Monday, February 2, 2009
I have a few kids that are just like their uncle--book lovers. On Bryan's "my space" thingie, he adds that he enjoys a good movie (and he had LOTS) but nothing compares to a good book! Every day in the Fitzpatrick home, we observe a sacred hour: silent reading. I am serious. It is my refuge and refueling time. Our son Aidan usually loves this hour as much as the rest of us. But I have not been getting to the library like I usually do. He has exhausted our supply of "boy" books. Aidan has strict criteria. The books his sisters loved don't fly with him. I truly thought I had this voracious reading thing under control--just use the list from which I satisfied the other two appetites from. NOT! So I feel like I am back to square one. But without the drive, motivation, and time to get to the library. So I was desperate for our quiet time this afternoon. Peter was napping, the other three had found some book to occupy them, I wanted to curl up with a book, but Aidan was floundering. When Aidan is idle, things go awry. It is not quiet. The refuge becomes an asylum. I NEEDED something fast.
Uncle B to the rescue! A few years ago, my brother (who has earned THE BEST GIFT GIVER EVER award for his magical ability to please his recipients) gave me The Complete Calvin & Hobbes Collection. Not just "The Best of"...no, no! The ANTHOLOGY. It is three huge volumes, hard cover, thousands of pages, tens of years worth--it is gigantic. It is great! It is among my prized possessions.
Now I have held Aidan off for years from reading these books from cover to cover. We have read my pre-screened choices together. But the books have been contraband to him, the forbidden fruit. And today, I let him pluck from the tree unbidden. I was desperate! I realize that all the subject matter is not necessarily appropriate for a seven year old boy, my unstoppable little force who does not need any help coming up with new ways to shake up our lives. Did I mention that I was desperate?
So he sat in my comfy chair right next to me and giggled and chuckled and talked to himself and just delighted in Calvin and his antics. It was a joy to behold. Even if I did provide him with a year's worth of fuel to fire his already overactive imagination, Aidan received joy from my brother's perfect gift. Bryan had been so excited to give it to me.
Last year (or was it the year before?), he bought the boys The Dangerous Book for Boys. He was so excited to read it that he stayed and finished it after they went to bed. He gave them a warning about page 109 and then let them at it. Then came Kate's The Daring Book for Girls. He just looked for ways to add zest and pleasure to the kids lives! And he was very eager to pass on his passions and interests to them. He was such a fabulous uncle. I know I have mentioned THAT before :) Aidan didn't even realize that I was processing our sacred hour and preparing to memorialize it in this blog. He was just enjoying a good book from one of my favorite people--a gift that keeps on giving from one stellar gift-giver!
PS I added the books to his shelf at the bottom of the blog if you want to check them out!
Posted by Reilly Fitzpatrick at 8:15 PM