James is a multifaceted person.
He is the youngest in our family, although he would argue that the chickens and dogs are younger than him.
He seems to a blend of his brother and sister, instead of a blend of Lee and me. I wonder how often parents stop to consider that younger siblings aren't only raised by them, but by the older siblings as well. Poor James often has two extra 'parents', plus the typical ribbing that takes place.
On the good side of having older siblings, James has developed many more of his innate gifts because of them. He and Pearl would spend hours working on artistic endeavors when they were littler. Now he works on them all on his own. He makes stop motion movies with Legos. He draws cartoons. He also can get something from a two-dimensional state, to a three-dimensional state. He can look at directions for an origami piece, and in a few minutes he's got it in his hand. I have tried multiple times to make a 'Peace Crane'. I ended up with several pieces of wadded up paper in the trash and wasn't feeling very peaceful. The large star in the picture is 48-sided. Forty-eight. He made several of them for our Christmas tree this year. He took some to school and someone dared him to make one out of
1 x 1 inch paper. No problem. It is exactly to scale by half. It has 24 sides.
The thing is, this sort of art is where he begins to be like Tom. Origami, is in a sense, mechanical. Tom is mechanical. He's math minded. He and Lee have taken apart our computers like fathers and sons used to take apart cars. Tom is who first introduced James to Legos. Legos are art melded with function. Legos have morphed into so much more, and James has followed. They now have a robotics division in Legos. He wants to know how things work, much like Tom. He's also followed Tom's lead when it comes to sports. Thankfully, he followed Tom into soccer instead of bowing to the Texas god of Football.
Some could argue that Tom and Pearl got some of their gifts from Lee and me. I guess they'd be right. Still, for better or for worse, older siblings influence who the younger siblings will grow up to be. Right now James wants to design engines and cars, or play professional soccer when he grows up. Maybe he'll do both.