Thursday, January 8, 2009

Get Ready For Some Cute

But first, the not cute.

Jesus Christ, I think I liked photos of me taken with my old, less crystal clear camera more.

This is me, looking at the cute.

And this is the cute:

Last fall sometime (September? October?) there was a book fair at Jack's school. The one thing he wanted to buy was a Build a Book Kit.

We thought it was a little weird because he doesn't consistently like to draw, or at least he didn't until recently. We offered all kinds of other options to see if he wanted something else, but he insisted he wanted the Build a Book Kit. And he insisted that the book be about a cat.

We bought it for him and then never found a time to work on it with him. I would remember about it at inopportune times and then forget about it when it was a good time to work on it. And if you've ever read Stimeyland, you might be aware that Jack is the kind of kid that (a) has to be in the mood to work on something, and (b) will never just pipe up and say, "Hey, I want to work on that Build a Book Kit you bought me four months ago." Sam would. Jack would not.

So when I asked Jack if he wanted to work on it, and he said yes, I was really happy. Partly to work on an activity with Jack, but mostly just to get the goddamn thing done so it wasn't hanging over my head anymore.

When Jack is interested in something, he will work on it diligently and steadfastly until it is done. He was interested in this.

See how diligent and steadfast?

He made up the whole story by himself. I helped him spell some of the words, but he came up with the story and the pictures and design all by himself. I'm pretty proud of him. And really: the cute, the cute, oh my God, the cute.

I now present My Cat, written by 100 and illustrated by 1 [with commentary by Stimey]

Don't let the pseudonyms fool you;
"100" and "1" are both Jack.

On to Chapter 1.

"There is only one chapter," said Jack. And it goes like this:

"Chapter 1
123 the cat was hiding
under my bed"

If you've not been to my house, you wouldn't know this, but that is actually a pretty accurate rendition of Jack's bunk bed and dresser. See the cat under the bed? Jack laughed when he drew that.

Next page:

"1 day my cat
gose [goes] out the door!"

Jack initially left off the ending punctuation. I asked him if he wanted to add a period. Apparently it is exclamation point worthy.

I think the next page might be my favorite because of the drawing. Again, Jack laughed when he drew it.

"he went
Back in"

Apparently not exclamation point worthy.

Then Jack finally made use of the piles of foam pieces and glue and googly eyes that were provided with the kit. He made this picture, then pointed at the dog and said, "It looks like her!" (Or maybe "him." His pronouns aren't the best.)

The circles with the googly eyes are "shooters."
I don't know, don't ask me.
I just hope our real dog isn't armed.

The last page is a little confusing. Jack did finish using the entire bag of googly eyes because, you know, googly eyes are cool. I think he might have said that he (the tall figure) and the dog (that's his/her leg to the right there) were playing a target game.

Jack carefully drew a dog next to the hand and then scribbled it out before drawing the dog leg. He said, "The dog is disappearing then I had to buy him again."

Every book needs an author photo, so...

And then, because he hadn't melted my heart enough, and impressed me by working straight through for a good half hour or so, he wrote me a note.

"Dear Mom I ♥ you ♥ me

Remember a couple days ago when I said that you and your support solidify me? This turns me back into goo. But the good kind of goo.


The quote that made up the title for my last post came from the Simpsons episode when Lisa gets high from drinking Duff Gardens river water.


  1. Holy crap? He's in Kindergarten right? My 3rd grader (who also eats pushpins) can't do that. Totally get the "when he's into it, he's into it thing." Wow, I think I would read that every day. And my kid can do that when he has 1:1 instruction I guess, just not when he is thrown in a classroom and left to drown. And OMG Jack looks so much like Sam. That is all.

  2. Wow, that's awesome! I love the name of the cat.

  3. Apparently, I hadn't fully prepared myself for the cuteness because I'm a little gooey myself. He has a wonderful imagination.

    I love one on one time to work on projects.

  4. That is really awesome!! Thanks for sharing it!

  5. This is the second time today Stimeyland has made me cry!

  6. Not that you need more projects, but maybe there's an idea (or four) for another book here:

  7. That is so cute and definitely something worthwhile holding onto for when he's older.

  8. When the book isn't occupying his rapt attention any longer, wrap that book in some acid free tissue paper (make sure to put sheets inbetween the pages too) and save it. That's definitely a keeper.

  9. Awww. Reading this makes me miss teaching 1st graders. Writer's Workshop was my favorite time of the day. I love reading kid writing. Thanks for sharing it.

  10. I too have an unfinished "make your own book" that Jonathan wants to work on. Too bad I'm thinking of it now while he's asleep... Why do we always forget about the projects until we can't do them?


  11. Oh, man. The cute! It kills me dead! Your Jack and my Peanut remind me of each other - something about the eyes, I think, or the sheer kindergarten-ey awesomeness. :)

  12. ok, that is pretty damned cute!

  13. HAHAHA!!! It looks like the cat's head is shut in the door!!!! Is it wrong that I find that hilarious?

    And dogs ARE armed, at least mine are. They have dreadful chemical weapons farters. Yeesh.

  14. The drawing of the cat going in made me laugh too.

  15. omg--that's so, so cute! I need to get one of those for ethan!

  16. a) I'm impressed. Jack has better drawing and handwriting skills than my second grader.

    b) The cat going in the door and the cat hiding under the bed made me laugh too.

    c) I knew where that quote was from and I had a cute comment I was going to leave you but I forgot because I am awesome.

    d) You looked very pretty and happy enjoying the cute.

  17. That book is genius! Captivating text and charming illustrations by humorous writer. Hey you might not show that to his team or they may reconsider the hours of services you lobbied for this week! Can't wait for his sequel!

  18. That book is AWESOME.

    I remember when he didn't know his letters ... and then when he first started writing, all in a burst ... and now, he's an author!

    Nice work, Jack!


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