Saturday, October 24, 2009

Nine-year olds are a hoot.

Nine-year old in the house!

Yesterday was Charlie's ninth birthday. A few weeks ago I approached him and suggested a small pizza and cake party here at the house with a few of his besties. But haven't you heard? Those kinds of parties are for babies. The slumber party is where it's at. For nine-year old boys at least.

I dreaded the day when the sleepover party invites started rolling in, because I wasn't ready for it. I'll admit I'm a little overprotective, and I offer no apologies for it. It's a scary world out there, and the thought of just handing over one of my kids to someone I barely know for a whole night freaked me out a bit. It still does. About a year ago, Charlie was invited to his first-ever sleepover party, but I was okay with it, because I knew all the boys attending and I knew the parents. I trust my boy too, and I thought it was time to loosen the apron strings a bit, and I let him attend. He was fine, there was no 3 a.m. crying pick-up call, and since then he's been to one more slumber party. So it was just natural that he wanted to have his own slumber party, which Bill and I finally relented and let him have.

He invited six boys, but only four could attend. I shouldn't use the word "only", because four boys + my three boys = plenty o' boys in my house. Plenty.

The boys are all great kids from wonderful families, with impeccable manners, and I heard many "pleases" and "thank yous". They had a fabulous time. But if any of the parents are reading my blog, I apologize if your son is a bit tired today. The boys all talked a big game, saying that they weren't going to sleep at all. They were going to stay up all night and talk, watch movies, play video games and tell ghost stories. Bill and I nodded our heads at this big-kid bravado, but we were both thinking, "Yeah right. They say that now, but they'll all be passed out by midnight or before."

Well call me a big, fat, chump.

Those boys have stamina and energy that I did not believe was possible. When I say that there was no slumbering at our slumber party, I mean that there was no slumbering at our slumber party. At all. Not a wink. No sleepytime. Nada. Not a snore. Not a drifting eyelid. Noth. Ing. Twinkle, no.

I will never doubt the declarations of a nine-year old boy ever again. I guess when they say what they mean, they mean what they say.

It was all very wholesome fun, so Bill and I didn't have to do really any disciplining, and we turned the TV and video games off around midnight, hoping the Sandman would be along soon to induce them off to dreamland. Didn't happen.

To say that we are bleary-eyed today is a huge understatement. Actually, I shouldn't complain, because I was able to sleep in my big, comfy bed and catch a few winks, but poor Bill slept on the family room couch so he could monitor the goings-on down in the finished basement area.

Therefore, we will be having lights-out at 7:00 p.m. tonight. Or at least trying to.

One of the best parts of the night was eavesdropping on the boys' conversations. It was like reading the most entertaining blog, or watching the most riveting reality show. It was that good. And that hilarious. The topics ranged from the death of Michael Jackson to the death of Billy Mays. Yes, my friends. They're nine. So the sum total that they know of Michael Jackson is that he was a bizarre man who died "after taking too many bad drugs." (I was glad they made this conclusion. Yes kids! Sing it loud and proud! Drugs are bad! Say "no!" to drugs! Drugs kill!) Then the imitations of Billy Mays came out of the woodwork. "KABOOM!" "Oxy-clean!" "The Billy Mays Sandwich Stacker!"

These conversations were golden. It wasn't even necessary for Bill and I to speak. We were happy to just listen and observe.

After dinner and cake, the boys retreated to the basement for a rousing game of "Super Mario Brothers Super Sluggers" on the Wii. They set up their sleeping bags, and George asked me to set up his little shark tent, in which he wanted to sleep. So picture this situation. Me, buried in the jaws of a huge canvas shark, trying to insert tent poles. Five nine-year old boys plus George and Henry, cracking each other up, taking turns playing a Wii game.

While buried in Jaws, I suddenly hear one of the boys say to Charlie, "Charlie! Look! I unlocked Tiny Kong! 'Member I was telling you about her? She's the one that is H-O-T!"

Hot? Did someone just tell my son that a cartoon character was hot? I was intrigued to say the least. These guys are just on the cusp of starting to notice girls, (I am dreading the innocent years being replaced by the hormonal teenage years) so I wanted to see what they were talking about. I managed to extricate myself from the jaws of the great white, and I looked at the TV screen.

It was just in time to hear Charlie say, "Oh yeah! You're right! She is H-O-T!"

And here is our resident hottie:

I almost choked on my laughter. I was dying. Dy. Ing.

She's a monkey, people. With banana ponytails. And a sassy little midriff top. And an oh-so-gangsta streetwear knit cap.


I loved how they spelled, "H-O-T", too. Like it was something to be secretive about.

Ah...youth. the way, kiddos, Mom is 35. She knows a thing or two about spelling.

So there I was, pulling my head out of the shark, thinking I'm going to see this curvaceous hottie cavorting across the screen (well, as curvaceous as they get for a game rated "E" for Everyone) and I see a monkey. A monkey.

Oh, it was just too funny. But of course, I didn't let them see my laughter. On the outside, I was all cool-as-a-cucumber, but on the inside I was all busting out the laughs like it was comedy hour.

"So Char, what's that character's name?" I asked.

"Tiny Kong."

"Is she the H-O-T one?"

I couldn't resist.

"Yeah mom."

"Why is she H-O-T?"

"Well because she's all cute and teenager-ey."

Ah. Interesting. My son likes sassy older women. Good to know.

I thought the boys would go for the cute Princess Peach.

But maybe she's just too wholesome in her cute pink gym shorts, and shirt that actually reaches her waist. She doesn't give away the goodies for free.

Now this is the kind of girl you bring home to mother. Not that floozy, Tiny Kong.

Tiny Kong looks like she wants to cut you if you mess with her. But maybe that's the allure.


Welcome to nine years old. The tweener years are here.

What a ride it has been.

And still loving every minute.

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