Tonight Annika looked at me dreamily and sighed, "I want to fall in love."
Ah, we are entering a romantic phase. I suspect she has watched Shrek
a few too many times.
We took no movies with us to Berlin, thinking that there would be no time for such things in our busy days. And we were right. But the only problem with this utopian scenario was that Annika really needs
something to help her settle down sometimes. Something to lure her into sitting still and quiet for a nice long spell. Children are not built for non-stop stimulation. Reading will do the trick, and oh boy we read like crazy for the first two weeks or so. But when Norma offered to loan us Shrek for the remaining 10 days, I jumped at the offer, my sorely overused vocal cords barely able to eek out a "Thank You."
And the girls, mainly Annika, watched that movie. Repeatedly. Anni began memorizing lines, and throwing them back at me. So that one day when I asked Anni to sit down now
, she nodded her head at me and replied,
"As you command, your highness."
(I may have misquoted that slightly. I didn't watch the movie as many times as Annika. But I appreciated the sentiment.)
And whenever Annika began feeling a bit upset or stressed, she would shout, "I'm a donkey on the head!"
(Actually that line was, "I'm a donkey on the edge!" But I liked her version better.)
Even Frankie would pop into the bedroom where we had set up the computer to watch for a bit. She would lean her elbows back, crossing her ankles as she propped herself against the bed, in a chubby-thighed James Dean pose. Frankie's favorite part was when the dragon appeared, and she had little use for the rest of the film.
As with most movies, the music quickly became the most important part of the experience. So I've gotten the girls the soundtrack to listen to while we're in the car or splashing in the wading pool outside. Frankie's favorite song is "I'm on My Way"
from The Proclaimers
("More uh-huh!" she begs, and we always give in.) Annika's absolute favorite song is Rufus Wainwright's
version of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah."
Definitely a romantic phase.
(although I do suspect that it has more to do with the lovely tune and the song's relatively high Dora score