Seven

No, I’m not thinking of the Brad Pitt / Morgan Freeman Seven(or Se7en, as it’s apparently called on IMDB)… although I do like that movie.

Justin doing… yeah, I don’t really know what that is, but he does it a lot.

I’m thinking of this crazy guy…

Yesterday was Justin’s 7th birthday, and we got to celebrate with some presents from his grandparents and from us. We also nommed some cake and ice cream, and I also had time to sit and think about Justin.

More than any of the others, Justin is our “Family Circus” child. By that I mean I can picture him bouncing around and running around leaving some little dotted trail over furniture and walls and fences and cars as he unleashes his pent-up energy upon our neighborhood or house (or both).

But as is typical of children this age, he is serene while sleeping, and you can almost picture the glowing gold halo over his head.

Yeah, the one that morphs into horns and a pointed tail as soon as he wakes up.

I stopped in his room before going to work on Friday, to wish him happy birthday and spend a few minutes with him. Then I came home to ambulances and crashing and running around and insanity.

Then I added to it by giving him cake and ice cream and Lego sets.

But sure enough, bed time rolled around, and again, the spiral of destruction stops, the horns vanish, the halo reappears for a brief moment, and he crawls into bed, wrapped up in his blanket, grinning at the thought of playing Lego Batman 2 on the Xbox in the morning.

I played around on the piano a bit, trying to capture some of that transition throughout the day. I think the middle part could stand to be much more frenetic, to be true to the source of its inspiration. But I’m content with how it turned out.

Back to his birthday…

Justin’s favorite

He is absolutely insane about Angry Birds, so we got him some pencil toppers with his favorite bird. That present was the distraction, because he could see that one through the bag when we brought it into the house a few weeks ago.

I don’t know why Justin latched onto Angry Birds, but he sure did. I think he has them bouncing around in his head, smashing through ice and wood and stones, and crushing green pigs. I mean, it’s his favorite thing, that’s cool… but it goes from “I enjoy this hobby” to “I can talk about nothing else” most days.

“Why did the chicken cross the road?”
“I don’t know, Justin. Why?”
“BECAUSE ANGRY BIRDS.”

It’s pretty much like that all day long.

He also loves Lego, and there’s a red Ninjago ninja named Kai that apparently is the coolest thing ever. Justin has been asking/begging/pleading for the Kai’s Motorcycle set for quite some time. For a while, it disappeared off the local shelves, and that worked out really well for keeping him in suspense. “I don’t know if we’ll be able to get it for your birthday, Justin. The stores don’t have it.”

The ninja in question

Then we stopped by Target with him one day and they had about 80 of the sets on the shelf.

Still, we were able to sneak it past him by getting it on a different trip to the store while Deborah stayed home with the kids, so at least it was a genuine surprise.

He was ecstatic opening his presents, and Jonathan (11 years old) was picking on him, mimicking his outbursts. Jonathan’s too old to be all crazy about Legos or Angry Birds or any of that. You could almost hear the smug thoughts in his head: “Haha, look at the little brother freaking out about his favorite Lego set. Isn’t he quite energetic? How quaint.”

Justin ran off to put together Kai’s motorcycle, and came back with the included ad for other Ninjago sets, screaming, “AAAAH! They have a two-headed Lego dragon with THE GREEN NINJA!”

Guess who was rushing, wide-eyed, to take a look at this Lego set, and who flipped out when he saw that it was really a four-headed Lego dragon. “That set has Lord Garmadon and his son Lloyd Garmadon, who unleashed all the snakes. Look at that! They made a four-headed dragon out of all the other dragons, and it’s the Green Ninja’s dragon! That’s soooo cool!!!”

Four heads! Green ninja! $225 on Ebay!

Yeah, who’s laughing now, bud?

Hint: it’s your Mom and me.

Back to Justin…

Justin’s favorite thing from his grandparents is this realistic model ambulance toy with lights and sirens and all that a seven year old needs. He was driving that all over the place when I got home from work.

Yes, my parents got him noisy toys for his birthday.

On purpose.

I have to figure out what I’ve done to offend them. (kidding)

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