Saturday, November 26, 2011

Character Building

Owen's school skirts the dressing up for Halloween issue by having a "Storybook Character Day". Moms across the neighborhood groan because the Halloween costume most of the kids are wearing is NOT literacy related. So, we end up with two costumes. The girls have a ton of dress up clothes (Angelina Ballerina and Pinkalicious were the most popular, Owen said), but the dudes? From where does the second costume come?

Even though Owen had a Star Wars costume planned (and plenty of Star Wars literature to carry around school), he wanted to dress up like one of the guys from his current favorite book "The Official Guide to Lego Ninjago". Yes, I realize that this is a lame attempt at a "book", but give a 6 year old guy free reign at the school "book" fair, and you get what you get. I said fine, as long as he picked a hero.

You see, if you're going to emulate someone ALL day, I'd rather it not be Lord Garmedon, whose hobbies are "planning escape and revenge against Sensui Wu; lying and deceiving." (source: The Official Guide to Lego Ninjago). We need the villains as non-examples, but I don't need my son to be mimicking every evil move in an effort to stay in character all day. I steered him towards the heroes section and asked him to find a character who had traits he admired or would want to see in himself. He finally picked Kai, the red ninja. What character traits did he admire? "Mom, look at his hobbies: Music & breakdancing." Close enough...and they do have similar angry eyebrows.

As Owen sat at the kitchen table trying to brainstorm how to match the costume with what we have at the house (read: my mom is too cheap to buy a second costume), I read on about Ninja Kai...and immediately started laughing.

"Brave, reckless, daring, stubborn, inspiring, infuriating - all of these describe Kai, the Ninja of Fire. Of all my ninja, he was the most difficult to train...not because he lacked the skill, but because he lacked patience and was reluctant to listen to anyone else. Still, I saw potential in him." (again, "The Official Guide...")

If you know O, you are shaking your head slowly in agreement. If you don't know O, you do now. Psychologists theorize that core personality traits are developed before the age of 6. From this point on, I know that I am parenting the Ninja of Fire.

"Kai" with his Grammy (as the Cat in the Hat)

For those of you wondering how you can recreate this outfit at home:
  • black skeleton Halloween pj pants on inside out
  • red school shirt, also on inside out (a plain red t-shirt would be too classy)
  • Mom's black knee-high tied around your waist
  • put on another red shirt, then take it off, but not all the way. Stop it at your big melon. Then drape it around your neck like a lady and have your mom safety pin it.
  • Finally, get your mom's big hair-tie know the one like the soccer girls wear and put it on like Rambo. I know you don't feel like Rambo...if you were any older than 6, you might realize that you actually look like a cross-dressing sleepwalker, but since you are 6, you happily march off to school as a ninja in a homemade costume.
  • Cost: $0 now, hundreds in therapy later.


Kelly said...

Love this post! :) Yes it kind of stresses me out about the age 6 thing, since next week is #5 around here. I may be asking for ninja tips for years to come!

Jodi said...

Ok, that entire post was priceless. But the "Cost" at the end made me nearly wet my pants.

Miss you. Glad the new job is going well!