Last night I had the joy of babysitting my nephews so my brother could celebrate his birthday. My youngest nephew (now 5) and I were drawing. He was drawing and I was writing a story for him at his request. He had already drawn me a Medieval castle in purple (my favourite colour as he pointed out, then looking at what I was wearing said it was pink – his favourite colour is pink – we have so much in common! Probably because my inner child is around about 5, I remember it as a fun age to be – and I have just spent the year teaching his age group too.) The castle also had heart shaped windows on one turret (bless!) I loved it and it was put on my fridge proudly as soon as I got in despite Mr G trying to serve up hot supper in the kitchen!
He had asked me to write him a story and draw superman – he went to fetch a book (thinking I may have no idea of this superman – it was my era!) He couldn’t find it, so solved the problem by choosing another book, he requested SquareBob Spongepants (a particular favourite of mine!) and handed me that book.
I wrote a story about Taekwondo (which is a favourite past time of both boys, the eldest has just come back from winning Gold and Silver in a tournament in Edinburgh, Scotland!) SpongeBob came to Taekwondo and was partnered with my nephew – he didn’t want to fight his favourite cartoon, but his dad cheered him on, He beat SpongeBob and won the Gold Medal (every younger brother that has just watched his older brother win wants one. Later that evening he pretended all of his brother’s football trophies were his – I went along with it! It was no small wonder he tried to extend his bed-time, he must have thought Aunty is really stupid, she didn’t even ask why I kept my awards in my brother’s room, I can get to stay up late easily!)
He loved the story – not my best work of fiction but I only had 1 side of A4 and my illustration of SBSP (SpongeBob) was very big (and accurate – I was quite impressed with myself) …
Later on (in the dark) he had me copy his Match Attax football card – I did quite well. By then I was looking after both of them.
Part way through our creative time drawing he turned to me and asked;
‘What is your biggest wish? What did you always want to be?’
I thought for a moment and then tried to explain that my biggest wish is to have my books published. He asked what I meant and I explained about writing books using his SBSP book – he then understood. Thought for a moment, turned back to his desk and within seconds turned around and asked – what else did you used to wish to be?
I told him I always wanted to be a ballerina, a ballet dancer.
He smiled, seemed okay with that and turned back to his paper. I carried on with my story and was quite looking forward to having a ballerina to put on my fridge. (He’s 5 remember…)
A while later ‘Look!’ he proudly holds up a picture of scribble. (Don’t all 5 year olds love to regress, it is almost like they have keyed into the fact that they have had the best part of childhood already and want to put the brakes on!)
‘Ohhhh, tell me what it is.’
He smiles at me and then looks at the paper to decide. ‘It’s a Tornado’… as we don’t have them in this country I was quite impressed by this analogy – of course he is CARTOON mad and they happen in those every time a character leaves the scene!
I told my brother he could add the short notice babysitting to the Birthday presents – but really I did it for myself! These boys are brilliant – despite both playing up about bedtime. I just hope they stay treasures as they walk through their lives.
What do you wish for?
I smiled – thinking to myself that I had never considered how difficult the concept of AUTHOR is to draw.