Ben is really into Star Wars. He says he is growing up to be a Jedi. And who can blame him? Jedis are pretty cool. Defenders of peace and justice in the galaxy, they use the force for defense, never for attack (that is straight from the Jedi training oath, by the way). We knew about Jedi training last year, but he was a bit young then at 4 years old. He did pick out a Jedi Training t-shirt last year and has been talking about it....since then. This year, he was ready. Well...sort of. Ben is not a big fan of the limelight sometimes. You just never know how it will go. When we arrived for the 3:30 show in Tomorrowland, he was pumped though. He jumped up and down, signifying his readiness for training. The show was really cool and really dramatic - the Jedis come out in hooded cloaks (think Obi-Wan Kenobi from the first Star Wars...well, the 4th Star Wars actually. Yes, I'm old school. Star Wars: A New Hope was the first movie I ever saw as a kid in the movie theaters). They are very serious, they scan the crowd for those strong in the force, select about 20 kids, invite them to don Padawan robes, and give them (training) light sabers. Sadly, Ben wasn't selected...but he was fine with it. He sat down and watched while the little Jedis were put through the moves with their light sabers. There was a "disturbance in the force," storm troopers came running out and the whole stage floor rose up to reveal Darth Vader and Darth Maul, who the kids then had to fight to complete their training. Pretty intimidating stuff.
(For me, this was kind of like watching the parades with the kids last year at Disneyland - they BELIEVE in it so much. "It's Tinkerbell! It's Ariel!" It is really amazing to watch their faces when magic is at work.)
I posted updates to Facebook about Ben not getting selected and got all kinds of advice about how to get him selected - jump up and down, get the family really involved, pointing at him, etc. (Thanks Facebook friends!) He was ready to try again the next day. This time, Lily decided she wanted to do the training too. So she jumped along with him. Surprise, surprise (I just KNEW it would happen!), Ben decided to just watch, Lily kept jumping and (of course!) she was selected. She walked up, put on her robe, got her light saber and proceeded to train and fight Darth Vadar. Ben was totally ok with it and I was so impressed with him. I had conflicting feelings actually - I felt really bad for him, was excited for Lily - but I was mainly just very proud of both of them. It is not easy to fight Darth Vader (especially for a little girl who HATES characters and people in big costumes! I think is actually had a lot to do with the Jedis encouraging her and Mom and Dad NOT being there with her) and it is not easy to watch your twin sister get to do YOUR favorite, most special thing in the world.
After Lily was done, she was given
a certificate of her Jedi Padawaness. She allowed us to take a picture
with it, then immediately pushed it towards Ben, saying "You can have
it, Ben." He pushed it right back to her, telling her "No. It's yours."
He knew she had earned that and I think he was really proud of her too.
It was a cool moment for my boy-girl twins. They really do take care of each other.
Ben and Lily also got to build their own light sabers at the Star
Trader store near the Jedi Training area. These things look like they
are going to be trashy, but they are actually really well made. And the
kids love the customization of it. You get to pick out your saber
color, your handle, put power crystals in it (I wasn't aware before
that this was what gives a light saber its power), a lightbulb, etc.
And only about $20. Very good deal.