Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Dinner Deals and Empathy

As previously mentioned, I'm having the dining room and kitchen floor repaired soon. Which means I've moved all my stuff out of the dining room, and a lot of stuff out of the kitchen, so the contractor can get to the floor. "Stuff" in this case includes the dining room table and all the chairs.

So we're eating in the living room, which for the kids is the biggest treat ever.

Except that the number of meals I can make that we can eat in the living room without making an enormous mess is pretty limited. So I told them last night that we'd have some occasional fast food.

Penny wanted Chick-fil-A. Alex wanted Burger King. (Mind you, both of them were voting based on which playground they favored rather than the food they wanted.)

There was no compromise, so eventually I told them to put a sock in it, and we went to the McDonald's drive-through and brought our dinner home. I asked Penny to please not get french fries, since her blood sugar has been wobbly lately, and as a consolation, I promised to heat up some brussels sprouts for her when we got home.




You heard that correctly. My daughter is willing to accept brussels sprouts as a fair trade for french fries.

I'm pretty sure it's one of the signs of the Apocalypse.

Anyway, we got home and I started divvying up burgers and sides and microwave-steaming some brussels sprouts, and they said, "Can we watch a movie while we eat? Pleeeeeeeeease?"

I intensely dislike the TV-while-eating phenomenon (largely because I am, myself, highly susceptible to distraction) but... no dining room table anyway. Might as well. "Okay, fine. What are we watching?"

Alex picked out Despicable Me, but Penny whined. Apparently, she doesn't like the minions. I am flabbergasted and sad; the minions are awesome. But it's not like I can force her to like them. Alex then picked out Monsters Inc.

Yeah, that's good. I haven't seen it in a while. So we popped it in and settled down to our dinner. The kids enjoyed it; they laughed riotously and asked me to rewind a scene or two so they could watch again. Then we got to the almost-end, where Sully has to take Boo home and then leave her... forever.

Alex lost it. He crawled into my lap and started sobbing his heart out.

I hugged him tight and promised him that it would be okay, reminded him that at the end, Sully gets to see Boo again, and he calmed down to watch again. But he snuggled up against me instead of returning to his previous seat on the ottoman, and failed to laugh at the wacky antics until they revealed Boo's mostly-repaired door.

I admit I was a little surprised; I wasn't sure, at 5, that he actually understood what was going on, or possessed enough empathy to be sad for others' partings. But apparently I was wrong.

Huhn. We may be in for a slightly rough period, if he's going to be that sensitive to movie mawkishness.

Well, at least he likes the minions.

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