Friday, December 16, 2011

No Joke

I got up this morning to make cinnamon rolls for one of the kids.

I met up with my sister for an appointment, and then I came home and whipped out 2 dozen pepperoni rolls.

My niece and nephew were coming to have supper, and to move Dylan's childhood bedroom outfit to a new place, to another little boy. Danny walked around in pants that were too big around for his non-existant butt, and we kept tugging them up. We all moved furniture, and talked and laughed.

While we were on the second floor, I said to little Abby, "Wait, wait for me. I have something that you will love," and I darted up the stairs to the third floor playroom to retrieve the two bags of balls. Their mother looked doubtful as I came back with them, but I assured her that it would be fine, that they were balls that could be thrown in the house, with no worries about damage.

What a fine time we had, throwing the balls about. I had an idea. "Let's dump them all down the stairs!" and we did. We gathered them up over and over again, and Sarah hauled them to the top of the stairs to dump them all. They bounced up and down, step by step, a primary colored waterfall richocheting everywhere. And the kids waited at the bottom of the steps wide eyed with the excitement of one hundred balls headed straight for them, and over them, and all around them. The looks on their faces was priceless.

We said grace, a never ending grace, because there are a lot of people that need prayer, along with a friend's lost dog, and supper eventually came, loud, messy, with spills. Abby loves pepperoni rolls and enjoys singing little 'dipping' songs to herself as she dunks her pepperoni roll in the sauce.

Abby recorded a new greeting for my answering machine. "Merry Chrissmiss. Leave a message," she said.

Danny darted everywhere.

There were calls for the potty, and shrieking and running feet.

At one point their father looked at me, and said, "So. Are you sorry we're here?" and I looked at him. "No," I said. I think that he thought I was joking.

They've left now. The kitchen is put back to rights. A dozen pepperoni rolls are cooling. 100 balls in their net bags carried back to the third floor. The house once again settles into quiet as Shadowfax plays quietly from another room.

No, Jim. I'm not sorry at all. No joke.

I did some small Christmas shopping today as I killed time between grocery shopping and my appointment. I walked into Cara's favorite book store to buy her some sort of a history book. While there, I got the idea to look at the children's books for William. I found a Winnie the Pooh collection printed the year I was born, and I had that in my hand. I wanted to give him the stories that I loved as a child. I had decided on Winnie the Pooh, but... but...then I saw...Uncle Remus stories! Oh. How I loved Uncle Remus as a child.

In these politically correct days, you do not hear much about Uncle Remus. A shame too. I believe with all my heart that 'all men (and women) are created equal', but 150 years ago, there lived an old man, a slave, and he told wonderful stories, and those stories kept him alive. Today, 50 years after I first heard those stories, I reverently pulled the book from the shelf, and flipped through the pages, looking at the illustrations, remembering, smiling, and today, in Warren, Uncle Remus breathed life once more. He will breathe life still once again, as a little boy sits before me to hear those stories for the first time.


ellie k said...

that sounded like so much fun, I love to see kids have fun with simple things like balls. laughter in a house helps make it a home. Merry Christmas

Kelly said...

I haven't thought about Uncle Remus in ages. I was more into Uncle Wiggley. ;)
Wasn't Uncle Remus what Disney based Song of the South on?

Anonymous said...

UNCLE WIGGLEY?!!!! OH! I forgot about Uncle Wiggley. Excellent suggestion, Kelly! And yes, Song of the South is based on Uncle Remus, but Kelly, if you have not read those stories, you have to! They are rich and lovely and detailed, and funny! There is more magic in one old man's stories than there is in the whole movie. Trust me.

The rest of you? A challenge: what was the book you loved as a child? What is the book that no grandchild should grow to adulthood without knowing?

*waits with pencil and paper*

Kelly said...

Okay, Debby....go back and read this entry from ages ago at my blog:

Lots of good ideas there!

Scotty said...

Voyage To The Bottom Of The Sea was a fave of mine.

ellie k said...

when you have had time to sit and get a deep breath will you post your pepperoni roll recipe. everytime you mention them they sound better. I think my family would like these very much, thank you

Debby said...

Hello, Ellie K.

These are very simple. and

They are also very good. I suppose like a pizza turned inside out. You can also make them with chicken or turkey and cheddar cheese and broccoli. Or steak and green peppers and onions and mushrooms and cheddar. Or even a breakfast pastry. It's all about the dough.

*Looks over shoulder nervously.*

Anybody seen Roland?

jeanie said...

I loved some Enid Blyton books when I was a kid - and luckily my mother kept a few for me.

Who knew there was such an offhand focus on smoking in Brer Rabbit? When I finally read some to my daughter, I was editing quite furiously!!!

A Novel Woman said...

My kids loved a book called Paper Bag Princess by Robert Munsch. I recommended it recently to a friend in Brazil for her little guy, and he loved it too! Also Thomas' Snowsuit (same author.)

The link to your pepperoni rolls doesn't work and I can't find it in the archives. Every time I read that you made them I start to salivate. I really do have to try them. Once I find the recipe again. (Off to look, 2009 and it looks like the month of April...)

Oh, and I LOVED that you threw those balls down the stairs!! That's the kind of thing they'll remember forever.

A Novel Woman said...

Ah HA, found it. April 3rd, 2009!

And the books I loved as an older kid were the Narnia series, and the Anne of Green Gables series.

quid said...

A lovely trip into those childhood books. I usually purchase Goodnight Moon and the Very Hungry Caterpillar when babes are born... harking back to my kids favorites, not mine!


Debby said...

I never worried so much about the smoking part. I worried more about passing the stories along without the 'n' word. They are stories recounted by people years ago, stories of outsmarting the powers that be, stories of trickery and winning. Stories of encouragement for an oppressed people who needed to hear stories about winning. Late edit: Just found out that Uncle Remus is a fictional character. I cannot tell you how disappointed that is. I always thought that he was real. I thought that I read that. I thought that Joel Chandler Harris had heard the stories from an elderly black slave during his childhood. He did not. He was the son of a poor family. His stories are compilations from a number of different story tellers. So. This puts a different spin on it. Still though, it is important that the author thought these stories to be valuable and worth preserving. I think that he was right. All these years later, I do believe that he was right.