Christmas is right around the corner and the 6-year-old boy and 7-year-old girl are bouncing off the wall.
Come to think of it, they were bouncing off the wall before Christmas was coming but now they've really ramped it up a notch.
The little boy has been quite interested in Santa Claus and recently asked me was it possible that "you and momma just put all the presents under the Christmas tree the night before and pretend like Santa Claus came."
I responded with this dumbfounded look sorta like when your wife says why were you talking to your old girlfriend at the class reunion. I finally pulled out one of my family's old time favorites and said, "Don't be ridiculous, Santa Claus is real and if you don't believe he won't bring any presents."
This was apparently not particularly persuasive to the little boy, who tilted his head sideways, crinkled his nose, and said, "Well, I just know the dinosaur I got last year had a price tag on the box and I don't know why Santa Claus would need a price tag on a toy he was giving away for Christmas."
He was quite convincing in his argument and I could see the magic of Christmas slipping away. Just in the nick of time, however, the little girl responded by saying, "Don't be ridiculous, you know momma and daddy couldn't possibly afford all those presents."
I'll have to say she hit the nail on the head as I fanned my smoking credit cards.
This little incident did disturb me because I don't want the kids to lose the magic so soon. Only a few weeks ago, my son and daughter were helping my mother cook some type cake. To fully understand what I am about to say, you must know that each time my little girl lost a tooth, the tooth fairy would magically spread fairy dust throughout the room. On at least one of these occasions, the toothfairy was short on fairy dust, so I substituted ordinary baking flour spread throughout the floor. The little girl was none the wiser and insisted I sweep the powder up into a sandwich baggie, which she then took to her grandmother as proof the tooth fairy had sprinkled fairy dust.
Well, after cooking with my mother, my little girl told me, "You know daddy we were helping grandmother cook and we tasted the flour and it tastes just like fairy dust." Hmmm, imagine that.
If I could, I'd keep them just the age they are forever. They're sweet and innocent and everything they discover is new and exciting. Recently, I was playing with our rat terrier, Levi, and picking at the little boy. He adores the rat terrier, even though it has bitten him in the face twice, and Levi is the only thing in the house which comes close to equaling his terrorizing ability.
I asked him if he loved me or Levi the most. He responded by saying, "I don't know. You didn't tell me you were gonna ask me such a tough question. I love you both, will I have to give Levi back if I say I love you the most?"
Well, I guess you need to be careful on what you ask, but I assured the little boy he could keep Levi and I'd keep hoping I'd come in first.
As a final thought, the kids were recently singing nursery rhyme type songs in the backseat of the car, but substituting my name for characters in the song. The songs weren't particularly flattering, so I began to sing a song that basically said I am the greatest daddy, you must consider me the greatest daddy, no one is greater than me, blah, blah, blah.
The children tolerated this display rather well, considering my limited singing ability, when the little boy finally said, "Daddy you know you're not the greatest. We love you, but only Jesus is the greatest."
I guess that about sums it all up. Hope you all have a great and wonderful Christmas. I'll be working hard to stay ranked ahead of Levi.
Contact columnist T. Gamble at firstname.lastname@example.org.