The rest of the world can talk about the election– at our house it’s Super Xander Tuesday! Cute Xander is nine today.
Xander could have simplified things just a bit by being born on my birthday– he was supposed to come that day and simply refused. I remember crying the entire day, absolutely certain that I would stay pregnant forever. I never miss an opportunity to remind him of his tardy arrival. 😉
Three days later he arrived: Alexander Christoph Baptiste Lehnardt. My mother in law and I were both baptized on Feb 5th so I added Baptiste at the last minute without even asking Erik’s permission.
It’s a powerful name and it fits Xander. Smart, athletic and fiery tempered, Xander is a force of nature at home. He is always fighting to keep up with the big boys and maintain equal status. Sadly, he is known for saying the most garbage can words (idiot, stupid, dummy) but is also the child who brings me sweet notes and tells me almost daily “You’re the best mom in the whole world!”
Xander has played the violin for– dare I admit how truly crazy I am?– 3.5 years. I think he thought that if he drove me crazy I would let him quit. Little does he know how stubborn I really am. He’s finally caught the vision in recent months (Christmas music helped a lot) and last week when he was going over a particularly difficult piece said, “Shh, mom. I’ve almost figured it out.” And then he practiced and practiced until it was right. I was stunned.
At school Xander is seated next to a braggart bully that the teacher said other kids have transferred out of the class simply to get away from. His teacher tell me that the bully can say ANYTHING to Xander and my boy will just shrug and say, “Hmm, that’s nice.” See, there are advantages to having all those brothers.
Xander’s absolute favorite activity is building box houses. He begs his brothers and sister to create fabulous cardboard mansions with him. Happily, my store keeps us supplied with lots of boxes. This is their creation Sunday; be sure to note the periscope and window boxes.
The only present Xander asked for this year is a WebKinz. Mary got one for her birthday and the boys are simply enthralled by it. For the uninitiated it is a stuffed animal with a a code that lets you enter an online world. It’s pretty cute.
The greatest miracle of WebKinz is that it motivates Gabriel and Mary to actually do chores. The older kids are really concerned that I am spoiling Gabe and Mary horribly (they may be right) and that they will grow up to be selfish ingrates. But look, the promise of computer time inspires even these two slackers to unload the dishwasher.