A few weeks ago, Alex and I were in the car running errands. From the back seat came an excited voice, "Mom, I saw a plate!" Distractedly, "Uh-huh". More excitement, "Mom, I saw another plate!" My response, "You saw a plate?", still sadly unfocused. "Look, Mom, there is a plate on that house." Now more confused than distracted, I responded, "That sure seems like a strange place to keep a plate."
The next day found us driving on a different stretch of road. From the back seat, Alex said, "Mom, I can't see any sad lights." My very helpful answer, "Well, that's good. Isn't it?" A few minutes later, "Mom, why can't I see any sad lights?" I'm thinking, "Sad lights? What on earth are sad lights? We have a Sad Sock Bucket for mate less socks. We have sad toys, whose batteries have died and Mom hasn't replaced them. What are Sad Lights?" My answer to my boy was, "Alex, I don't know why you can't see any sad lights. Maybe the lights aren't sad." Suddenly, with great excitement, "Mom, I see a sad light on that house over there." The clouds parted and a ray of understanding finally came to my foggy brain. Rewind to a lovely September morning when Alex and I walked the big kids to school. On our way home, we walked on "Mom's Bike Trail". As Alex looked at the houses that backed onto the trail, he was curious about those funny circles that stuck up from so many houses. I told him that they were satellite dishes that people used for their TVs. Satellite? Sad Lights? "Alex, are you talking about the satellite dish?" With great joy at finally being understood, "Yeah, Mom. I see a sad light." With a little more understanding I asked, "And, Alex, when you saw the plates on the houses were you talking about satellite dishes?" Dishes? Plates? it's all coming together. "Yeah, Mom!"
Now, as we drive around town we have fun looking for people's dishes. Some days they're "sad lights" and some day they're "plates", but they're always fun to look for.