To Paul: this is how you spent the day you turned 3 years and 10 months old.
You stride in with a grumpy morning face, but are soon wallowing around on the bed with me, baby-turtling it. We have extreme cuddles. Dad liberates me to go for a run, which I do while he takes you in to play with the latest epic train track in your bedroom. “Wanna build an elephant train?” he proposes. You’re in.
You eat toast and dried mango for breakfast on the front porch, and he drives you to the Crowders’ for Spanish camp. It’s a who-knows? kind of day. I pick you up at 5:30, and you’re racing toy cars around the living room table with Riley while the girls lurk in the shrubery outside, pretending to be pet unicorns. Kalia tells me she just heard you speak a lot of Spanish, asking for milk and telling her the words for things. Ms. Patricia beats a hasty retreat, which I take to mean you all have been terrible to her.
You ask if you can watch some talking trains in the car, right now, and I consent. It’s pretty hard to pry you out of playtime, so I’ll agree to pretty much anything if you’ll motivate your own departure. I leave you buckled into the backseat, holding my phone and watching a video of a cartoon train singing Christmas carols in Hindi. Kid you not.
Once Annie is wrangled, you two manage to find more ridiculous cartoons on YouTube that get you all the way home and seated at the dinner table. The video ends before dinner is served, though, so I have time to show you today’s exciting new deck feature: the climbing net. You scamper right up it a time or two. Athlete.
You eat the fruit and cheese off your dinner plate, declining to touch the actual, real, delicious food, but whatever you’re three. We video-chat with Gobka and Gamma, who have coincidentally cooked the exact same roast chicken dish for dinner. (The one you won’t eat.) You are very excited for them to hear you say the word poopy. Again, three years old.
You devour a scoop of ice cream for dessert and whiz through your bedtime routine to allow for an episode of Octonauts. Then to the bedroom, where you do a lap or two with your train and then snuggle in for a Mercy Watson book. You get into bed without too much fuss, and I tell you a story about two marmots looking for a home in the mountains of Colorado, in honor of the Klingners. Goodnight, Pablo!