I took David and Jacob hiking last weekend on the Billy Goat trail. We had a great time. It's a strenuous hike with a lot of rock scrambling. I knew they would love the first mile or so but was worried that they couldn't handle four miles of climbing up and sliding down rocks. They loved it. I had a hard time keeping up with them. Then we started walking back to the car. It was a leisurely mile walk on a flat path. It nearly ended them. The whining was beyond what I thought possible. I almost had to walk far ahead and pretend I didn't know them. In the future, I will save the "I just finished an awesome hike" candy bar until we actually reach the car.
I read Room by Emma Donahue. It was a good read but...really, really disturbing. She took me to the edge of what I could handle in suspense and horror. My favorite part was the way she portrayed the five year old narrator. She did a fantastic job of representing what is to think and speak at that age. The room is not heated, it gets "hotted". My second son is five. Until I read that book, I hadn't noticed how often he turns adjectives and nouns into verbs.
I read The Tale of Despereaux to the boys a few weeks ago. It's my favorite read aloud this year. It's a page turner and beautifully captures human nature in a way that's still appropriate for children. A bad guy is not a bad guy. He has a story. There is a reason he became that way. Anyway, in explaining how a young girl lost her hearing, the author writes:
The less Mig heard, the less she understood. The less she understood, the more things she did wrong; and the more things she did wrong, the more clouts to the ear she received, and the less she heard. This is what is known as a vicious circle.
Then my five year old, Jacob pronounced emphatically:
We do NOT want to get vicious circled.
That's right, buddy.