this week with bb and the boys

We are on a crash schedule this week, leading up to Youngest's Coming of Age ceremony.
Outfits must be prepped (suits, shirts, dresses), speeches must be written (we speak to him, he speaks to the entire congregation and extended family) and food must be bought (he has requested hot dogs and hamburgers).
He and I need haircuts (Tuesday and Friday) and I need to paint my toenails.
K must recover from a back injury (sustained Saturday morning) and finish laying some stones in the backyard.
Middle needs to mow the lawn and help me decipher his schedule of review sessions and end-of-the-year exams.
I need to make a large sign to direct guests to the correct parking lot at church (COA PARTY THIS WAY) and figure out side dishes (and not forget the veggie burgers).

Friday night, 23 kids will hear their parents speak to them in the Children's Chapel and move into another wing for a shindig. Committees of parents have been working for months on a catered, dj'd soiree. (K and I are in charge of cleanup.)
Saturday morning, K will pick up a special fruit treat while Youngest and I are at rehearsal at church.
Then, on Sunday morning, we will return to church, meet up with grandmothers and godparents and hear Youngest's Credo. Finally, we'll head back to our house for the aforementioned dogs and burgers. (I almost forgot the ice cream cake.)

This is our last child to Come of Age - and we are very much looking forward to hearing what he has thought about this year. He's a terrific kid, our Youngest, and a very deep thinker.
While some kids speak, in their Credos, about their indecision with regard to their spirituality, I have a feeling that Youngest has very definite thoughts about his religious life. And while we were only required to hand a sealed letter conveying our feelings to him when Oldest came of age, we wrote a very witty speech for Middle which incorporated many of his favorite song lyrics from that time, which pretty much screwed us as Youngest is hoping for something as entertaining.
Unfortunately for him, I don't have as lighthearted a sentiment for Youngest...though we are still writing.
We have three minutes to tell him what we are feeling about him right now, what we hope for his future and what he's taught us in the past. It's not going to be easy, and it may not be so witty.
I keep teasing him that we are going to do an interpretive dance, or some sleight of hand to commemorate the day as embarrassingly as possible.
But the truth is, we will probably speak from our hearts.

I'm looking forward to it being over.


jenny said…
while it sounds wonderful, i get weepy just thinking about what you (or me, if i were in your place) might say. Three minutes of sheer sobbing, weepy hell, I say.

And with that...

wishing you well.
Eleanor said…
It's an important time for the Blackbird family! Youngest Blackbird flapping his newly-formed wings...happy flying, happy flying!
KPB said…
I'm only interested if that interpretive dance features you looking fierce, the use of jazz hands and nude body stokings.
Miz S said…
We did the COA thing. It was very moving. And stressful. And a lot of work.

Did I mention stressful?
Anonymous said…
Having a Coming of Age ceremony and celebration sounds so much nicer than having to go through Confirmation. COA makes more sense at that age too. While it sounds like a great deal of effort and preparation is involved--from the profound (your heartfelt speeches) to the mundane (don't forget that ice cream cake!), it sure does sound like a lovely and meaningful milestone to share with your Youngest.

Anonymous said…
I love the idea of this ceremony. It's such an important step for Youngest, but also for you and K.

Have you thought about a rap for your speech?

I kid.

Maybe you could say the whole thing in pig Latin? :-)
Jennifer said…
Sounds like you're gonna be really busy!

It would be very difficult for me to write to each child when they would expect something like the other, but they're just so different! And while I love them equally, I feel differently towards each.
Amy A. said…
What a special day. I'm sure you will all do well. You'll just have to focus on not crying through your words. :)
Dani said…
I was HOPING you'd blog about this! :)

I just got done with Youngest's Communion and Oldest's Confirmation (a mere 9 days apart from one another) and yet I'm still fascinated by your COA ceremony. The parental involvement alone is something to envy. During Oldest's Confirmation, dh and I didn't even get to sit near him. It was just him and his sponsor all the way up to, and including, him going to the alter to be Confirmed. Getting to pick such heartfelt words to fill up a whole three minutes in which Youngest will actually be LISTENING to you is a gift. I know you just want this to be over at this point, but be sure to make the most of the journey there. (Like I actually need to tell you that...)

Congratulations and good luck to all of you. xoxo
It sounds so much better/meaningful than Confirmation-Because Your Parents Said So. I made the first one get Confirmed. Let the second one choose not to.
I would probably cry.
Don't forget the Veggie Burgers
Mary said…
I have to agree with others and say that the COA ceremony sounds so much more meaningful and intimate than confirmation (that is not to be disrespectful to confirmtation either just how I feel).

Speaking from the heart? By the sounds of Youngest he will totally get that.
Anonymous said…
Wishing you all the very best of luck for Sunday's COA. You have brought me to tears on many occassions with your heart felt words here at say la vee. Whatever you write will be understood and cherished by all in attendance.

And bb? Don't forget the GIN.

TheOneTrueSue said…
I'd never heard of a COA ceremony before (because I live under a rock). What a beautiful idea.

I'm sure it can't be easy to write something that is supposed to sort of SUM UP your feelings about Youngest. What an impossible task.
alice c said…
Although it is Youngest's special day I hope that you and K will take a moment to appreciate what you have achieved and congratulate yourselves.
Carol said…
I'm so impressed with all the effort you are putting into this...we need to get more active in our Unitarian church - it's the only thing that will keep me sane in this religious dredge of a town. (LOVE the scenery and lifestyle - HATE the politics)

Keep us posted afterwards...
Badger said…
Yay, Youngest! I swear, it seems like Middle JUST did this.
Anonymous said…
This is so fascinating. Me too I had never heard of the CoA and it sounds really like a nice ceremony with the parents/child speech and all.
Obviously all these things require a LOT of prep but it sounds so nice.
I wish I could be there and be part of it...
You can ONLY speak from your heart.
Carol said…
The COA ceremony sounds lovely. For a moment I was afraid it might be like one my older son attended when he was 13 or so. His friend's ceremony was outdoors and began with a ritual drumming circle and ended with his "rebirthing"--achieved by crawling through a faux birth canal created by the legs of the standing guests. I don't think you could create a more embarrassing situation, even if you rapped your comments.
Anonymous said…
Good luck--I like the interpretive dance idea. That's fodder for much entertainment and embarrassment.
Paula said…
You all will be wonderful...