Tuesday, July 1, 2008

More Tom Sawyer

The crush has been undoubtedly confirmed. Caroline received a gift in the mail Saturday--a CD with the songs of the Tom Sawyer musical and a DVD of the production that her Aunt Meesh directed at her school. Caroline was overjoyed. She wanted to listen to and watch them both immediately.

I let her listen to the CD in bed Saturday night (which was a mistake--she listened to it twice and still wasn't ready to go to sleep), and then she watched the DVD Sunday afternoon after church. I wish you could have seen her face as she watched. She grinned from ear to ear when Tom came on-stage. She grinned when he did funny things and ornery things. She grinned when people got on to him ("This is the part where Aunt Polly pulls his ear!"). She grinned when he sang and when he talked. We were eating lunch while watching it and she barely ate unless we reminded her to.

I tried to take a few pictures but the angle isn't great since I was trying to stay out of the way of the tv. :)

This morning I went to get her out of bed to get ready for swimming lessons and she was lying there, already awake, listening to the CD again. Often she climbs into our bed once it's light outside, but this morning she told me, "I thought to myself, 'Mama might still be asleep so I'll just listen to my music and wait for her in my bed. Was that a good idea?'" So basically the first thing on her mind was not climbing into bed with us but listening to Tom Sawyer again. All throughout the day today she would go into her room, listen to a few songs, and then pause it for later.

We had the neighbor girls over to play this evening and I overheard a great little bit of dialogue. The girls were huddled on the couch, shrieking at the imaginary lions all around them, and Caroline came up with a plan, "Hey, guys! [girls still shrieking] Hey, guys! [still shrieking] Guys! Listen! I have a brother named Tom Sawyer and he pulls ears, and he can pull those lions' ears and get them away from us!"

The girls had no idea what she was talking about, but it sounded good.

Shortly after Caroline came home from Chicago in May, I dug through the book boxes that are still packed up in the garage and found my old copy of Tom Sawyer. I remembered it having some pictures and I thought it was abridged, so I figured it might be something Caroline would like. Well, it turns out it is not abridged. It does have a few color pictures but the rest are just black-and-white sketches at each chapter heading. I wasn't sure how it would go, but Saturday night I told her we could read it. She listened through the whole first chapter. At one point she was fidgety, so I said, "We're almost done," and she said, "I wasn't hoping that," meaning--that's not what I meant by wiggling around like that.

Sunday we read all of Chapter 2 and she loved it. In that chapter Tom gets his friends to whitewash the fence for him. They actually pay him to let them do it. While we were reading, Caroline made a connection with the musical--"that's where they say, 'don't feel like work to me!'" She also noted "that's not what his hair really looks like." The boy in the book illustrations has blonde hair. The "real" Tom Sawyer (Michelle's student) has dark brown hair.

And, she tells us, Aunt Polly and Injun Joe and Huck Finn are all just pretending to be Aunt Polly and Injun Joe and Huck Finn. But Tom Sawyer and Becky Thatcher aren't pretending. Translated: the Tom Sawyer and Becky Thatcher you see on-stage (and that Caroline met) are the real deal. The rest of them are actors.

Tonight before bed we were all sitting on the couch and Jeff said something and I asked, "Who?" and he said [predictably], "Joe." I knew that if I said, "Joe who?" he would say "Joe Mama." Ha ha ha. So I just said, "Who?" again and he said "Joe" again and I said, "No, really, WHO??" And Caroline piped up, "JOE HARPER!!"

Can you guess where she got the name Joe Harper? That's right, he's a character in . . . Tom Sawyer. I am pretty sure we will never hear the end of this. I am pretty sure that in about a week she'll have the entire musical memorized. It's a cute little obsession.


  1. Auntie Meesh :-)July 3, 2008 at 12:59 PM

    I'm thrilled that Caroline has enjoyed Tom Sawyer so much! The Becky Thatcher bonnet is on the way. I gave it to Jeff today. I hope Caroline has fun acting out the scenes. Thanks for blogging...

  2. This is TOO funny! I love all the Tom Sawyer stories