Thursday, April 29, 2010

Interview with a Vampire, over milk and cookies

(and by Vampire, I mean boy, and by boy, I mean my son. Translated for your convenience.)
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Me: Flaco, what kind of girl do you want to marry someday?
Flaco: I want to marry a girl who is a good eater. She should know how to make rice and beans. She should like to dance and climb trees. I think she should cover her hair with a scarf.
Me: (Looking at Matthew, eyebrow raised) You hear that?
Matthew: You think a headscarf is pretty, Flaco?
Flaco: Yes, it is very pretty. And she should have yellow eyes. That would be pretty too.
Me: Huh.
Matthew: Okay.

Friday, April 09, 2010

The Epic Adventure of Jimobe: A Tale of Food and Misfortune

Once upon a time, there was a tiny little boy named Jimobe. Jimobe was crawling around on the living room floor when his mother came in and gave him an ice cream on a stick. He started to eat it until he realized it had a worm and a locust in it! "Guacala" he said, and spit it out. But then he saw that the ice cream still looked tasty, so he ate it up. Then his mother walked in again and swallowed Jimobe whole. He said "Auxilio! I'm in here, mamita!" but it was too late. Fin!*
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*Flaco starts to endlessly ask for stories (A red mountain that has fire! Fyo getting sat on by an ostrich! Having a picnic in Nepal!) and after telling him five or six in a row, I say "Flaco, you tell me one," to which he always responds, "I can't mamita, I'm too small, too small." But the other day, to my surprise, he told a story. And here it is. His first-ever composition. I think Dostoevsky would be proud.

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

This girl, this girl

She ought to be on display much more often than she is. In honor of her nine month birthday, I will list nine facts to know about her!:
1. She has the chubbiest cheeks I've ever seen.
2. She sings "Yay yay yay yay yay" when she's happy. (Or when she's unhappy, but then it's very indignant sounding, kind of reproachful in fact.)
3. She looks precious in a hair bow.
4. She looks precious in frills.
5. She loves rice and beans. And bananas and oranges and avocados and peas.
6. She has a very long, skinny tongue.
7. She is extremely tapered, like a carrot. (A very cute carrot.)
8. She loves to swing and to go down slides.
9. She smiles at the drop of a hat. You can wink at her from across the room, and there it is, in a flash - her little nose crinkles, her little eyes light up, and she beams. She just beams.
I love this girl, love this girl. Oh habibi, happy birthday!

Friday, April 02, 2010

The Last Supper

Today is Friday, Good Friday, which means that it all started last night. On a Thursday, he broke bread and poured wine and explained how his body would be broken and his blood would be spilled. He washed their feet. He walked out to pray, alone; "and being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground." Judas arrived and kissed him.
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Today, he was beaten; it was the LORD's will to crush him and cause him to suffer. It was planned before the beginning of time. He hung and died; he cried out in a loud voice, he said "It is finished." The LORD had laid on him the iniquities of us all -all of our ugliness, all of our darkness- and in one sublime moment, the price was paid. He scorned its shame and sat down at the right hand of God.
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My son does not understand all of this. That a meal could represent the moment when the God of the universe had nails driven through his hands and feet, that a meal could be anything at all other than us sitting around our yellow table, this is something I cannot explain. But what I can explain, I do. And I remember the moment -and praise God for it, and tremble when I think of it- that we talked about the crucifixion, and then about the empty tomb. And I said "And why did Jesus come back to life?" and he looked at me with a mix of astonishment and wonder and said "Because he's God." That moment, when he suddenly realized that Jesus, whose cartooned image was covered in bruises and cuts, was one and the same as the God on page one who, with merely a word, created light in darkness; that it was God himself who offered himself in our place - how can this sentence even end? What words can do it justice? We sat together bent over a picture Bible while the angels rejoiced in Heaven.
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It bears repeating; it should be said a thousand times: Jesus, who died on the cross, he is God Almighty. He is strong, he is good; his love is incomprehensible, it's wide and long and high and deep, it's fierce and unrelenting. It is beyond understanding and yet not beyond reach of a two year old. My heart, it melts within me; that's my God, that's my God.