I decided that today would be a day to celebrate one of my favorite characters since I had my girls: Olivia. I just love Olivia. I think she's hysterical. And clever. I'd love for my girls to make a friend like Olivia.
I signed Hadley and Harper up for a music class that we go to on Wednesday mornings, so before we left for it, I thought reading Olivia Forms a Band would be appropriate. Hadley liked the pages where Olivia is playing her instruments and the words are all over the page: "PING, KLING, STRUUUM, CLANG, THUMP, THUMP, BWAP!
Both girls got pretty quiet when the family begins to watch the fireworks. Up until these pages, the colors are classic Olivia colors: white, black, red, and a little blue. But these pages are dark with beautiful yellows and oranges for the firecrackers. They seem to sparkle, and it's hard not to feel like you're watching the fireworks yourself (or, at least remembering quite clearly past fireworks shows).
The pages Hadley wanted to focus on, however, were the pages where Olivia decided to put on lipstick. We read those over several times. Hadley wanted to know exactly what Olivia was doing, and why that made her mom so mad. It seems that Hadley has a fascination with the naughty things kids do. She understands what Olivia did was wrong, but she sees that beautiful smile on Olivia when she puts on her lipstick, and also understands that sometimes something that is naughty is great fun. It's hard for me not to get a thrill when I see Hadley studying Olivia's actions. Hadley does the same thing in the book Olivia when Olivia paints the walls of her home and gets a time out. She knows this is wrong, and yet, it looks so darn fun! It's almost worth a time out.
I secrectly enjoy that Hadley "gets" Olivia. It's not that I want her to do bad things, but I like that she sees the thrill in what Olivia's doing. It reminds me of a time in college when my friend Alison and I were trying to study at the library. We were sitting right next to a copier, and apparently that was the night that everyone wanted to make copies of their entire textbook. We were getting so distracted by the noise that we put an "Out of Order" sign on the machine. Of course, this caused even more of a distraction because every time a student would walk up to the copier with their 5,872 page book they wanted to copy, they'd huff and puff when they saw it was out of order, and Alison and I would get the giggles. It got so we would look forward to the next student that would come to the copier. I think Olivia would've been in on that with us.
Anyway, we went to music class and then later in the afternoon I suggested we paint the scene where Olivia paints on the wall (I taped posterboard to a window so Hadley got the "feel" of perhaps painting on the wall).
But Hadley was more interested in trying to re-create this scene:
She looks great, doesn't she?
I let girls have at it and here's what they came up with:
I tried to encourage Hadley to not mix the colors up so they make black. She said, "Everyone has a favorite color, Mom. Mine is black." Well, then. There you have it.
Harper gave it a shot, too, but was more interested in trying to destroy what Hadley was working on. She kept saying, "Harper's turn!" and trying to paint on Hadley's picture. I'm afraid Harper's going to be the kid that gets kids like Olivia into worse trouble then they might already be in. I can see her saying, "Sure, painting on the wall is cool, but you know what would be even cooler? Painting your mom's plants and the bedspread in her bedroom!"
Either way, I'm thankful for stories with Olivia in it.