Abey, let’s kick off with you my littlest Doobs / Forest / Doosks. Your contented little footsteps reverberate through our home as you pitter patter from room to room, picking up books, shoes, hats, and most recently, the mop. Your current two real obsessions though are stacking magnatiles into high towers and rapidly flicking through magazines or books.
Your concentration is fierce and you dislike being interrupted or pulled away from what you’re doing. In fact, that’s the only time I really detect frustration from you. All my boys have been solid at playing independently but Abey, you take it to another level – you are an absolute joy to have at home and ask for so little. And when we’re out and about, you’re not shy to accost any male that might be wearing a baseball cap, straddle them and proceed to take their cap on and off their head. Cue me embarrassingly retrieving you – and almost always being told to leave you right where you are.
Meanwhile, you manage to communicate your needs despite not talking (well, you do say “Peppa!” and you are the cutest little creature when you reel off “mama, dada”) and though you failed your speech test for your Two Year Check Up, but I’m confident your language will come soon. We await this next milestone whenever you’re ready. You eat anything, so long as you’re hungry, and you inhale boiled eggs like they’re chocolate eggs. We started potty training you when you were much younger but admittedly, I’ve been a bit lax on this front, although most number twos we do catch! Once you start talking, I think this will also come…
You’re still in your own bedroom Abey where you love nothing more than hanging out, listening to nursery rhymes until you fall asleep, but soon enough we’ll move you into you big brothers’ rooms to be part of the crew – they can’t wait to have you there with them.
Sonny, you live up to your name more and more each day. You might genuinely be the happiest, cuddliest person I know – you run, skip, dance and sing your way through life – and you regularly break our hearts into a thousand pieces. Just the other night, you knocked on my door at about 9pm asking for a cuddle as “we’d not had many today.” Of course I agreed and as we lay there snuggling on our bed, I asked you what the best part of your day had been and on cue, you replied, “right now.”
That said, you’re a sensitive soul in many ways – it took A LOT of persuading to get you to watch SING (best ever movie!) because the opening music worried you – and you’re for sure our fussiest kid when it comes to clothes and food. Socks are “tickly”. clothes are “bunchy”, the end of bananas are “yucky”, but what you lack in sartorial easy -goingness, you make up for in general all round sweetness. You look after Abey, feeding him, dressing him, playing with him and generally looking out for him, whilst your relationship with Jack is truly very special. I often marvel to Sam how you two still find so much to talk about. You are a proper team, best friends through and through.
You’ve properly quit your dummy (you adored it), though you still go to sleep every night cuddling your sheep (well, two sheep actually). You love school and homeschool in equal measures – you being voted class counsellor by your class mates was one of my proudest moments – and although you found returning to school post lockdown a bit tricky, soon enough you were running in again every morning and even bagged yourself an invite to the headteachers’ office on the last day of term for ice cream on account of being the best behaved all year (I think! It’s hard to deduce these things sometimes….!). I guess your big news is that you have discovered reading and writing – and it is slightly rocking your world. You go to sleep writing in your own “secret booc” and proudly show us your entries the next morning which are undoubtedly the best thing I’ll read all day. Never, ever change sweet Sonny.
Jack, you are most definitely our most intense child, in all the most wonderful and all the most frustrating ways. Your passion for life shines through in everything you do – which at the moment seems to be mainly football, cricket – playing and watching it – listening to Wow in the World, burying yourself in Nat Geo, The Week Junior and Whizz Pop Bang, and so much more. You are hugely protective of Sonny and your favourite pastime of all is playing sport with him in the garden – though you’ll also be the first to wallop him if he’s bothering you in some way and if you do come to me to moan about him, you know that I’ll always say the same: “don’t tell me, tell him.”
You spend hours and hours perfecting your kick and practising your bowling, and your determination to improve is so inspiring. For example, you used to be pretty hopeless at football, but you’ve just been picked for the local team and you have improved so freakin’ much it’s incredible. Your competitive streak is strong, and we talk and talk about how to stay calm in those moments when things don’t always go our way.
I’m so excited about our roadtrip this Summer (fingers crossed) to watch you try out some of the Spanish you’ve been learning on Duo Lingo. I think you’ll be in your element; meeting new people and learning about different cultures. I’ve no doubt you’ll be noting down all the new words you learn and I’ll watch you proudly telling your teachers back at school in September. I’ll always, always have your back and I just can’t wait to see the next steps you’ll take in life Jacky boy.
My three boys; take care of each other, and you will fly. Thank you for choosing me and your dad to take care of you.