Several months ago, long before the first trailers of the Hobbit began to run, I had the bright idea to read JRR Tolkien’s “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” aloud as a family. I knew it would be a little ambitious, and it was. But, it also turned out to be fun. I did most of the reading with my six and eight year olds taking turns once in a while. The whole book took us about two months to read. I can’t say how much of the book they did or will remember, but certain scenes got their attention, like the dufus trolls and the fighting mountains. I do know that they liked the book enough to pick a “Hobbit” theme for our family’s Halloween costumes – with our three-year old as Bilbo Baggins himself.
Flash forward to Christmas break and an unexpected moment of quiet in our lives. A day off for my kids and Dad on the same day. No relatives or guests. What to do?
We all wanted to see the Hobbit, but going as a family was going to be tough. My husband and son were dying to see the 3D version, which tends to give me a headache, and is too much for our daughter. Then, there was the matter of our little Bilbo…who would likely be terrified by the big-screen adventure. Like a real Hobbit, he enjoys his afternoon nap far too much to be bothered with things like movies.
So we went in shifts. Father and son took the early 3D shift – for one, because they just couldn’t wait, but also to run a little recon for our daughter. As expected, they thought the movie was “AWESOME,” and weren’t sure if our girl would be able to handle it. Message received. She was going. Period.
As great as the movie was, our “girls afternoon” was the “awesome” part for me. Special time alone with Mom is pretty rare around here and my daughter took full advantage. We got popcorn, snuggled into our seats and covered our eyes at the scary parts of the REGULAR, NON-3D version of the movie.
When we got home, the boys had put together a fun Hobbit-themed dinner. Chunks of leftover holiday ham and cheese, hunks of bread and soup. We even enjoyed chamomile tea in Hobbit fashion and talked about the movie. I was so thankful for my crew and our own little adventure.