The first movie they watched on continual play was a video of pictures from their first year. My daughter would narrated it every night by repeating the same phrases for each picture: "there's my ng tube! There's my ng tube again! I liked to pull out my ng tube and Mommy said 'no, no'. That picture is at Grandma's house. That picture is on her refrigerator. What am I looking at? I love you!"
And as much as I loved watching those first year pictures again, after several months of watching the same images on continual loop, we decided to introduce a second video. Welcome the Lovenberg family from New Jersey.
Right after we started treatments, we went on a trip to Disney World (which, it turns out, is not a great place to go if you're infertile). We brought a video camera around and made a movie for our niece. Part of the movie was the opening ceremony where they invite a random family to open the park. The day we were at the Magic Kingdom, the Lovenberg family was throwing the confetti. Dad, Mom, daughter and son all squinting into the bright morning light while we filmed them hanging out with Mickey and friends. We started watching the Lovenbergs on continual play, with my daughter shouting out the lines of Miss Hildegarde Olivia Harding, citizen of Main Street USA and the hostess for the opening ceremony (apparently, the name goes with the character--there are several Hildegarde Olivia Hardings floating about and a different woman plays her on different days).
And we started musing about the Lovenbergs. What did the parents do? Dad was maybe a fireman or a police officer. Mum stayed home and clipped recipes from magazines. Son was probably in college by now and daughter was eyeing the better room in the house. We googled them, thinking that we would send them a copy of the video, but there were too many Lovenbergs in New Jersey. One rents port-a-potties. Another works in a first aid squad. One wrote reviews on a cheap gas site. How would we know which was our beloved Lovenberg family?
Mommy soon tired of watching the Lovenberg's throw pixie dust, though I had to replace the film with something more interesting, more colourful, and more exciting than a family of four squinting. In came Free to Be You and Me.
The quintessential favourite of our generation. I know you startled a bit when you read the title and maybe you immediately jumped to your favourite song and starting singing it in your head. For me, it would be "Agatha Frye" or "Glad To Have a Friend Like You." Maybe for you it's "It's Alright to Cry" or the non-musical "Ladies First." The kids were immediately hooked and they've moved their obsession from song to song at least providing some variety.
Their favourite at the moment is "Brothers and Sisters." But it is not for its infectious beat or radical dance moves (please, if you haven't seen it in a while, click the link at the bottom of the post to check out the intensely high kicks on top of the jungle gym at the end). It's all for the blond boy who pulls up the rear in the scene when they are walking single file through the playground.
One night, Josh mentioned that the boy appears only in that one scene and he challenged me to find him elsewhere. We started it over and watched it two more times and found him several more times, striking a pose (he's in the second row of people in the beginning sequence), going down a slide, bobbing his head at the end of a tunnel. We have collectively fallen in love with him and named him John-John. It is currently my daughter's job to call out "there he is!" every time he comes on the screen. We only find him more endearing when he messes up one of those early moves by throwing his hands up in the air when everyone else is crouching down.
One day, they will tire of Free to Be. Either they will tire or more realistically, I will tire and then hide the DVD. I often wonder what will come next. Will it be Schoolhouse Rocks? Another try with Really Rosie? Old Electric Company clips? But even more interesting to daydream about is who we will collectively fall in love with next. The girl who pulls out her adjectives? Pierre who is eaten by a lion? The letter "E" who can turn a can into a cane? Only time will tell.
For a walk down memory lane or to see our favourite dancer, click here.