when Julian first saw it take shape. He came in the room, gasped, and exclaimed, "I have a DAD!" for he finally, truly understood the great gift he'd been given.  I laughed, while Sean expressed confusion to such a statement. But Julian got it. He gets it and fully appreciates. The finished cougar:

He had such a fun day and though we tell him repeatedly not to gloat, sometimes it just is so fun to have the cool thing.  I guess I just need to teach him how to gloat on the inside.  Because I love so much the things Sean chooses to create and I want to show them to the world.

Moving on, Valentine's Day kind of crept up on me this year. Normally I'm in full-on valentine-making mode a couple weeks in advance but I just couldn't get it together this year.  But I pulled out some ideas and had a valentine-making party with some 10-11 year old gal pals of mine and I shall feature some creations of one in particular.  She was killing me with her heart people. So funny. I had to write down all of the specific titles she gave them.

This particular girl is the oldest of six kids and I like to adopt her from time to time. She and Julian are pals with a similar sense of humor. We like to take her along when we do things. It gives us a friend and I think it gives her a break from craziness at home.  So this valentine she called, "depressed parent."
"See, she's drooling a bit. She's got two babies at home."
 This next one was "I'm trying to get the nose dirt."  Her dad told her boogers were basically nose dirt. Like, what kid would make a valentine like this? It's just so funny to me.

So good.

Another thing I fully embrace is the galentines, in whatever fashion to whatever degree. I went to dinner with some gal pals and one card I found was so funny to me, I bought 3 of them.  So I will share it here because it's great.

yaaaay PUNS! Also puns + swears= YAY. I also gave one to my parents because my mom likes to "accidentally" swear. JK Mom, but they loved it.

It's still a new tradition but I want it to solidify and be the thing we do forever which is a romantic family dinner where we exchange cards and chocolate gifts and declare our undying love for one another.  This year's was great with a delish dinner made by Sean and chocolates galore.  Also, Julian wrote me the cutest message that honestly made me tear up a little.  Good work, small one.  You now understand the power of loving and appreciative words to a mother.   Valentine's week, I had been sweating a little bit trying to figure out what to give the lads and finally came up with some funny pictures and pulled it together in the last minute.

First is Julian's.  I feel like since I'm taking kitty selfies on the daily anyway, why not turn one into a valentine to give to Julian a keepsake featuring those he loves most:

Also I found a cool app that does cool things. 

Next is Sean's.  I had taken a shower one night and and my hair was all fluffy and weird and I was like, maybe if I take an artsy pic and use my new app to make it funny or interesting? It wasn't a great plan. But then I saw it and remembered something funny between the two of us which is that sometimes my hair makes me look like specific people. One is Doc Brown from Back to the Future and the other is Andy Warhol.  I have this wig I wear on occasion-- ok, only on Halloween. But last year I wore it as we were trick-or-treating and friends who were out and about were like, "are you wearing a wig? I thought that was your hair."  And I thought, it's cool to wear a wig that's barely different from your own hair.  And it made me laugh because it's the same wig I wore when I went as Andy Warhol one year.  Anyway, saw the pic, made it black and white, behold, I turned into Andy, and a valentine was born:

See what I mean?
Image result for Andy WarholRelated image

I also wrote some poems for them because that's what I do. Such a fun day. The excitement for valentine's day is so fleeting for a kid but I hope to keep it alive for as long as I can.  I was telling the boys if I were to rank holidays in terms of their "largeness" of the impact they have to the day.. the feeling of the day, I might rank them thus:

1. Christmas
2. Halloween?
3. Thanksgiving/Valentine's tie. 

And then I couldn't think of any other holidays we celebrate that remotely comes close.  4th of july? Kind of. Everything from May- September is celebrated by eating outside.   Oh, I forgot Easter. I love Easter. I'll have to insert that somewhere.   I was trying to explain to Sean why I love Valentine's Day so much and I said, "I think it's just things I love. Cards + poetry + chocolate + love."  And it's so simple. It's not a big to-do.  So yay for that. 


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