Monday morning as I walked into the living room Joellen said excitedly, "Mommy, can we get this thing that connects your DS to the television or a big computer? It brings the whole family together!" It is important to note here that we do not have a DS or any of the other popular gaming systems.
"But I think our family is already pretty close together, don't you?" I asked her.
"Yeah, but we could all play the game!"
Ahhh, commercialism at its best right in my very own living room. Obviously she was regurgitating the high points of a commercial I had just missed but her four-year-old senses were highly tuned to and specifically targeted by Madison Avenue.
Perhaps Lucy Van Pelt was right in 1965 when she said in A Charlie Brown Christmas, "Look, Charlie, let's face it. We all know that Christmas is a big commercial racket. It's run by a big eastern syndicate, you know."
No, he didn't know. At least Linus knew the real truth when he quoted Luke and told the real story of Christmas.
Thankfully that very night in that identical living room the exact same girl asked if she could have a nativity set off the mantel. I obliged and we played with the figurines on the coffee table.
After she set them up appropriately once, she then wanted to empty the stable and the entire scene. Why the empty scene? Because it had now become her stage and together we told the real Christmas story and used the figurines to act it out like a play.
Joellen told me, "The shepherds were watching their flocks by night. . . . you know flocks is another word for sheep?" Absolutely and I couldn't be more proud that my girl was regurgitating more than just commercialism.