Someday when Charlie is all grown up, and hopefully sitting awkwardly on the couch in our retirement cottage on the New England coast with a girl he really, really likes I'm going to break the ice by saying "Remember when you were five and you kicked Wes in the face during Hanging of the Greens at church?"
I mean, right there in the middle of all that winter stillness and anticipation of light in the darkness, WHAM! Size 1 sneaker RIGHT to the forehead.
There was screaming, as you might imagine, and then I told Charlie he couldn't have dessert, which Ryan said was the BEST punishment EVER. And it really was because after they light up the Chrismon trees and we sing Joy to the World we adjourn to the Fellowship Hall for dessert fellowship in the form of eight large tables covered from end to end in cookies and pie and brownies and candy (we made gingerbread men). (And also I told Charlie that he would lose cookies if he didn't stop picking on Wes, long before the face kicking incident. There were lots of foreshocks on both sides in the form of pinching, poking, sneering, and golf-pencil stealing)
He managed to join us up front when we hung ornaments on the tree together, but pouted with great vigor for the rest of the evening. He sat, slumped in a folding chair while the rest of us ate cookies.
It was pitiful. But not as pitiful as the giant red bruise on Wes's left temple.
Want another brownie, Wes? Here, have two!
Also behaved poorly during Hanging of the Greens. We took turns holding him in the back.