Happy 3rd birthday!
Now, as usual, I could trip the light saptastic, wax poetic about how much I love you, and gush how, over the past three years, you've changed my life in ways that I never could have fathomed. I could tell you about the tears and joys you've brought to our lives. Or I could try to explain how the journey of fatherhood has been one of my life's most exciting adventures.
Instead, I think I'll just tell you how cool and weird and wonderful you are. THREE is such a fantastic age and when I look back at these times, these are a few of the things I'll want to remember about you now:
- You love dressing yourself in these awesomely bad ensembles. Denim shorts, yellow wellies, love beads, and Hello Kitty sunglasses. Polo shirt dress, combat boots, rainbow tights, and a Mets hat. Seriously, you're like the illegitimate love child of Betsy Johnson and Helen Keller. If you ever become an avant-garde fashion designer, we'll know where it all started.
- Almost every day, you come up to us and ask, "are you happy, guys?" It's ridiculously cute. You're like the tiniest little Jungian therapist in Manhattan.
- Since the only television you're allowed to watch are old musicals, you're prone to break out into show tunes at any given moment. You can't count past 10 but somehow you know every single word of "So Long, Farewell" Last night, you stood on your chair at the restaurant and started singing "The Sun Will Come Out TOMORROW!" Sometimes, I feel like we're living with Bette Midler or Ethel Merman.
- Like your mother, you absolutely hate eating fruits or vegetables. If you ever get scurvy, I'm totally blaming your mom.
- However, if you ever start going around and farting in people's faces, I'll accept full responsibility. I've been doing this to you since you were a baby and we both still think it's the absolute funniest thing in the known universe.
- You are definitely my mother's granddaughter in the sense that you are unfailingly polite. I'm not saying you're an angel but you are definitely the best-mannered little kid I've ever seen. For the most part, you're pretty good at saying "please" and "thank you." When we go to a restaurant, one of the first things you do is fold the napkin on your lap. And you always say, "Bless you" whenever someone sneezes. Sadly, I know a lot of adults who don't do any of those things. Keep it up, kiddo.
- Lately, you've been picking up on all the little catchphrases that mommy and I unconsciously say in daily conversation. It's freaking hysterical when you come up to us and say things like: "You kids ready yet?"; "I'm going to the office. Bye!"; and our all-time favorite, "You guys want to hear something CRAZY?"
- Every morning, you climb into bed with us after you wake up. With your mother, you lovingly curl up beside her to snuggle. Often, you'll brush her hair gently or kiss her softly on the cheek. But me, you haze like a fraternity pledge. You jam your fingers up my nose, shine the book light in my face, and pry my eyelids open with your fingers. Last week, I woke up completely covered in moisturizer because you wanted to "put medicine on my boo boo."
- One of your favorite new activities is riding on the back of my bicycle as we take long weekend rides up the Hudson River. The whole time we're riding, you'll be chattering in my ear non-stop. I love these precious moments and often wish I could capture them in a bottle.
- You've just recently made the transition out of diapers and you couldn't be prouder. In fact, you're so proud that whenever you see our friends, you immediately pull down your shorts or lift your dress up, and yell, "Look at my big girl underwear, everyone!" It's awkwardly hilarious. Let's hope it ends soon.
- Already, at age three, you're a true New York foodie. Last week, you grabbed the newspaper, pretended it was a take-out menu, and said, "Daddy, what do you want to order?" Whenever the intercom buzzes, you automatically yell, "Dinner's ready!" And you've got an incredibly adventurous palate for a toddler. You've roamed many of the great ethnic restaurants here, stuffing your little belly with pho ga, tikka masala, agedashi tofu, and chicken tagine along the entire way.
Peanut...this is just a small sample of all the things that make THREE the best age in the world. You're an incredibly warm and caring little girl. It sounds so patently absurd to say that I'm so proud of who and what you've become in your first three years on this planet. But it's true. I can't wait to see what the future holds for you.
Happy 3rd birthday, little girl!
Clap your hands and say yeah if you're THREE!