Today is Theo’s good friend Samuel’s birthday, and Theo had the special treat of being invited to his house after school for a playdate and dinner – on a school night. He and Samuel have been friends since kindergarten – so five years now – which is most of Theo’s life, and although they argue sometimes during their playtime, they are genuinely fond of each other. Mostly, their arguments are about whether dragons or other mythical creatures really exist, or whether they should play with Lego’s or a video game. But occasionally they have been more substantial, such as whether or not Theo will be going to hell because he’s not a Christian. Samuel is a Christian, and this particular conversation, held in the back of my car when they were both 8 years old, caused me to slow the car down and intervene, starting an impromptu discussion about having to understand that people can have different beliefs and learning to respect them. I think we sorted that one out before it got dangerous.
Samuel is always very welcome in our home. He is one of Theo’s most polite, friendly and affectionate friends, and it’s not unusual for him to take hold of my arm when he comes up to talk to me at school. An only child like Theo, he is good at conversing with adults and has become so used to spending time with us now that he is very comfortable in our home, and doesn’t hesitate to talk to me if Theo isn’t behaving like a gracious host during one of their playdates. Over the last few months, every time he has come to our house, he has picked up one of the four cute little Sockling sock puppets I have sitting on one of my book shelves. They were made by one of the talented mothers at our school, and we have bought them over the years from the school holiday boutique (http://planetsockling.blogspot.com). Though we don’t play with them much, we are very fond of the little fellows, and Samuel seems particularly drawn to one of them. Because he’s a kid and he’s very comfortable with us, he has not hesitated to ask us if he can have that one. Until now, Theo has not been willing to part with it. But today, I asked him again if he’d be ok giving it to Samuel as part of his birthday gift, and he actually said “yes.” Samuel was of course thrilled to finally receive the little Sockling he had coveted for so long. When I mentioned to Theo that I was planning on writing about this giveaway, he replied matter-of-factly, “Technically, Mommy, this isn’t your Giveaway.” He is right, of course, but I am going to count it anyway, while giving Theo full credit for sharing something special with his good friend.