Elisabeth and I give thanks for many things in our lives: Wallace, Spam, and Netflix being a very short list of items for which we are thankful. Thanksgiving Day is the day we adopted Wallace and brought him home from Russia. We, however, were not so thankful when Wallace woke up at 4:30 AM on Thanksgiving morning 2015.
Wallace apparently could not sleep because he was too excited for Thanksgiving. That meant that we all woke up at 4:30 AM.
“Dad, let’s go outside!”
“Not the best idea right now, son.”
“Mom, will you make me breakfast now?”
“After the sun comes up, I will.”
“Hey guys, I want to dress up for Thanksgiving!”
“OK, but let’s wait about six hours to get dressed.”
“Ohh man!” (not Wallace’s exact words)
I managed to convince Wallace that he and I should go downstairs to let Elisabeth try to sleep some more. Sometimes, a Dad must “take one for the team.” Wallace and I enjoyed some quality Disney Channel time though I did have to nix the pre-dawn consumption of M&Ms. ADHD adds a whole new facet to a family’s life.
Elisabeth came downstairs some time later ready for battle, umm, ready to make pumpkin pies. Though we were not hosting Thanksgiving dinner, Elisabeth had the honor of making her mother’s pumpkin chiffon pie. Elisabeth made two pies to take to two different family dinners. The Rankins were on the Thanksgiving Food Circuit this year.
The recipe for pumpkin chiffon pie calls for the cook to separate multiple egg whites. It was during this point in the process that Wallace decided he need to show Mom something other than egg whites. Elisabeth quite pointedly stated that Wallace should immediately leave the kitchen or else be prepared to eat spinach for the rest of his life.
Feeling “unloved,” Wallace then proceeded to go up to his room whereupon he finally went back to sleep. I then did the only thing possible at this point: I went to Elisabeth’s favorite place for coffee and got her a large “1&1” to go.
Wallace, mercifully, slept for a couple of hours and Elisabeth had her favorite coffee. Life on Arlington Avenue quieted down for a while.
All good things must come to an end and Wallace eventually woke up from his nap. He woke up ready to get dressed for Thanksgiving. To his credit, Wallace wanted to look “handsome” for Thanksgiving. Wallace solicited advice from both Mom and Dad and eventually came up with this look:
Elisabeth and I managed to dress ourselves without the need of a committee. Elisabeth looked as beautiful as ever while I went for the semi-formal woodsman look.
With pumpkin chiffon pie and cucumber-based appetizers in hand, the Rankin family departed for the one mile trip to dine with Elisabeth’s sister and her family.
Wallace had a fun time with his older cousins and played a mean game of football while wearing his formal ensemble. No button down shirts were harmed in bringing you this report. However, Wallace showed that he could catch a touchdown pass while still keeping his necktie smartly centered on his shirt.
[Some people wonder why we let Wallace play football while wearing a suit. Elisabeth and I decided that we can always wash clothes but fun memories seemed more important on this particular day. Other people wonder what happened to the margins for this aside.]
We later drove over to another dinner hosted by Elisabeth’s niece. Elisabeth and I did not eat much, but Wallace partook of the traditional Thanksgiving chips and salsa. We ended the day relatively early. ADHD, RAD and lack of sleep can take a toll on a kid (and parents).
This was not the most exciting Thanksgiving for the Rankin family. On the other hand, our family was together and Wallace enjoyed the holiday even if he woke up three hours before sunrise. Nothing makes Elisabeth and me happier than seeing our son enjoy himself despite all of the challenges he faces in life.