The past two weeks Katie has been getting up early and asking if she can come to Mass with me and Anthony. Usually when I take both of them to daily Mass it's a recipe for disaster because they fight over my lap and it usually results in Anthony crying loudly or screaming. But since she's been asking to go things have been surprisingly calm. The kids are getting along and they've both been very quiet.
I find that what works best with keeping them happy is giving each of them a notebook and some crayons so they can just color and draw. But while Anthony spends a lot of time playing at my feet or just exploring the pew, he does also pay attention. Some days he watches intently and imitates what the priest is doing as he says Mass. There have even been times where I've heard him trying to say what the priest is saying. I think he thinks he's helping them out. He typically only does it when it's one of the two priests he knows best, his godfather and his "favorite priest." (Father has insisted since he was very small that he's Anthony's favorite.)
So today while in line to receive communion Anthony was having a great time singing on the way up. Katie, soaking in her surroundings was happily waving her latest drawings, until she got very serious before bowing before the eucharist just before getting a blessing. And then I notice Father motioning for me to look at Anthony who was in my arms. He was really hoping to receive communion. He had his tongue out and had this "I'm waiting" sort of expression on his face. He was visibly disappointed that he got denied. He has plenty of people who attend daily Mass who all think he already has a good understanding of what goes on at Mass. Perhaps they're right. I'm curious to see how he reacts going forward. Today was the first time I've ever noticed him hoping to receive.
It amazes me how much little ones pick up when they attend Mass frequently.