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Gotta Love Crossbows and Marshmallows

August 26, 2011

     As you have probably guessed by now, I am on vacation this week.  I think all vacations should last two weeks. The first week is there just to finally unwind.  The second week is when you really begin to relax.  Well, I think I’m relaxed now and today we go home.  No two weeks for me.  One of the signs that I am finally relaxing is my willingness to share a summer re-run with you.  So as I relax for the two remaining hours of my vacation, enjoy one of my favorites. 

     Boys and weapons go hand in hand.  When my first son was born, almost 21 years ago, I had decided to avoid violence.  I was not going to let my son play with weapons.  To be honest, I have no idea what my reasoning was at the time.  I remember being shocked when he would go around making a shooting sound with his finger, Lincoln log or any other item he had in his hand, when I was sure he had never been exposed to this concept.  It was then that I began to seriously wonder if boys and weapons are a genetic thing.

     I once had a friend tell me that when she didn’t give her son a gun, he chewed his toast into a gun shape and proceeded to fire it at will.  What is it about boys and weapons?  This Mama will not even try to sound philosophical and explain why. 

     Needless to say, I changed my view point and now we have guns.  We not only have guns, we have an entire arsenal of toy weapons, air soft guns, paintball guns and now we also now have 18th century muskets for re-enacting.  A perfect day for my boys involves camouflage and some type of weapon.

     The other day my adult brother came by and I was amazed at how his eyes grew and the drool began when he described a marshmallow crossbow he had seen.  I sat and listened as he and my son conjured up all types of ways to use that crossbow.  I will say that flaming marshmallows were involved.

     Mamas tend to enjoy the occasional tea party, dress up session and a good story time.  But these are not the activities our sons are looking to participate in.  Although my sons enjoy the snacks available at a tea party, they much prefer something that involves dirt, camouflage and superior fire power. 

     Dear Mama, the moment that precious bundle in the blue blanket arrives; he is beginning his journey to manhood.  We are to love them, guide them and train them, but we are also supposed to allow them to become men.  This happens daily in small ways at first, but before you know it, they are heading into manhood a leap at a time.  Believe it or not, a day in the woods with play weapons is part of their journey to manhood.

     So today give your little fellow that old cardboard wrapping paper roll.  Let him fence with his brother as you pull out an old Erroll Flynn pirate movie; or a wooden pistol is a treasure to have as they gallop through the house shouting, “High Ho Silver, Away!”  It’s time for some good old fashioned warfare; if we Mamas understand it or not.

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