We celebrated Easter yesterday with lots of eating and sitting around, two things at which I could excel except that on most days I only have five minutes to shove a meal in my mouth before racing off to some activity. When I retire I plan to devote more time to eating and sitting around; it would be practically un-American not to. We also went to church and the minister told a funny (to me, anyway) story about receiving a promotional email from a company that will provide the equipment to enable people to fly during church Easter productions. The email said something like, "You know what's missing from your Easter production? Flying!" I'm a little bit upset that I've never received an email saying that that the one thing missing from my life is flying, because it's true. I already get 1,000 emails a day telling me that what's missing from my life is the perfect pair of ankle-cuff sandals or some new outdoor furniture, but not a word about flying. After the minister told the flying story he said some religious stuff, little of which I retained because the Boy distracted me with pictures of soldiers that he was drawing on the prayer request pamphlet in the pew. Since I left the pamphlet there, I hope someone finds it and decides that it's a prayer request for the military and not just random vandalism.
When the Boy and the Girl were little they went to a church-affiliated preschool, and they learned the Easter story in Pre-K. When the Girl (five at the time) recounted the story for me she said, "Some soldiers killed Jesus and then they put him in a tube." I said that the word was actually "tomb," but that I could see why she thought it was a tube. She told me she thought that the tube she was thinking of one of those nylon tubes that kids can crawl through - like this:
Aside: These tubes are a nice activity until the kids get big enough to put the tunnel over their heads vertically and wander around banging into things. This explained her temporary reluctance to go into our play tunnels. Thank goodness we cleared that up.
Not to be outdone, when I asked the Boy about the Easter story he said that the soldiers put Jesus someplace, but he couldn't remember where. I prompted him that the word started with a "T." "Oh, I know! They put Jesus in a teepee!" So, note to pre-school religion teachers: when you mention the "tomb" the kids have zero idea what you are talking about.
Because we went to church, the kids had to get dressed up. The Baby is easy because she would wear a floor-length ball gown every day if she were permitted. She also has a bunch of the Girl's old dresses because I was still making an effort with the kids' appearance back in 2008. Now I'm so harried and things are so hectic that we're all lucky if they're wearing shoes that fit and that their fingernails get trimmed before they get lady-hands. The Boy is the next easiest because while he complains about wearing a collared-shirt and khakis, I remind him that it could be much worse. We live in the south and he could easily be wearing seersucker, a bow tie, and bucks. (Secretly, I would love to dress him like this, but he would never forgive me).
The Girl has entered a stage where she wants to wear sweatpants or jeans and t-shirts all the time, so she was not thrilled when I told her that she'd need to wear a dress. I went shopping and came home to present her with three options. She told me that they were all "terrible" and that I should just pick because they were all so bad that there was no good choice. I persuaded her to try them on to see which one fit her best and she grudgingly agreed. All the dresses looked fine to me, but she was clearly unhappy about the whole thing and shut herself in her room. She wouldn't even come out when I sang, "Love is an Open Door," to her. She just told me to be quiet. In the end, she agreed to a very plain navy blue dress and by the time Easter rolled around she had forgotten to hate it and wore it without a fuss. Kids are predictable only in the unpredictability.
I decided that I would give up reading my primary Hollywood gossip websites for Lent and I did a pretty good job. It was helpful that Facebook now has the trending news feed so I "inadvertently" caught the news that Gwenyth Paltrow and Chris Martin are "consciously uncoupling" and that Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher are having a baby. For some reason the one question that kept nagging me through my 40-day gossip drought was whether Kendra Wilkinson (late of "Girls Next Door") and married to Hank Baskett (late of the NFL) had given birth to her second child. I have no idea why, of all pressing matters in the world, I was worried that I would miss the big event. When I checked back to the gossip world today I was relieved to see that Kendra was still preggers and even taking pregnant bikini pictures on the beach (stars! they are not at all like us). I watched Kendra's reality show when she was pregnant with her first kid and I don't know that I've ever seen a more realistically unpleasant depiction of pregnancy. I think she about doubled her body weight and just seemed wholly miserable the entire time. It was so refreshingly honest that I've always had a special place in my heart for this woman I will never meet. If you're wondering how this tangent relates at all to Easter, please remember that Kendra was a Playboy Bunny.
Finally, on the way to school this morning one of my little carpool members announced that she had spied the Easter Bunny hiding eggs outside and ran out and managed to give the Bunny a hug before he hopped away. This caused the Baby (who was in a mood-and-a-half already) to cry because, of course, she's never interrupted the Easter Bunny and given him a hug. While I was trying to figure out how to calm the Baby without calling out the first kid for lying (or maybe her dad dons an Easter Bunny suit and hops around on their lawn, what do I know?) and then revealing that the Easter Bunny doesn't exist, our third little carpool member piped up: "The Easter Bunny is magic. You can't see him and you can't hug him. He'd disappear." It's true, he'd go right down his rabbit tube. I mean hole.