And now you are Three…

And now you are three.  What a year this has been, Kieran.

You’re not a baby any more at all.  You are a big boy – and you’re proud of it.  You just potty-trained yourself in about two weeks after going to San Diego for Uncle Oin’s wedding.  You had your heart set on some “Mater Underwear” (Tow Mater from CARS) and we told you that once you were doing all your business in the potty that we’d get them for you.  You already knew how to tinkle in the potty – you just didn’t want to for a long while.  But the first morning we were home from Oin’s wedding, you pulled back the curtain when I finished my shower and announced “Mama!  I go tinkle in the potty!” and you were off!  It took about a week before you could poop too – and you still usually request a treat (lollipop or chocolate) after each success.  I imagine we’ll phase that out once the current bag of lollipops is gone.  You’ve been dry every night but one since you started this too, much to our surprise.  All year we’d been telling you that you weren’t a big boy because you didn’t use the potty.  Well, now you are.  (You’ve been quite vocal about it to anyone who will listen – even complete strangers at the store commenting on your lollipop.)

Speaking of strangers…. You make friends wherever you go.  You’re friendly to everyone, waving and saying “Hi!” as we pass people at the store.  You love to ride in the big part of the cart – or even more to help me push the cart when we’re grocery shopping.  You are my little shopping buddy – when I have to go to the store without you, I’m lonely.

You talk all the time now, narrating your play with your toys.  You still love everything Fireman, but space shuttles, pirates, construction, and dinosaurs are steadily making their way into your world as well – frequently all at the same time.  You’re so sweet, even when you’re playing with your toys – they all say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ for being rescued or flown somewhere in the space shuttle.  You love a baby toy that you call “Puppy” – a Baby Einstein dog with teething feet.  Puppy sleeps with you every night, and you use him to comfort yourself when you’re scared or upset.

It’s very hot here in Las Vegas right now – and you’re loving spending time in Oma and Opa’s pool.  You’re learning the basics of swimming already, you’re quite the kicker in the water with me.  You love to jump to us off the steps in the pool.  We’re going to teach you to swim this summer for sure, either on our own or with lessons.

You’re doing well at school too.  You know your colors and you count to 15, although usually you leave out number 6 or 8.  Your vocabulary is off the charts, and you impress all your teachers (and the directors) at school with how well you speak – beyond your age, they tell us.  You know your first and last name, and your right from your left.  You have trouble following the rules sometimes, especially when you would prefer to run around.  You’re a leader in your class – which can be good and bad, depending on whether you feel like following the rules that day, or leading a parade at circle time.  We think you’re a little bored and mostly a little boy, so we’re not concerned.

You’re curious about everything, asking “Why?” about all that you see.  “Why are you doing that, Mama?” is a question I answer a dozen times a day.  So far it’s not getting old – although I turn it around on you when I run out of answers “Why do you think, sweetie?”  Daddy and I do our best to tell you the truth and explain whatever it is you’re asking about.  We don’t dumb things down for you.

Oh, and speaking of pet names: you don’t like them most of the time.  If we call you “pumpkin” or “sweetie” or even just tell you that you’re handsome, you reply “No!  I not pumpkin!  I just Kieran!  Kieran Gorman!”  Daddy calls you Superman though, and you don’t seem to mind.  I call you Buddy.

You’re growing like a weed, although thankfully not as fast as when you were tiny.  Shirts you wore last summer in Philadelphia (when you went on your first plane ride to visit our friends Peter, Kelly and Kara) are now hanging on as PJs – although they’re almost too small for that even.  You’re wearing 3T pants and 4T shirts.  You’re all torso, but your legs are trying to catch up.  You’re one of the tallest kids in your class, and you tower over your cousin Grant.  You weigh about 34 pounds now.  Heavy enough to make our arms tired, but not too heavy to actually put you down.  You love to be carried still – and I love to put you on my shoulders.  Daddy is too chicken to do that often, but I do it as much as you’ll let me.

I’m not sad to see your birthday this year, Kieran.  There’s no mistaking you for a baby anymore.  You are my little boy now – charging ahead into this big world.  I can’t wait to see every day what you’ll learn.  Seeing the world through your eyes is such a joy.  You are so happy, so loving, so curious.  I can’t wait to see what this next year will bring for us all.  Thank you for holding my hand as you charge along.  Mama loves you, Buddy.

Birthday Boy2