And then came the dinosaurs. Most likely as I was killing time with my toddler one day (remember the days when you tried to kill time every day because you had nothing to do but entertain one toddler?) I took him to a toy store where there were racks of little plastic animals. (Papo is the best brand but Schleich is really good too.) He caught sight of a carnivorous dinosaur. WHAT. IS. THAT?!?!? his little face seemed to say - mean, meat-eating predators with scales and claws and as big as a building? Bring it on!! Very soon dinosaurs were all he could talk about. He collected them with much begging, pleading, earning, gifting, bribing - anything to get more. He knew all of their names. He knew what period of the Mesozoic Era they came from. And this was as a three year old. PASSION.
Troy and I used to think his forceful love was limited to dinosaurs and perhaps a few other carnivores and reptiles, but around them time he started kindergarten he was introduced to a little cartoon character by the name of Ben 10. New obsession. Ben 10 toys. Shows. Pajamas. Halloween costumes. Birthday themes.
Here's little Stomper as a kindergartner going trick-or-treating in his Ben 10 outfit:
And guess what. That big black thing on his wrist, aka The Omnitrix (don't ask), is still in his possession and he still plays with it. Regularly! And he wore that costume as pajamas until 3rd grade.
That was just the beginning. What turns out to be the case is that Stomper loves stuff. Pokemon. Marvel super heroes. The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings. Lego series like Ninjago. Making stop-motion movies. Godzilla. Harry Potter. He just throws himself into loving a thing with all the energy in his heart. It used to put me in a bit of a panic - he'd show a new passion for something and suddenly have just an aching desire to envelop himself in that thing. He'd want the action figures, or the costume, or the...whatever, he just wanted to make that thing as real in his life as he could. And I would feel his desires and want to fill those wishes - uh, okay okay, how are we going to do this? I'll start looking online for a costume or maybe we can make a figure out of clay! Or I'd set up some reward system for him to earn the thing he was so desperately wanting. And then....he'd get over it in a day or two and be thinking about something else instead. An old thing, a new thing, either way. So I've learned to just sit back a bit and let him work out for himself what's really worth spending energy on.
I have to admit that with the entrance of persons such as Captain America, Iron Man and Spiderman, I wasn't sure he'd ever go back to dinosaurs. He's returned to his love of Ben 10 a few times - I think his 8th birthday was Ben 10 in theme, let me check...
Yep there he is. Same costume and everything:
And since we just found the whole Ben 10 series on DVD at a Rummage Sale along with a NEW Omnitrix (don't ask) he's loving it all again. Anyway, my point is that he has returned time and again to several of these passions, but with all the superheroes and cartoon characters, I was afraid that dinosaurs were a thing of the past. Those seemed to be the thing he loved the most thoroughly and for the longest. I was a little sad thinking that he was only excited about fictional loud cartoony things. (Okay, Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter are both barely fiction in my mind, but still...) and then last week he went all nuts over dinosaurs again. The last time we were in St. George he even brought a large collection with him and spent a great deal of time arranging the dinosaurs in artistic tableaus in the sandy yard:
I even have found a few other interesting applications of dinosaurs lately (although these are a little older):
I'm so happy he still harbors dinosaur love. It's infectious. In fact, my sweet hubby had a birthday last month and in my lack of blogging didn't get a post up. (Bad me! Sorry!) He got some nice things for his camera, but he also requested a couple of the latest Papo dinosaurs. We love that brand. Amazing models. (Troy and I will always have a special spot in our hearts for these little models, thanks to our son.)
|Daddy and Daughter out to Birthday Lunch|
|Some of the old dinosaurs welcoming the new additions|
Anyway, I guess I'm just saying that I really enjoy the passionate fan boy that is my son. Clearly he comes by it honestly - I have been a fan girl all my life, starting with my earliest loves of The Black Stallion, E.T. and Ziggy. Something tells me I was not as cool as my son is. Ain't no Black Stallion at Comicon!! But I was just as passionate. So glad he keeps up the pop-culture energy at our house.