As I’ve mentioned in a couple of my recent blog entries, my husband and I are making a Herculean effort to have nice dinners as a family. At times, we succeed quite well. Other times, we fail miserably.
Just before we sat down this evening, Chloe got into big trouble for yelling at us because we told her she had to turn off the TV and eat dinner. As an aside, you know you’re one of those parents who is causing the collapse of civilization and the demise of childhood-as-we-know-it when your kid is in hysterics because she’s missing a never-seen episode of “Scooby Doo.” After meting out her punishment: no TV for three days, to which she responded not unlike Pierre in “I’m Really Rosie,” (i.e., “I don’t care!”) Chloe finally came to the dinner table. I was expecting that this meal would fall into the “fail miserably” category based on the grunting and groaning spewing from our daughter’s mouth on her way to her seat.
But, to my astonishment, it was a very fun meal. After talking about school for a bit, and our friends coming to visit us from Texas tomorrow, the conversation turned towards a catalog that I received in the mail. The cover displayed a whimsical illustration of a reindeer with a nose like Rudolph’s. Sophie kept calling it a cow. Chloe, who loves to hear Sophie repeat everything she says, asked her little sister to repeat “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” which she did enthusiastically.
If, like me, you grew up in a household that made an annual tradition of watching the “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” special on TV, you start singing the song as soon as there’s any mention of the name Rudolph. Which is exactly what I did. With accompaniment from Chloe, and dancing moves from Sophie. Papa, who is French, had no idea what we were singing. He just sat there with a vague smile and looked, well, French.
After we tired of “Rudolph,” Chloe serenaded us with a charming “Alouette.” Papa participated for that one; it’s practically as important to the French as “La Marseillaise.” Sophie’s favorite song, “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star,” followed.
I would have filmed this heartwarming episode and posted it here, but for the fact that we are not the Von Trapp family from “The Sound of Music.” Not by a long shot. In fact, our singing as a quartet is pretty painful, and my solo singing is excruciating. My daughters’ chanting is slightly less off-key, but they can get by on their adorableness. I can’t, and I’m not a masochist.
So, for lack of accompanying video, you can enjoy this sneak peek of my favorite holiday cartoon here.