Today Caleb turns three years old. There is something about 3 that suddenly seems like a little boy; to me, it's the age that my baby isn't my baby anymore. Although we still have lots of cuddles all around in this family, three is a reminder that they won't be little for long.
Caleb started his celebrations today by...sleeping in! That's right, he didn't wake until 6:30 am! It threw the whole morning off, because James had to be out early for work, but of course we had to do a big pancake breakfast and presents.
Caleb, Colin and I all waited at the top of the stairs while James readied the video camera. I remember my parents always made us wait on Christmas morning, and that extra 2 or 3 minutes were absolutely tortuous! James and I had decorated the kitchen last night so as to surprise Caleb this morning. As we sat waiting on the stairs, we only had a view of the living room (undecorated). As the living room came into view, Caleb stopped, and said sadly "There are no birthday decorations! Why are there no birthday decorations?" "Do you wish you had some decorations for today?" I inquired. "Yes," Caleb replied. "Maybe we can go to the store and get some later."
Cue the camera, and set Caleb off downstairs...you should have seen the look of wonder when he walked into the decorated kitchen. Streamers, banners, balloons, and a big stack of presents on the kitchen table. It was priceless.
The stack of presents was from James and I. A trip to the toy store the other day didn't yield any tips on what Caleb might like for his birthday gift. Mostly his interests are whatever Colin is doing. But one thing Caleb loves is dressing up in costumes (Score! His birthday is right after Halloween!) So I picked up a pile of superhero costumes for him. Batman, Spiderman, Ironman, and a pirate. There was pure happiness written all over his face as he tore open each package.
We got a webcam call from my parents in Australia. How cool is it that at the click of a button we can see them "face to face," and chat as if they were in the room? They sang "Happy Birthday" to Caleb. I'm pretty sure the singing of the birthday song is Caleb's favourite part of the celebrations.
Later tonight we are having hot dogs, french fries and chocolate cake (at the birthday boy's request.) Caleb's birthday kicks off a 6 week birthday extravaganza in our house, with all three boys' birthday in the next 6 weeks (as well as my nephew and arriving-any-day-new-nephew!) I guess, in our house, we sort of do have a holiday between Halloween and Christmas!
Here are some of my favourite things about Caleb:
I love his compassion. He is so attune to other people's emotions, and immediately wants to do what he can to help.
I love his grin. Still never really captured on camera, I may just have to hold this one in my memory. His eyes light up and his smile stretches from ear to ear. It warms my heart.
I love how he has embraced his role as big brother. He is always watching out for Benjamin, finding him a soother or a toy, trying to sing or clap to cheer Benjamin up when he's crying, asking him if he is okay or if he needs anything, or letting me know when Benjamin might be in trouble.
I love his train of thought. He has definite ideas he wants to express, even if there are a few detours to get there.
I love that he loves to pray. He always asks each of us what we are thankful for and what we would like to ask God for. Then he scrunches his eyes shut and does his very best to remember each and every detail.
I love that he loves to sing. He doesn't always remember all the words, but he makes something pretty good up for the lapses of memory. His favourite music selections are "Thriller" by Michael Jackson and anything by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. I love when he tries to say "Mormon Tabernacle Choir." He usually gets the "choir" part, and rolls over the rest. It comes out different every time.
I love his cuddles. He loves to sit on my lap when I read to him. (He always finds a good book for Benjamin to read so that Benjamin will be happy on the floor instead of on my lap.) When Caleb is tired, he loves to hop on my lap and cuddle into my arms.
I love how he lights up when you walk in the door. James gets this every day. I get to experience it much less, but when I do get to walk in after a short absence, there is nothing like being greeted by Caleb charging at the door, eyes shining, smile shining, and then having him leap up into your arms, throw his arms around your neck and bury himself in you. This is what being a mother is all about.
I love you, kiddo.