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Brave – Really for Kids?

My kids and I had been waiting for like six months to see this movie. My girls were so excited that we decided to go on opening weekend, which is something we rarely do (I really hate crowds). My post is going to have some spoilers, so if you don’t want to know, stop reading.

First, let me say that I really liked the movie. My problem is that the trailers for the movie, both the ones in theaters and on TV don’t really let you know what the movie’s about. In the commercials we’re presented with a young girl who doesn’t want to be forced into marriage, who wants to fight her own battles, who wants to change her destiny.

All great things and worth seeing the movie for.

What the trailers leave out is that in order to change her destiny, she goes to a witch and asks her to change her mother. Generic wish — we see where that’s going, right?

Well, the mother changes into a bear. Which just so happens to be the one creature that her father wants to kill since a bear took his leg. Plenty of drama and conflict here.

Merida has 2 days to fix everything, or her mother will remain a bear forever. This is pretty typical stuff, but Trouble, my 7 year old, cried through most of the last third of the movie. Although I had reassured her there would be a happy ending, she was really bothered by the hints of the bear taking over the mom. Eleanor, the mom, managed to push back those instincts to keep herself, but as time wore on, there was more bear than Eleanor.

Like I said, I really liked the movie. It’s an awesome representation of the struggle between daughters and their mothers. I just think that Pixar capitalized on funny moments — Merida disobeying her mother and shooting arrows after being told not to, watching the triplets cause trouble — that viewers didn’t realize the darker side to the story.

If I had known that, I don’t know that I would’ve taken Trouble to see it. Shorty and Eeyore were fine, but they’re older; they know they’re guaranteed a happy ending. Trouble couldn’t stand the thought of something so awful happening to Mom.

Which is a good thing for me, I guess.

Have you seen Brave? What did you think?

Stop by tomorrow for my 100th post and a special announcement.

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Meet My Cast

I’ve been blogging for a couple of months now and I’ve mentioned a few times that I have 3 kids. I find that it’s been really hard to blog and not include such a huge part of my life (motherhood). I believe that since they are minors and haven’t asked to be a part of any of this, they have a right to privacy, but it makes it hard to talk about stuff.

I’ve been thinking for a long time now about how to refer to them in the blog since I obviously don’t want to use their real names. Many authors use cute monikers that go together for their kids. Lucy March/Lani Diane Rich for example refers to her daughter as Sweetness and Light. Inez Kelley calls hers Spawnetta, Damien, and the Omen. I couldn’t think of anything that would fit them as a group, so I decided to keep it individual.

First up is Eeyore. This is name fits my son because he’s right on the edge of teenagerhood, clinging to bits of childhood. Not a week goes by when I don’t hear how much he hates his life over and over (That might have something to do with me being the Mean Mom of the neighborhood.) He loves Legos and Star Wars, especially Yoda. He is severely disappointed to find out that his Jedi mind tricks don’t work on Supreme Emperor Mom.

Next, is Shorty. We call her Shorty McShort-Short all the time. There’s nothing medically wrong with her. She’s just a short kid. It looks like her younger sister will soon catch up to her height. Of the three of my kids, Shorty is most like me, both in

appearance and personality. All 3 of the kids are readers, but she’s the one I have to threaten with losing her books (that’s sounds awful, but nothing else works). She’s also my biggest fan and cheerleader on my publishing journey, even though she’s too young to read what I write.

Finally, there’s Trouble. We often tell her that we’re going to legally change her name to Trouble because that is what she’s been from the beginning. She was conceived while I was on the pill. She is the only one of the 3 who had minor complications during delivery; the one who refused to stand or walk until I made her go to physical therapy at 18 months; the one who discovered how nicely markers color on my walls (and toys and her body), especially black Sharpies. I fear her getting to adolescence because since the age of 2 she’s had a weird fascination with motorcycles, tattoos, and drummers.

I love all of my kids equally, just not necessarily equally at the same time. I often play favorites and I tell them. Some days, I look at one of them and say, “I think you’re my favorite today.” It never stays the same for long. They each get a turn and part of them, I think, likes that I make a little fuss.

Shorty, for instance, was my favorite the day I had to pay for her braces simply because her braces cost me more than $2000 less than her brother’s. I have no idea why. But it made her smile on a day she wasn’t thrilled.

Trouble becomes my favorite when she rushes up to me to give me a big hug and kiss, just because. She’s still young enough for this to happen often.

For Eeyore, the favorite days are few and far between right now because hormones get in the way, but every now and then, his sharp wit will snap out a remark that will make me laugh so hard I cry. On those days, he’s my favorite because not only is it usually a much needed laugh, but it’s always a sharp and intelligent comment that he whips at us.

What do you call your kids when they’re not around? Or maybe if they are around?