He's also been playing Santa quite a bit, donning his Santa hat (which is too small and barely hangs on to the back of his head), building a sleigh out of footstools and ordering around the reindeer in Santa's very authoritative voice ("ON Dasher....ON Dancer....ON Cupid"), checking his list (which happens, it seems, to be housed in the text for the class I'm preparing to teach this quarter; unfortunately for me this causes some challenges in preparation), and bringing different presents to those who deserve it. Oftentimes Santa will ask what we'd like to get. When I reply, for instance, "an airplane" knowing full well he has a dozen toy airplanes at hand, he'll say, "I'm so, so sorry that I have no airplanes." Then one will appear.
This brings me to a wonderful story about Christmas that, I promise, ends well. As I mentioned, he only wanted a Batcave. He told Santa in person, he told the Elf on the Shelf repeatedly, he offered to give up other presents so that Santa would know what he really wanted. In fact, he dictated a letter to Santa to ensure a Batcave, despite telling him 4-5 times on his lap, I'm digressing for a moment to transcribe it here (tried to attach for added value of baby voice and interesting pronunciation, but was unable due to technical difficulties):
How are your reindeer? I want my; I, I, I LOVE you! Thank you for coming, and for taking pictures (I believe this refers to having his picture taken with Santa), and don't forget to know I want...a Batcave. a BATCAVE. I want...a Batcave. Don't forget, I want, to know, I want...a Batcave. (Then, an aside to his uncle who's writing the note for him,) "Are you drawing a Batcave?"
I find it hilarious for several reasons:
- I love the change from, "I want" to "I love you!" Hey - put in a good word before you go for what you want. Approach is everything.
- I love that he asked for the Batcave, what, 4 times in 20 seconds?
- I love at the end, where he asks his uncle whether he's drawing a Batcave? See, it's hard to get good help these days. It's important to follow up in case your instructions weren't clear.
Back to our story - jump to Christmas morning. Aidan gets about halfway through his multitude of presents, looks around, and doesn't see a package large enough to be the Batcave. He becomes visibly upset, almost welling up and says something along the lines of, "I don't see a Batcave." We'd been having him "read" the tags to us - he recognizes an S, D, M and A and could tell whether things were to or from Santa, Daddy, Mommy or Aidan. We asked him to read the tag on the next present from Santa (you could tell it was from Santa because of the wrapping paper), and this is what he "read:"
I know you've been a really good boy and I'm so, so sorry but I forgot your Batcave. I'm sorry.
Later, of course, there was another present we hadn't seen way behind the tree. Wouldn't you know it was a Batcave from Santa?! When Daddy asked him how there could be a Batcave when Santa wrote a note apologizing that he forgot it, A told us, "I think I was just messing with you about the note." Ya think? My hunch is that this "not having" whatever we ask for from Santa goes back to the Batcave experience.
I love that kid.