Tomorrow there is no school. We are ecstatic for the second day off this week. Wednesday the bus service was cancelled because it reached -47 degrees C with the wind chill! In mid-March (when the normal high is 0 degrees C)! However, if it's going to be cold, at least it was cold enough to get a bit of a PAID break thrown in.
After parking the bus at the compound this afternoon, I met another lady on the way to our vehicles. We chatted a bit and told each other to have a great day off tomorrow. She told me to "sleep in". I told her that it wasn't likely to happen as my kidlets usually wake up bright and early. She told me a little story about the days when her kids were younger, and said that if she wanted a day to sleep in, she got out their cereal, put them in bowls and told them that in the morning they could get up and get their own breakfast (and even put sugar on the cereal, the one day she allowed it) and she would get a little extra sleep. I told her that, unfortunately, this would never happen with my son because he does not begin any morning without a snuggle first, whether he crawls in with me, or if I'm up first, by snuggling on the couch when he gets up.
She then told me a cute story about her son. She said that she was his bus driver when he went to school, and every morning when he got off she told him to have a good day and that she loved him. There came a time, however, when he told her to stop saying that because she was embarrassing him in front of his friends. Somewhat hurt, she told him that she wanted him to know that she loved him and that if she couldn't say it then he needed to think of another way for her to tell him (and him to tell her).
He thought about it, and the next day, while getting off the bus, she looked at him in silence and he gave her the "thumbs up" sign, which she promptly returned. To this day, when her grown son and family come to visit her, he always drives away from the house with a "thumbs up" to his mom.
Feeling the warm fuzzies over this story, I retold it to my own mom. My daughter was listening, intently - or so I thought. I told my mom the story from the beginning, like I just told it now, how we met in the compound, how her kids fixed their own breakfast, and finally ending with the endearing "thumbs up" story.
After finishing the story, my daughter told me that we could do the "thumbs up". My mom, in a moment of astuteness, asked her what "thumbs up" meant. She promptly replied with,
"It means that I would be able to get up and get my own breakfast!" We all shared a hearty laugh over her reply.
Later on at home, my son and I were talking about "thumbs up". I often give him this sign on the bus when he asks me if he's been good. The "thumbs up" sign tells him that he has been, and he promptly responds with a smile and a "thumbs up" back.
I asked him what "thumbs up" meant. He told me that it meant that "he had been doing a good job". I was impressed. I told him that he was right. It meant that mom was "impressed, and that she really, really loved him". A little later, I again asked him what the sign meant, and he told me exactly what I had taught him.
Now I have a little boy who I can give the "thumbs up" to anytime across the room and I know a great bit smile will cover his face and he'll likely respond likewise.
And I have a daughter that if I give the "thumbs up" to, she'll sneak out of bed early and get her own breakfast.
Either way, it's all good.