We are still in the process of putting up our Christmas decorations, an activity which seems to last until I throw up my hands in exasperation and decide that enough is enough and the rest of the decorations should just go into the garage sale pile. David, however, was smitten the minute he saw the lights on our tree and actually, for the first time, participated in some of the decorating. I even allowed multiple ornaments to be hung on a single branch—oh, the horror--and have kept the rearranging to a minimum.
Packed in one of the seemingly endless boxes were some Fisher Price figurines, a feeble attempt to give little hands something festive to play with that is not fragile or a family heirloom. The set had originally been purchased for my niece (now in college) and is actually the remainder of a Christmas train, complete with the usual cast of characters—Santa, elves, reindeer, a tree and snowman, and a complete nativity set all thrown into the same box.
Interestingly, David has taken the time to separate the pieces. He has summarily rejected the Santa, his Christmas train and all of his cohorts, which is interesting because you would think he would be fascinated that the man gets to wear red from head to toe. But, since David does not really like to open presents and does not like new toys, I suppose he doesn't really see the need. Instead, he has been playing constantly with the nativity scene, plus the snowman and the fully decorated Christmas tree figurine thrown in just for kicks.
When you have such a severe communication gap with your child, it is difficult to know what they understand. At six, I would hope that David understands the difference between the commercial Christmas and the religious holiday, but I didn't really believe that he did. We are still working on yes/no questions in speech therapy and have not graduated to discussions of the secular versus the religious. His actions with the figurines made me hopeful, however. Maybe he really does "get it." Maybe he absorbs more than I give him credit for. And then I saw this
The whole cast of characters apparently left the scene of the nativity and hopped a ride on the nearest school bus. Sorry to quote James Taylor again, but we just bought tickets to his upcoming concert and I am reminded of his song "Home by Another Way" from the Never Die Young album:
Those magic men the Magi
Some people call them wise
Or Oriental, even kings
Well anyway, those guys
They visited with Jesus
They sure enjoyed their stay
Then warned in a dream of King Herod's scheme
They went home by another way.
So, did David imagine them all lining up in an orderly fashion and walking (backward, of course because David still walks backward) to the big yellow school bus? He always chooses the same wise man to be the driver, which is itself a miracle since his hands are full of gold (or frankincense or myrrh—I cannot tell because it is still in the box). The rest of the crew is just haphazardly thrown into the bus because, as you know, seatbelts are still not required on school buses, but I am sure they can make good time. I think they can take Santa and his Christmas train any day.