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Three

My baby is now three.

Three!

 

Blowing out the candles on the Mainly Music ‘cake’

People kept saying to me ‘Gosh, that’s whizzed by!’  Nuh-uh.  Two felt loooooooong.  Chip is a challenging kid who keeps me on my toes.  He has oodles of energy, much of which is spent testing every boundary known to toddler-kind.  Chip has a strong personality with big emotions.  He can be exhausting and exasperating, AND hilarious and cheeky in equal measure.  Many times I have thought ‘It’s just as well you are so cute!’

From about 2 and a half, he went through an aggressive pushing and hitting stage that seemed to go on forever.  And truth be told, he’s not quite out of it yet.  But hey, he’s three.

Receiving a gift on his birthday

 

Over the past few weeks the changes in his behaviour as he moves into his ‘threenager‘ year are quite pronounced, and rather delightful.

I CAN DO IT!  Chip is a very independent guy, but he has cranked this up full dial.  He currently runs about our house with a chair so he can get things from the fridge or cupboards himself, and – most fun of all – turn the lights on and off.

WHY? This is his favourite word.  Every. Single.Thing. must be questioned.  ‘Okay, it’s time to go.’  ‘Why?’  ‘Oh look, it’s raining.’  ‘Why?’  ‘Do you want peanut butter or jam?’  ‘Why?’  ‘I think Mayor Goodway from Paw Patrol is definitely on psychotropic drugs.’ ‘Why?’  You get the picture.  If you have a bad case of the whys in your house, hang in there!  Sure, it’s weird to have your every utterance questioned, but it doesn’t last long.  And also, this is how they LEARN.  Don’t interrupt that, even though it makes you want to have a nice lie-down in a sensory-deprivation tank.

YES, I HAVE HEARD OF THE THEORY OF RELATIVITY.  Three-year old’s KNOW stuff.  They’ve got skills, man.  Any attempt I make to teach something in his orbit of interest is met with a scornful eye-roll and groans of ‘I KNOW that, Mummy’.  And if I get my backhoe loaders mixed up with my excavators, he will be sure to point it out.

Just for the record, this is a steamroller

WHY, INDUBITABLY, MY DEAR WATSON!  Chip was an early talker, but just lately his conversational skills have increased in fluency.  He’s capable of speaking in quite long sentences, and telling reasonably complicated stories that generally involve bad guys getting their comeuppance.

I’M SUPER, THANKS FOR ASKING.  Like most three-year old’s, imaginary play now takes up a lot of Chip’s play.  He likes super-hero stuff – although I don’t yet let him watch Batman/Spider-Man etc because it’s too dark and violent.  He likes to be Maui (from Moana), and Optimus Prime (from Rescue Bots) but is equally into Bob the Builder, Fireman Sam and Postman Pat, those everyday, working-for-a-living heroes.  A favourite book is The Astonishing Secret of Awesome Man, by Michael Chabon, which I highly recommend to parents if you want a giggle.

Image result for awesome man

Thanks, Whanganui District Library!

MULTIPLE PERSONALITY DISORDER.  Chip announces ‘I want rice bubbles for breakfast’, or ‘I want a drink of water‘ and then howls forlornly when presented with said item.  ‘I don’t want rice bubbles!’  ‘I didn’t ask for water!’  No amount of reasoning with him that Mummy, Daddy and his sister all heard him ask for it, will persuade him otherwise.  It must have been Not-Chip.  And do not get me started about the theatrics if we give him the wrong cup, or cut a sandwich the wrong way, or even worse, cut his bread at all.  We have managed to alleviate some of these tantrums by simply fostering his independence (see above).  I allow him to cart a chair around so he can help himself from the fridge and cupboards.  I even purchased those pouring containers for storing cereal so he can easily fix himself breakfast.

 

Ah, three.

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Three

My baby girl turned three the other day.  Three feels like such a milestone.  You know, you blink a couple of times and the next thing you know your kid is starting school.  Blink some more and they are a grunting teenager incapable of speech longer than monosyllables; one more blink and their room is empty as they venture fresh-faced into the world.  But I digress.

totsintawhero12

Sausage: the threenager

 

In many ways she is still the same – extroverted and friendly, articulate and dramatic.  But over the course of the year she has learned to sing (often in tune!) loads of songs off by heart, climb up our slide, use the loo, share occasionally, give people cuddles when they are sad, sleep in a big-girl bed, dropped her daytime nap, diagnose serious health conditions (“your heart is loose, you need a plaster”), and actually grew enough hair to warrant a haircut.

She snuck in some ‘threenager’ behaviour a few weeks early, dissolving into tears over matters like getting the wrong spoon, making a mistake while drawing so it became ‘ruined’, and if you ask her what she did today she will answer with world-weary insouciance:”nothing”.  I can’t wait to see what hilarity unfolds over the next year, if this is any indication of what’s to come.

Her birthday was similar to last year’s, in true Dollar Diet style – morning tea in our backyard, with the paddling pool and slip ‘n’ slide.  But this year there was more playing with her friends, more collaboration and negotiation amongst the toddlers (‘caring and sharing’, reminds her friend N, who is four), more excitement over presents and cake.

In two weeks time I will become that heretofore mythical being – a kindy mum.  Sausage cannot wait to start ‘school’, as she calls it.  We’ve gone to her preschool to use their playground over these summer holidays, and each time she is disappointed that her teachers are not there.  She is more than ready for kindy, and I’m sure she won’t be the slightest bit perturbed at spending a few mornings away from her brother and I.

Here’s to being three.

 

What else can I look forward to with a threenager?  Let me know in the comments below.