It is hard to believe that our precious baby boy is already three…until you look at him. Then you realize that somewhere in the last year he left babyhood and became a handsome little guy with infinite energy. He is definitely momma’s little boy, but he adores his daddy, too, and anytime you inquire about what he would like to be when he grows up he replies, “A daddy! Just like my Daddy!” He can’t get enough playtime, and he thinks his sister is tops! He is very obstinate and can drive me up a wall with his stubbornness, but he can also melt my heart when he hugs me tightly, kisses my cheek, and says, “I love you everyday, mom!”
When he woke up and we wished him happy birthday, he immediately said, “I’m free (three)!?! And I’m big?! But, I can’t reach anything!?” He had thought that when he woke up in the morning and was three that he would be significantly bigger and able to reach anything he wanted. In fact, as he walked out of the room I saw him attempt to reach the ceiling to no avail. Even once he realized that he had not morphed into a giant he still was quite happy to be three and was wishing us all happy birthday back. He may have thought he had to because his sister was pretty insistent that today was surely her fourth birthday as well as his third. She wasn’t totally focused on herself though. The night before she had told T she had a surprise for him. She came out with several items, which she excitedly told him were some “hand-me-downs for your birthday!” He happily put on and wore to bed some filthy pink flip-flops from his “gift.” It was pretty cute.
We totally celebrated T’s birthday with some African flair. Not African traditions per se, but plenty of evidence that we were in a foreign country for his big day. Let me explain. First of all I began baking his cake the day before. Thankfully there are mixes here, but their directions are in Fahrenheit and my oven is in Celsius. And my internet is too slow to bother looking up the conversion. So, I just “guesstimated” on the temperature. Then, as if I needed anything else working against me in the kitchen, the power goes out in the middle of the cake baking. I contemplate cooking it over the propane burner, but then decide it is better if I just leave it in to “slow cook.” Eventually the power comes back on so it gets this sort of stop and start baking method. Sweet. Sadly, these mishaps still don’t explain why it looks like a giant donut. But the neighbor boys didn't seem to mind.
Then, for his actual birthday the kids and I go to a “theme park” in Nairobi. Theme park is in quotes because we were the only people at this “amusement park” which cost a grand total of $2.00 for the three of us to get in to.
Since we were the only guests they only had one of the bounce castles blown up (a very sad looking crocodile inflatable) which was a nice compliment to the other main attractions, a little tykes plastic play toy with an airplane swing and a closed pool. The amazing thing about this place was how much fun the kids managed to have there. We actually stayed, ate some French fries, and played on these two things for almost three hours! We definitely got our money’s worth!
Then we went next door to Mamba Village. This is a crocodile park which also features ostriches, a giraffe, tortoises, and….rabbits? The crocodiles were ridiculously close and there were hoards of them. The wildest part was the way our guide kept provoking them. The man must have been crazy. He kept sticking a stick in and poking them and they would growl and snap at us through the very thin fence. I can’t tell you how many times we jumped. I also can’t tell you how many times I stopped T from attempting to poke them through the fence with a stick he had found as well. The guide also climbed in the cage at one point to show us something. Thankfully, T did not try that! Another ironic thing was how much the kids enjoyed seeing the caged rabbits and sticking leaves in for them to eat. Forget the giraffe and ostriches – we found bunnies.
Anyhow, the day was quite fun (and not to mention, unique!), and ended with all of the neighborhood boys joining us to sing happy birthday and have some cake with T. Hopefully, this day will have been a memorable one for our sweet boy. I know he surely makes our lives more memorable and wonderful each and every day.