I have places to go and people to see, or at least I get to spend an evening tuning out the troubling world and focusing on my so cool family. In addition to a couple nice gifts (including an old video game Sonic, that I used to play all those years ago when we was fab), a homemade card, and a specially wrapped pencil courtesy of my youngest, my boys also pulled together and got me a small, leather bound pocket copy of The Hobbit. Including artwork by Tolkien himself. How cool was that? After homemade cherry pie by request, my 8th grader suggested we read The Hobbit together as a family Since we have enough copies of the book, each of us will have a copy, and parts have been divvied out. The lack of female parts relegated my wife to the sort of character parts that Scout would understand. I get to be the narrator and Gandalf (naturally), plus a later appearance as Bard. The boys will divide everything else, with my wife handling the poems and songs. So after watching the classic How the Grinch Stole Christmas with our youngest, once he's in bed, we're going to dive into our own family rendition of The Hobbit, in anticipation of the upcoming Jackson films.
FWIW, if you're ever itching to dine on appropriate hobbit fare, you might want to try this little gem of a website. It contains references to the foods mentioned in The Hobbit, as well as appropriate recipes. Yum. And now, it's there and back again and as I bid all a goodnight. TTFN.