Letter to Camille: Forty-Three Months

Forty-Three MonthsHello sweet love, and Happy Forty-Three Month Birthday (plus one day). Right now you’re sitting beside me on the couch watching the movie Wall-E for the 4 millionth time. Thank goodness I love this movie too! That silly Wall-E robot is a very lovable guy, and he has completely stolen your heart.

We were at a toy store recently when you spotted a Wall-E toy, and you nearly fell over with joy and longing. You’re usually pretty good in stores about putting toys back on the shelf and not getting upset when you can’t have them, but it was clear this would be an exception. So we got him, and you two have been nearly inseparable since. This isn’t the best photo, but to prove my point, here you are at the playground last weekend, sliding with Wall-E in your lap.

On the SlideYou even requested that I paint him on your face, so I gave it a go.

Wall-EThis Wall-E mania hasn’t dampened your affection for dinosaurs though, which are still very high on your list of favorite things. Nearly every day we play Dinosaur school, with Mrs. Parasaurolophus presiding over class while all the baby dinos gather in a circle to learn about herbivores, carnivores and the like. Now that we’ve had a few warmer, sunnier days, your dinos have even been taking field trips to the backyard.

Playing Dinos with DaddyYour all-time favorite dinosaur is still probably Sue, the T-Rex we saw at the Field Museum in Chicago. For Christmas, Boo got you a shirt from the museum with Sue on it. The shirt is still a bit too big, but the other day we let you wear it anyway, and you LOVED it. Now you request to wear it all the time. The other morning, about 5 a.m., you started moaning and crying quietly in your bed, occasionally calling for me. Finally, at 5:30 I went to see what was up. “Mama,” you cried, “I miss my Sue shirt!”

Dinos in the GrassLast night you had an exciting first – the first slumber party in your own room! Nikki, Andrew, Nia and Nate came to visit, and you finally had a friend in the top bunk. Nia slept in your room all night, and you two did pretty well. I think it’s great (and adorable) that you still expect the rules to be followed even during sleepovers. This morning at 6:30, despite the fact that you’d been singing to yourself for a while, I was amused to hear you say, “Nia! Go back to sleep – it’s not 7 yet!” It was great watching you kids play – we sure do miss our buddies when they’re gone.

This month you have become firmly entrenched in the “why” phase. Most of the time I think you’re being truly inquisitive, but the question can still be frustrating because you want me to explain everything down to the smallest detail. And sometimes I come up short. For example, you were playing with your alphabet refrigerator magnets the other day and we spelled the word “Tiny.” Then you added another “Y” to the end of the word and asked, “Mama, what does that spell?”

“Nothing,” I said. “Tiny only has one ‘y.'”

“Why doesn’t it spell anything?” you asked.

“It just doesn’t.”

“But why?”

Can’t help you there kiddo. Later, we were talking about pool water and how it’s not good for drinking. “Why?” you asked.

“Because it has chemicals that are good for the water but not good for our tummies,” I said, thinking that was a fairly straightforward explanation.

“What’s a chemical?” you then asked. How do I explain a chemical to you at age 3?

Silly Dress-Up TimeDespite all of your questioning, there are still so many things about which you are happily unaware. Guns would fall into this category. The other day at Monkey Joe’s, you picked up one of the guns that is used to play an arcade game. At first I was annoyed and was about to ask you to put it away when I realized your intentions were innocent. You were using the gun to gas up the arcade cars, because to you it resembled the nozzle at the gas tank. Here’s a quick video clip I recorded on my phone:

Our night-time reading routine has advanced in recent weeks, and I’m proud to say we’ve moved on to chapter books. The first chapter book you really seemed to enjoy was a collection of the old Winne-the-Pooh stories. The book was actually a gift I gave to your Daddy when we were dating, and I love reading the stories to you before bedtime. On our last visit to the library, you weren’t interested in checking out any short books. Instead, we got The Swamp Monster and Silverwing, both chapter books with few or no pictures. I’m so happy you enjoy reading as much as we do, and your Daddy and I are both having fun digging in to these new books with you.

One recent bedtime routine was livened up by a serious case of the sillies. I love this video because your deep belly laughs make me smile every time.

Your language skills continue to grow, and your vocabulary now also includes words you made up yourself. I’m not sure where these words came from, but you’re certain they’re real. One is “requitement.” You’ve used it in several different contexts, but the only insight we’ve gotten into its meaning was when you said you were building a “requitement stand, a place where you tell the truth.” Could this be some legal term used in courtrooms of which I’m not aware?

Another favorite is “rankfully.” One might think it would be a negative word, but it is quite the opposite. You use it to indicate you feel something strongly, as in, “I love you rankfully much,” or “this cookie is rankfully good.”

Well Camille, I can tell you this. I’d be happy to get on your requitement stand and tell you truthfully t
hat I love you rankfully, rankfully much. Thanks for another great month, my love.


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