My dearest little boy,

You are three years old. Three and thriving.

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You’re tall for your age, and very strong too. You love to use your body to climb, bounce and run, and especially to dance. In fact, I think dancing is an almost involuntary response to music for you. Songs start playing, and you start moving. You love to play music too. Among your favourite playthings are your ukulele and your tambourine. You’ve also got an excellent memory for lyrics, and love to sing along to your favourite songs in the car, or when we’re watching music videos on tv.

 

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In the last few weeks you’ve been getting the hang of using the toilet, and now declare “only nappies for sleeps!” every time we get you out of bed. Your mummy was the one who got you started on this new skill and you’re doing a great job of consolidating it. I’m really glad you’re taking this big step towards independence, and pleased that you’re learning a new way to feel in control of your own body.

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You’re very verbal for your age, and absolutely love a chat. Your Mummy and I are immensely proud of how good you are at expressing yourself, and particularly at how adept you are at talking about your feelings. You’re able to tell us if you feel sad, frustrated, shy, disappointed, happy, or even “foo-ri-us”. We hope that this is a skill that you’ll carry with you through your childhood and into adulthood.

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You are a very tender and affectionate little person. You give love spontaneously and generously. When you stop what you’re doing to come and give me a big cuddle, or a little storm of kisses, I sometimes think my heart will explode with love for you. You hate to see anyone you care about feeling sad, and often burst into tears yourself if one of your friends is crying. You always do whatever you can to help them feel better, from sharing a toy, to giving a companionable pat on the arm. Your empathy makes you a very good friend.

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Babies and smaller children are very interesting to you at the moment, and you can be a sweet and gentle playmate to them. You’re particularly fond of your little mate Harvey (two years your junior), who you share with, chat to, and play silly games with. You like to teach him how to do big boy things, like play with the train table, and you carefully shepherd him away from anything you consider to be dangerous for him. Seeing you do this makes me certain that you will make an amazing big brother when the time comes.

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Numbers fascinate you. We’ve spent a lot of time this year loitering outside people’s houses while you read the numbers on their letterboxes and number plates. You see numbers everywhere – just this morning you made a squiggle with a roller in your Play Doh, and immediately read it as a “5”, which is precisely what it looked like. At this rate, your numeracy skills will exceed mine by your next birthday.

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You are an immensely determined and strong willed little person, and I am made both proud and exasperated by this. Getting you to try something new can feel like one of Hercules’ labours, but watching you tenaciously work at solving a problem is an indescribable joy. This inner strength is going to get you places, but I hope we can also teach you the value of the occasional compromise too.

 

As it’s now a bit of a tradition, here are a few of your favourite things at three:

 

Books

 

Food and drink

  • Porridge
  • Weet bix
  • “Yellow Cake” (a passionfruit and poppy seed cake that is served at our local cafe – you love it so much that they’ve started calling it “Arty cake”)
  • Corn
  • Ravioli (or “pasta parcels”)
  • Smoothies
  • Chocolate
  • Marshmallows
  • Peanut butter sandwiches
  • Chicken nuggets (especially Mummy’s home made ones)

 

Games

  • Shopkeepers
  • Play Doh
  • Building cubbies
  • Dancing
  • Doing puzzles
  • Crow Game

 

Music

  • Hozier
  • Taylor Swift
  • Darren Hanlon
  • Walk Off The Earth
  • Kate Rusby
  • The Decemberisits
  • Ok Go (mainly for their videos)
  • Martha Wainwright

 

Toys

  • Your bun buns
  • The train table, and all associated trains
  • All your musical instruments
  • Play Doh
  • iPads
  • All your cooking and cafe related toys
  • Your new dolls house

 

TV shows and movies

  • Sarah and Duck
  • Abney and Teal
  • Peppa Pig
  • Sesame Street
  • Play School
  • Shaun the Sheep
  • Octonauts
  • Finding Nemo
  • The Aristocats

 

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Thank you for being the daily delight you are to us, my beautiful, boy. You are a unique and magnificent little human, and I couldn’t be prouder to be,

Your Mama xxx