Wednesday, 14 December 2016
eight at last
Today marks the birthday of our youngest monkey, Alistair.
It has been a remarkable year for Alistair. I doubt that he realises that of course! For the first time, he seemed a quite exited about his birthday. He has in the past been a bit non-plussed about all the fuss but his year, he has been talking about the big day and mentioned it a few times. He wasn't exited enough for his internal clock to wake him up early, he was the last one up.
His development is accelerating at a frightening speed, all aspects of his life are in flux. It is a bit like a exponential curve, it took a long while to get momentum but now he is on a roll. Compared to his peers, he is still immature but that's fine by me and not really surprising given his start in life.
He has taken a huge stretch and I am ashamed to admit that all his trousers are too short. It happened so quickly! Every time I see him with his ankle skimmers I feel a pang of guilt and I promise myself that after the next wash, the jeans would go to charity. Alas, they always seem to end up in his wardrobe. His legs are still too short for James' cast offs.... I don't know where Alistair takes the energy to grow, he must be able to extract it from thin air. His eating habits are infamous and often he drives me up the walls with his slow distracted eating. to eat a small plate of food, even food he loves, he needs encouragement to pick up his fork and many reminders to stop faffing.
Alistair is the most openly affectionate of my children and regularly climbs on my lap for a cuddle. He often tells me how much he loves me, which makes me really really happy. Only the dog is more affectionate than Alistair. When we walk to Beavers, or anywhere else, he usually slides his hand in mine. Without fail, he says he really likes holding my hand. I always say that I really like holding his. They are usually a bit grubby.
Alistair is also the only one who shares my passion for science fiction. Sometimes we watch Star Trek Voyager episodes together.
Alistair is quite obsessive with the things he loves. His current big love are Pokemon cards and anything that is on a screen (but he is less keen on the telly). The latter has been an obsession ever since we first met him. The former is more recent. Alistair has a small pile of Pokemon cards with him at all times. When asleep, the cards are under his pillow. Leaving the house without the cards is close to disastrous. I have a big box of Pokemon cards that I got cheaply on Ebay and I use them as rewards. I often find him looking through my cards (he is convinced I am a distinguished but gullible collector, not quite certain what treasures I own) and I find him look longingly at particular ones. He is a bit cheeky actually, always making sure he gets the best (I don't know by what measure), leaving the crumbs for James, who doesn't care much - thankfully.
His other big obsession are all things electronic. Alistair would play games 24/7 if he was allowed to. He is sometimes a bit sneaky. Last night for example I walked past his bedroom and I noticed a blue glow. It was 10:30 and yes, you are guessing right, he was playing on his Nintendo and had been doing so since he went to bed at 8:30. He had smuggled the device under his duvet. He is very tech savvy and I am in no doubt that he will turn his passion into a job one day. I often find myself restricting his access because I want him to do other things. To be fair, he often does other things, just less enthusiastically so. When I do, he paces the house, proclaiming ultimate boredom, until he finds something else. His first response to boredom is calling granny. He loves calling his granny and I sometimes find him on the phone, talking to her or complaining about her answering phone message, which he thinks is garbled nonsense (Swiss German). He has figured out the phone in no time. I find a good compromise with screens is to let him work with the school apps (for example Sumdog) because he doesn't care all that much what he does, as long as it is on a screen.
Despite his obsession with screens he is a sociable little creature and he loves company. He plays football with the school team and goes to Beavers, both activities he loves. I am a bit sad actually, his Beaver days are coming to an end and he will join Cubs after the Christmas holiday. At the moment, Alistair and James engage in Nerf wars with the two remaining Nerf gun bullets.
Alistair always has something in his pockets (in addition to the Pokemon cards). Often he has a handful of assorted lego figures with him, or a rubber dinosaur, a small car. Anything basically that fits in this trouser pockets. One day I'll get him cargo pants with multiple pockets, or maybe a hunters vest.
Alistair does well at school when he wants to. His teachers say that 'Alistair sometimes listens'. He is neither ahead nor behind, so nothing to worry - even if he doesn't listen.
Did I mention that Alistair is a diva? He knows how to get attention and enjoys it, too. When he has the tiniest hint of a scratch on his body, his performance is worth of being filmed. He sometimes comes running, shouting 'I am bleeding' when as a matter of fact, the skin is barely scraped. Plasters are his solution to everything.
He is a likeable little boy and I am glad we have to privilege to be his parents.
Wishing you a lovely day. xx