First, thanks to everyone for the birthday well-wishes - my inbox was filled with all kinds of love this morning. It's been a pretty damn good day overall.
What is weighing on my mind, though, is how challenging this month has been so far. And it's only the fifth day, people. And I blame the ever-elusive Mrs. Smith, Monkey Man's teacher.
It all started yesterday. Apparently, there is actually a Jewish kid in Monkey Man's class, a real rarity in these white-bread parts. So Max's mom came in to school yesterday and taught the class a little about Hanukkah - they made latkes, they played with a dreidel (and she actually taught them how to play properly) and she showed them how to light the menorah. Monkey Man came home and harangued us for hours. Why don't we have a menorah? Why can't we play with OUR dreidel? Why don't we celebrate Hanukkah? I patiently explained things the best that I could - I told him the story of Hanukkah, what the differences in beliefs are for our religion (we are kind of a mix of Methodist and Baptist) versus what the Jewish faith believes, and all that stuff. See, I grew up in New Jersey where a good 50% of my friends were Jewish, so I have some basic knowledge about that kind of stuff. Joey, not so much - I think the nearest Jewish person was probably a good 75 miles away.
This morning, Monkey Man got up in a little bit of a funk. And when I asked him what happened, he told me that he was upset that we're not Jewish. "Gosh," I said to Joey, "if he's this upset over Hanukkah, I can hardly wait for Ramadan and Kwanzaa."
Tonight, it was St. Nicholas. I guess maybe Joey had never heard of St. Nicholas before - or if he had, he never had really learned anything about the traditions. My family lived in Germany for several years back in the early 1960's, so I grew up knowing a little bit about St. Nicholas. So tonight, when I went upstairs to put laundry away I overheard Joey talking to Monkey Man while he was giving him a bath, and Monkey Man was in tears because Joey told him that St. Nicholas didn't exist and he didn't know anything about some shoe thing (which is that kids leave their shoes outside and St. Nicholas puts gifts in the shoes).
Dear God, it's going to be a long damn month. He's only been learning about holidays from around the world since yesterday and we've already had two nights full of meltdowns because we're not Jewish and we don't get presents in our shoes.
Ya know something cool I got for my birthday? Some new blog bling.
Aimee over at Greeblemonkey nominated me for the Blogger's Choice Awards. Something about being the Hottest Mommy Blogger? Who, me? Competing with such hotness as Aimee and Gretchen?
Anyhow, I am shamelessly whoring myself on this one. Click over on the button at the right to vote for me. Vote early, vote often, and make sure you vote for Aimee and Gretchen too. They are two hot mamas that I'd love to lose to anyday.