1. In college, many of my friends and I became enthralled with the number "42" and were surprised how often it came up. Many, many years later, I still stop and notice the number.
2. One of the Eldest's friends was over a bit during the week. When his mother was offering to take him back, I told her I loved having him because he was the nicest to Youngest. She noted that her son had always wanted a younger brother.
3. When I mentioned to the friend what his mother said, encouraging him and Eldest to play war with the Youngest, the friend said, "I meant I'd always wanted a twin."
4. As the two boys were playing war in a particularly wooded park, a mother with two little kids, including a boy in diapers, was clearly disgusted. "Those boys are playing with guns. I hope they're toy ones."
5. Apparently the garish orange on the barrels led her to believe the guns were something else. I said to a friend I'd met at the park, "I hope I come across her and her precious boy in another eight years or so." Or maybe she'll not allow the kid to play with sticks held as guns.
6. Each Christmas day, our church has a pajama mass at 10 a.m., and everyone is encouraged to bring their favorite toys. The Daughter brought her Shining Star owl and a Pokemon DVD. The boys both brought their machine guns. Yeah, Santa has an NRA bumper sticker on the sleigh.
7. Perhaps I should not have allowed the boys to bring guns to church. However, since the priest brought his favorite gift of a scene from Star Wars when Darth Vader holds court over a "non-believer," I guess I'm safe.
8. Safely back in our own home, Christmas was quiet. Pete made a delicious meal of Cornish game hens, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and the like. The two youngest had cereal. At least they ate.
9. The Youngest has been relentless to get the others to play with him. He frequently offers them $5. I don't let him give it to them. I force them to play with him out of the kindness of their hearts...and the threat of my wrath if they don't.
10. I pocket the $5 myself.