Monday, November 30, 2015

Piano update

Biscuit and I got to his piano lesson about 10 minutes early today, only to find his teacher's driveway empty. We usually arrive a few minutes after his teacher gets home from his "real" job of being a music teacher at an elementary school.

But it was rainy and messy all day today, so I allowed for extra travel time.

Turns out, it wasn't needed. Biscuit's teacher called about 4:56 p.m. to say that he was going to be late getting home for Biscuit's 5 p.m. lesson.

So Biscuit and I hung out in the car and talked for a little bit.

He didn't get to practice much this week because he had his last lesson last Monday, then my parents came into town Wednesday. My brother and his family came in on Saturday. And by Sunday, we were all exhausted. So when I told him to practice Sunday evening, he struggled.

I remember when I was taking lessons as a kid, and I would just get so frustrated because I couldn't do what I knew I needed to do. Knowing what's supposed to be happening and not being able to do it is beyond frustrating. My Daddy plays guitar and sings, but he can't read music. So he and Mama couldn't understand just how hard it was for me sometimes.

And because I believe everything happens for a reason, I think that everything I experienced when I was taking lessons will be beneficial to Biscuit. Including understanding when he gets all torqued out over not being able to play a song the way he wants to.

When he practiced Sunday evening, he got so mad at himself. I mean, he was playing "Frosty the Snowman." How could you possibly get mad when you're playing "Frosty the Snowman"?

He was doing such a good job until he got to the part about "There must have been some magic in that old silk hat they found." The notes for that part are pretty different from the rest of the song, and he just couldn't get it locked in.

So when he and I were talking in the car, I told him, "Listen. You need to just tell him that you didn't get to practice much this week. He'll understand that."

And when we got inside, he did just that. And luckily, without any prompting, his teacher said, "You know what? You don't have any control over things like that. Holidays are busy, especially if you have family at your house."

"I did play for them," Biscuit said.

"That's great!" his teacher said. "I know they loved it, too."

"I think they did," Biscuit said.

Then Biscuit played a song he's been working on for a while. He'll be playing it for two competitions after the first of the year.

After he finished, his teacher went back and picked a few nits.

"I hope you don't think I'm being mean when I tell you these things," his teacher said. "I just want you to get better and better."

Then the teacher looked to me for backup.

I said, "You know when you're working on your writing at school and your teacher points out that you wrote a letter backwards? This is just like that. By pointing out parts that need work, it'll just get better and better."

Biscuit seemed to relax a little bit. I worry sometimes about how intense he can get about things. And how hard he can be on himself.

As Biscuit was packing up his books, his teacher whispered to me, "There are some of my students that I wouldn't be that picky with, but he is just so musical. He has music in him. I truly believe that he's going to do something in music, whether it's vocational or avocational, I believe it."

I tend to be skeptical when people seem too complimentary, but I can see it, too. And I'm really glad we found a teacher who can recognize Biscuit's talent and help him be as good as he can be.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Delayed Thanksgiving

With everybody's schedule, it's just not possible for my family to gather on Thanksgiving Day. So we figured out a few years ago that the Saturday after Thanksgiving was the best day for us to get together.

We had a really nice visit and ate too much good food - ham, mashed potatoes, green beans, sweet potato casserole, dressing with giblet gravy and more! I love family gatherings, and not just for the good eats!

After everybody left, I got the kitchen cleaned up, then Jeff, Biscuit and I decided to relax in the living room. I didn't get to spend much time with Biscuit today, so he immediately came over and climbed up into my rocking chair with me.

And that's when the giggling started.

Biscuit makes this noise with his mouth that sounds almost like when you roll your R's in Spanish. I can't make the noise, so Biscuit decided that today was the time for me to learn.

He said, "Put your against your gum and move it against the other thing."

"What?!" I asked him.

"Watch, Mom," he said. But I still didn't get it.

I didn't do a good job as a student, and he thought it was quite funny!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Out of the mouth of my babe

Today is Thanksgiving, and I'm thankful that my son amuses me on a daily basis. Here are a few things he's said recently:

Using his math: Biscuit has discovered the scales in the produce department at the grocery store, and he wants to weigh every single thing I get, even if it's something that's priced per item.

I figure it's math, so I take the time and let him do it.

Yesterday, I needed a couple of Red Delicious apples, and they were on sale for 99 cents a pound. I got two pretty big apples, and of course, Biscuit needed to see how much they weighed.

I walked over, and we looked at the scale together. 

"Okay, the needle is halfway between 1 and 2 pounds," I told him. "So how much do my apples weigh?"

"Oh, uh ..." Biscuit said, and he was stumped.

"It's HALFway between the numbers," I said.

"Oh!" Biscuit said, and there might as well have been a light bulb over his head. "That's 1 and a half pounds of apples."

"Good job," I said. "Now let's figure out how much they cost."

I rounded up and told him that they were $1 a pound.

"If the apples are $1 for each pound, and we have one pound and half of another pound, how much would that be?" I asked him.

"It would be $1 and ..." then Biscuit just sort of looked at me.

"What's half of one dollar?" I asked. "And remember that a dollar is the same as 100 cents. So what's half of 100 cents?"

"50 cents," he said.

"Right." I said. "So our apples are $1 and 50 cents."

We took a couple of steps away, and I said, "By the way, THAT is why you need to learn math. For the grocery store."

I happen to glance up, and saw a man standing near us laughing. I caught his eye, and he just nodded his head and went on about his shopping.

We'll take lessons wherever we can find them!

A big kurfuffle: Biscuit stages all kinds of intricate battles with his action figures and little Lego men. One evening when we were all three in the living room, and I said, "What's going on?"

"Okay, guys," he said. "Here's the deal. There's an odd conniption going on at the base."

Before he could go any further, Jeff asked, "Wait, what is a conniption?"

Biscuit thought for a second and said, "I don't really know. I just heard that word and just kind of made it up for what we're playing."

Good behavior: I know lots of people are upset that stores are open today, but we don't have our Thanksgiving until Saturday. So it's kind of like a regular day for us.

Mama and I went shopping, and Jeff, Daddy and Biscuit decided they would go with us. We sort of dreaded it because they tend to get impatient and are ready to go before us, but we also knew that it would be time spent together, which is always good.

Daddy and Jeff went to the men's department, and Biscuit stayed with Mama and me.

I'm not sure what happened, but Mama called down Biscuit. I heard her say something about how if he wanted to stay with us, he couldn't be doing whatever it was he was doing.

Then Biscuit said, "I'm sorry, Grandmama. I've only been in this store once before, and I just didn't know the expectations."

I could see Mama trying not to laugh.

"The expectations are just for you to be good and patient so your Mom and I can shop some," Mama said.

"Got it," Biscuit said. And he was really good the rest of the time.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Biscuit is back to normal

This has been quite a rough week. Remember how I said Biscuit wasn't feeling well last Sunday, and that I hoped he felt better soon? Well, that didn't happen.

By the time we got home Sunday evening, Biscuit's temperature was 103, and you could tell by looking at him that he was a sick little boy.

I wrote emails to his teacher and after-school leader to let them know he wouldn't be at school Monday. I texted his piano teacher to say we couldn't attend his lesson. Jeff and I split the day. I worked the first half at work and the second half at home. And Jeff did just the opposite.

Our thought was that Biscuit's fever would wind down Monday evening, and he would head back to school Tuesday. But when he got up Tuesday morning, he was still feverish.

Biscuit will occasionally run a fever out of nowhere, often with no other symptoms. I asked his doctor about it, and his doctor said that's just his body's way of fighting off bad stuff. He also said we should be glad that Biscuit's immune system is strong enough to fight off illnesses like that.

Biscuit's doctor has always said that three days is the magic number. If his fever goes away within three days, he's fine. If it lasts longer than that, we should bring him in to his office.

So Tuesday morning, we called the doctor. 

We went in that afternoon and while we were waiting on the doctor, poor Biscuit couldn't even sit up. He was lying face-down on the exam table. He was wearing a hand-me-down T-shirt with "Angry Birds" as "Star Wars" characters. When the doctor came in, I helped roll Biscuit over. Biscuit started to sit up, but the doctor told him to stay right where he was.

"Hey," the doctor said. "I like that shirt."

Biscuit had his eyes closed until the doctor made the comment about his shirt.

Biscuit opened his eyes long enough to say, "I don't like 'Angry Birds,' but I do like 'Star Wars.'"

Turns out, Biscuit had an adenovirus. I had never even heard of such a thing, but it's basically an all-encompassing virus that affects dang-near everything in him.

He had respiratory issues, sinus problems, throwing up, bathroom issues, headache, body aches, sore throat and more. The only thing that didn't hurt him was his ears. They were perfectly clear.

The doctor wrote him an excuse for Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. And he said that if Biscuit's fever wasn't gone Wednesday night / Thursday morning, we should bring him back.

I woke up Wednesday morning with the room flying around. I have occasional bouts of vertigo, and I certainly didn't feel like getting up and going to work. But the week before Thanksgiving is always rough at work. We have early deadlines, and I just couldn't miss any days of work last week.

Wednesday night, Jeff and I were lying in bed, and just out of nowhere, the vertigo kicked up a notch. It was worst the I had ever had. I was lying perfectly still, but it felt like I was rolling all over the bed. I broke out in a sweat and immediately started feeling nauseated. It was awful.

We were already worried about Biscuit, then Jeff had to worry about me, too.

I still wasn't feeling well Thursday morning. But Biscuit woke up on his own and walked downstairs. I could tell by the look on his face that he was feeling better.

He brought me the thermometer, and I checked his temperature - 98.3 in one ear, and just for good measure, 97.5 in the other ear.

"How are you feeling?" I asked him.

"I'm feeling very, very better, Mom," Biscuit said.

Finally, by Friday evening, we were all doing a lot better.

Jeff had all-day work days both days this weekend, so Biscuit and I just camped out at home. We caught him up on his homework and piano. I did a bunch of cleaning stuff that I wasn't able to do this past week.

We're hoping this coming week will be a lot better for us.

Monday, November 16, 2015

A busy weekend

We went to my parents' house this past weekend. Since the time around Biscuit's birthday party is always hectic, I like going to their house the weekend after. They get more time to celebrate with him, and he enjoys that it extends his special day.

We had a good visit, and Biscuit had a good time playing with everybody.

I think he might have played too hard because by the time we left, he wasn't feeling well.

I figured he was just tired because he went to sleep within 10 minutes of leaving my parents' house. But when we got home, I took his temperature, and it was 103. Poor little man was feeling awful.

We kept him home from school today, and when he went to bed about an hour ago, he seemed to be feeling a little bit better. His medicine should be wearing off pretty soon, so I'll check him again before I go to bed to see if he needs another dose.

But hopefully, he'll feel better tomorrow.

Here's some of the fun he had over the weekend:

Brownie and ice cream.

Making a wish.

Big breath to blow out the candle ... and I missed him
actually blowing it out because his big breath tickled me.

And lots of presents.

Mama spent 98 cents on these Halloween balloons with LED
lights inside. We inflated them, turned out all the lights and batted
them around the living room. It was Mama, Daddy, Jeff, Griffin,
me, my brother, my sister-in-law, one of my nieces and my
nephew. And can you believe it? Nothing got broken!

And then it was time to play in the leaves.

This is my nephew. He's 11, and he's the tallest kid in his class. And
it was quite impressive to watch his 5-foot-6 frame dive into these leaves.

Going ... going ...

Gone! He's in there. Can you see him?

My nephew with my brother and Biscuit as the cherry on top.

And then he was tired.

I hope my baby feels better tomorrow.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

"Rising Together"

Now that Biscuit is in school, Jeff and I don't get to take our annual anniversary trip anymore. So I ended up with an extra week of vacation time and no good reason to take it. I decided I would just pick a random week and enjoy some time off to myself.

When I looked at the calendar, I realized that the week before Biscuit's birthday would be a good week to take some days.

It was wonderful. And I only checked my work email once. I was very proud of myself for that.

I made plans for Biscuit's birthday party. I had lunch with a friend. I did a little Christmas shopping. I rearranged my chest freezer and my regular freezer. I also rearranged some other closets and areas of the house. I did things that nobody will notice but me. But they were things that make my everyday life easier and more organized.

I also planned to use some of my time off to write some blog posts I've been meaning to write. But did that happen? No.

So here's one from a while back.

The week of my surgery, there was a big folk music festival in town. I had edited so many stories about that thing that I couldn't decide whether I wanted to go or whether I was already sick of it before it had even happened. I read so much about the artists and events that I felt like I had already seen it.

As part of the event, this sculptor came to town and created a ladder sculpture called "Rising Together."

About two weeks before the festival, the sculptor asked for ladder donations from anyone who wanted to participate. They could be old or new, decorated or plain. My boss (and luckily also my friend) suggested that she and I decorate one themed for the paper. She asked one of our maintenance guys, and he actually had an old ladder he was willing to give us.

We covered it with sections of the paper, comics, business cards, PR materials, even branded drink koozies. And we had a great time doing it.

After all, who gets to spend a part of their workday doing what we all did in kindergarten - cutting and gluing and coloring?

Here's our ladder partially done. We painted
a layer of watered-down glue over top of
everything to smooth the edges and protect
our creation from the elements.

My boss and I wanted to document our work, so we got
one of our staff photographers to take a picture of us.

When we finished, the maintenance guy who got the ladder for us also offered to deliver our ladder to the drop-off site. He said he wasn't creative like us but that he could drive a truck and do some lifting.

I went home that evening and told Biscuit about the ladder my boss and I created. He got a funny look on his face.

"What's wrong?" I asked him.

"Mom!" he said, getting excited. "You'll never guess what."

"What?" I asked.

"We made a ladder today at school, too!" he said.

The school's ladder was painted white, then all the kids were allowed to add their fingerprints in red or blue paint. (The school's colors are red, white and blue).

So we traded details about how our ladders looked, and I told him that once the sculpture was done, we'd go see it and hunt for our ladders.

Well, my appendix decided otherwise. I didn't get to go to the festival or see the sculpture.

But remember that boss and friend I mentioned? She DID get to see it, and she was kind enough to take pictures for Biscuit and me. She got an overall picture, then she made sure to get close-ups of each of our ladders.

Check out our ladders:

The sculpture looked kind of like an igloo to me. It had a dome shape, and you could walk into it.

This is the ladder my boss and I decorated. It's hard to see the details because
it was overhead, and the sky is bright behind it. It was quite a hodge-podge, though.

Biscuit's ladder was on the outside. I think it showed up well because it had a white background.
Biscuit said his fingerprint was blue, but of course he couldn't remember where he put it.

I'm not much of an art person. I can't really explain the technical aspects of this sculpture. But I can say that I did get the symbolism of having these ladders donated from people all over the city piled up together. It did fit its name.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Happy birthday, Biscuit!

Today is my baby boy's 7th birthday. And as I tell him, he can be 40 years old, and he'll still be my baby!

Biscuit is consumed with "Star Wars" right now (more about that to come). So his party was themed around his latest interest.

This is the first time that Biscuit has really been interested in the food and games and other parts of the party. Previously, he told me the theme and wanted me to take it from there. But it was really fun doing the research and then being able to talk to him about what I had found and getting his opinions about what he did and didn't want.

He decided that since he and Jeff have only watched the original three movies, he wanted his party to be based on those movies, not the new one. Well, that was quite a challenge. All the party stores and websites have supplies based on the movie that's coming out this December. But after a lot of searching, I finally found what he wanted.

When I asked Biscuit who he wanted to invite, I told him that our dining room table has six chairs, and we could put chairs from the kitchen table on either end.

"That's eight kids counting you," I told him, and he set to work narrowing down his invitation list.

Everybody who knows me knows that I love all this party stuff. I love making the invitations, and I always print them out and mail them. And Biscuit always gets a homemade cake or cupcakes in whatever flavor he wants.

Well, this year, I decided that I would make it a little easier on myself.

I made the invitations, but I decided to email them. It felt weird, but it saved time and money.

Address and phone number blurred out, of course.

And I decided to ... gasp! ... BUY a cake. I know, I know.

I had ordered a personalized sugar sheet that went along with the theme. They're made with a special computer printer that uses food-grade ink. The sheet that it prints is completely edible.

Again, I saved time and money. If I had ordered the cake pre-made, it would've cost about $40. But by getting a plain cake and the sugar sheet, it was about $25.

I was quite pleased with myself until I started looking at the available space on the top of the cake and then the sugar sheet. The sugar sheet was a quarter sheet cake size and the cake was a quarter sheet cake. But it turns out that the measurements of the cake were a little bit smaller than a true quarter sheet cake. Add to that the fact that the sugar sheet was created to cover the entire top of the cake, and the cake I bought had a pretty wide border of icing around the top.

Time and money saved. Stress ... not so much!

I finally took a small offset spatula and squished the icing toward the edge of the cake as much as I could without messing it up too badly. Then I got out a ruler and my sharpest paring knife and took to hacking apart the sugar sheet.

I was all worried about it, but when I showed it to Biscuit, he said, "Whoa! Mom! That is SO cool!" And he never even noticed that R2-D2 wasn't even on there. As long as Luke Skywalker was on there, the boy was happy.

Sorry about the shadow. I was in a hurry and didn't look
at my picture before I moved on to something else.

Now, when you start searching something like "Star Wars" birthday party, you get WAY more information that you could ever need. You wouldn't believe how many blog posts, websites and posts on various social media offer suggestions for "the perfect party!"

I took it one topic at a time. The first time, Biscuit and I looked at decorations. Our next trip online, we figured out games to play. The third trip was the most fun for me. We checked out food!

All the food had theme-specific names. And let me say that I've never actually seen the original three movies. So I was taking Jeff and Biscuit's word for a lot of this stuff.

We had Edible Ewoks, aka gummy bears, these bear-looking little critters in the 
movie, and Han Rollos, a take on the character Han Solo (played by Harrison Ford).

We also had light saber pretzel rods. The good guys have blue and green light
sabers. Darth Vader has red. So Biscuit said I could only make blue and green.

There are some animals called Taun Tons that I think are
shaped like T-Rex dinosaurs (Short little arms in the front and
long tails. They run on their back legs). Anyway, I made these
appetizers with wonton wrappers with spiced meat and cheese
that I've been making for years, but I had no idea I was
making "Star Wars" themed appetizers all these years.

Making his wish.

Blowing out the candle.

We borrowed a cooler that looks like R2-D2. It
held Jedi Juice (kid-sized bottles of apple juice). 

This Darth Vader is a pinata. Biscuit thought it was
appropriate that they would be ripping open the bad guy.

And Biscuit decided we needed to do goodie
bags. He picked out what we included.

We included a Play Pack, which has a coloring book, crayons and stickers, 
"Star Wars" fruit snacks and homemade chocolate chip cookies that we 
called "Wookie Cookies." I was alerted by a friend that "Wookie" is not the correct 
spelling for Chewbacca's people. It was supposed to be "Wookiee." But I blame 
Jeff. He knows everything about those movies, and he was my proof
reader. This shows he was not on his copyediting game that day!

There were a bunch of gifts, of course, including three new Nerf guns. There were lots of helium balloons scattered around the living room, and after everyone left, Jeff, Biscuit and I each got a gun and started target practice. I guess it could've ended badly, but it was a lot of fun, and it felt like we were getting away with something.

As a matter of fact, when my Mama called Biscuit, I said to him, "Don't tell Grandmama what we were doing. We'll get in trouble."

I knew exactly what would happen.

Biscuit walked around the corner and said in a low voice, "Um, Grandmama ... Mom and Dad and I are shooting Nerf guns at balloons in the living room."

"GRIFFIN!" I yelled. "You were not supposed to tell!"

He got a big kick out of that.

This was my favorite gift bag.

This morning, I put a candle in a peanut butter and jelly English muffin.

Biscuit said, "Mooom! How many times am I gonna have to blow out this candle?!"

But of course, when he talked to my Mama this evening, that was one of the first things he told her. "I've blown out my No. 7 candle four times so far, Grandmama."

I had some games planned for the kids, but I sort of lost control of the party. The sugared-up kids were feeding off each other, and pretty soon, I gave them light sabers and sent them to the yard.

The kids used "The Force" to keep balloons
in the air with their light sabers.

And a game of King of the Hill is required
by law at all boys' birthday parties.

It was a big day for Biscuit yesterday. He actually got in trouble a little bit at school today. His teacher said he agreed that he wasn't on his best behavior, but she said she wasn't too worried about it. She referred to it as "birthday-itis."

The school has a morning TV show, and they list all the birthday kids. So Biscuit was excited about that. I also took doughnuts for all the kids in his class. On birthdays, parents can bring in a special snack. The class sang "Happy Birthday" to Biscuit, and when he was recounting the story, he said, "And Mom, my teacher said I didn't even have to sing!"

He had a piano lesson after school, then we let him pick out the restaurant for dinner. And of course we saved some presents for the actual day.

Biscuit chose a Mexican restaurant, partly because he had seen them make a big fuss over other customers' birthdays in the past. And they didn't disappoint him tonight. The servers at put the big sombrero on him and gave him a free dessert. They sang to him in Spanish, which of course he loved. And our server offered him the first bite of the dessert then promptly smeared it on his nose.

Don't mind the demon eyes. I'll fix them later.

So Biscuit went to his best friend's birthday party on Saturday. He had his own party Sunday. They made a fuss over him at school today. His piano teacher played and sang a rousing version of "Happy Birthday," in which I think he used every note on the piano. And he finished up with a dinner he loved and more presents.

By Biscuit's account, it's been a great few days.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Cowboy tunes

When I was quite pregnant with Biscuit, my family went on a trip to the mountains so we could take my nieces and nephew to a small theme park that has a train with a steam-powered locomotive.

While we were there, we saw that as part of our admission, we could see a concert by Riders in the Sky, a quartet that sings cowboy music - not country music, but true Roger Rogers-type cowboy music.

Their motto is that they do everything ... The Cowboy Way. Then they strike this pose.

We found out a few weeks ago that the group was coming to a local theater to perform.

Jeff said, "Hey, didn't Biscuit like those guys?"

"Well, it felt like it," I told him.

He gave me an odd look and said, "What do you mean?"

"The last time we saw them, I was pregnant," I told him. "But when their music started, he started flipping and flopping in my belly."

We had a laugh about that then decided that we thought Biscuit would enjoy seeing them.

Biscuit asked me a month or so ago about me being pregnant. I told him what I thought was appropriate for his age. And since then, I've been able to share fun things with him, like telling him that when we heard the cowboy group for the first time, he seemed to enjoy it and started rolling around in there. He thought that was pretty funny.

And he enjoyed the show this time, too.

They're the group that play "Woody's Round Up" for the "Toy Story" movie, so they have a Woody doll right in the front. They have a fun stage with wooden fences, cacti and other props.

They guy who plays a big ol' stand-up bass wears a tie that looks like a cactus, in other words, a cact-tie.

The also have a fake camp fire right in the middle of the stage. See it? They light it up at the beginning of the show and stand around like they're getting warm. And you know they're done playing when they put out the fire.

After the show, we got Biscuit a CD, and he waited in line to have it autographed. And I can tell you that I've had to listen to way more cowboy music since then that I ever cared to hear!

The things we do for our kids!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Out of the mouth of my babe

A few things Biscuit has said recently:

Picking on the boy: "Dad, guess what I made?" Biscuit asked.

"What did you made?" Jeff asked, picking at Biscuit.

"Dad!" Biscuit said, exasperated. "I say 'made,' and you say, 'make.' It just makes more sense that way."

A new word: "Mom, I ate the majority of my beans," Biscuit said, "but I'm full now. Can I leave the rest?"

"What does 'majority' mean?" Jeff asked.

"It means 'more than half,' Dad" Biscuit said.

"How do you know that word?" Jeff asked.

"I learned it at school," Biscuit said. "We did a lesson about voting today. ... So ... I've eaten more than half. That's the majority."

"You ate enough," I said. "Go play."

Losing his religion: I did some reorganizing in Biscuit's room Sunday, and I cleaned out a few papers he had from the Sunday school class at Mama's church. I had made a little pile of papers on the footboard of Biscuit's bed.

Jeff walked into the room while I was working. "Can I help with anything?" he asked.

"Yes, you can throw away those papers," I said.

Jeff scooped up the papers and walked out.

It didn't occur to me to explain in specific details how to get rid of the papers. And that was my mistake. Jeff threw the papers in the small trashcan in the bathroom where Biscuit gets ready every single morning!

So of course, Biscuit walked in there Monday morning and saw the papers right on top.

"Dad! Dad!" Biscuit hollered. "Can you come in here ... right now?"

"What?" Jeff said.

"Dad, apparently, you don't have a problem with throwing away Jesus!" Biscuit said. And he was not happy.

"What do you mean?" Jeff asked.

"I worked really hard on this paper, and you just threw it away. And it's about Jesus. You just threw away Jesus."

Jeff picked up the paper and looked at it.

"First of all, this paper is about Paul," Jeff said, "and second of all, I thought it was just a maze."

Then Biscuit proceeded to walk Jeff through the steps of Paul's life, when he was blinded and when he was healed, the whole story.

I didn't get to hear the final outcome, so I'm not sure if Jeff was able to put the paper back in the trash or if he had to save it.

Needless to say, I had a conversation with Jeff this afternoon about how you go about getting rid of papers the boy has done.

"You take it to the big trashcans outside or you put it in the kitchen can underneath some other papers. We can't save them all, so I pick out the special ones," I told him. "But as far as he's concerned, we treasure them all!"