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When I started writing this blog last year, I decided to name it in honour of my son – affectionately known as the Pok. Well this last week he turned three. And what a whirlwind three years it has been for us. We are so happy to have a healthy, cheeky boy who is full of energy and cunning (though he hasn’t figured out how not to get caught). The terrible twos were not really terrible, and now we are challenged with a little member of the family who is smarter than we give him credit for and he knows what he wants.

Regardless, we didn’t have have the opportunity to celebrate his birthday with family and friends last year so this year we decided to put on a ‘do’. His birthday proper was a few days before the party, and this was the first time he realised that it was a special day. When he woke up he was greeted to presents. One of the presents was ‘requested’ by him – “Daddy, for my birthday I want overhead railway tracks”. These are the wooden rails for the toy trains from Thomas the Tank Engine and Chuggington. Easily pleased. We threw in a few other ‘vehicles’ – some toy planes from the new Disney movie “Planes”. To say he was overwhelmed and happy would be an understatement.

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When he finally came downstairs to eat breakfast he got the chance to open up other presents flown in from the UK from his Grandparents. Happier boy… and for the record it was a special delivery of more trains

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To rev him up for his party, as he was still figuring out what this would all mean, the Mother of the Pok (my wife) got him involved in the food preparation exercise. One of the things he loves doing with his Mum is cooking and it gives me great joy watching him share one of my wife’s passions. He got to assist in making the cake, and it was not a bad effort on my wife’s part.

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We held his party at the hall next to the children’s bike riding venue that I have blogged about previously. We didn’t have any games planned other than “Kids bring your bikes and scooters!” And the kids (via their parents) obliged. They zoomed off in all directions and generally caused chaos. It was great! And a couple of his friends (who had just turned three themselves) brought their new bikes to get rolling too.

Cutting the cake was the topping off of a great kid’s party. We haven’t seen too many times where the Pok was happy and humbled at the same time. This was the first time that he realised that the one day of the year that was all about him was his birthday.

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We are blessed to have a happy and healthy boy who brings us so much happiness. Now it is our job as parent’s to raise him with the understanding of how fortunate he is and that he doesn’t squander the opportunity that he has, and a lot of other children don’t.

No, we have not been blessed with a second child.

But we now have a fish! This last week I celebrated my birthday and my son, The Pok, decided that I needed a pet as my present. He tried to convince my wife that his Daddy needed a dog. Fortunately my wife does not think impractically like a 2 year old, and proceeded to convince him that it may be easier to take care of a fish.

Please welcome “Marlin” the Siamese Fighting Fish!

Marlin_the_Fish

He is only small at no more than 5cm in length (including his tail fins), but he is a beautiful shimmering orange with deep vibrant red fins. They are quite elegant when he spreads them to look like multiple fans of red spikes. The little guy has quite a personality too, and he kicks up a bit when we go to say hello to him. The Pok now has another daily task to add to his morning routine of feeding our fish. When I asked The Pok what his name was, he thought carefully and after a brief few seconds he shouted “Marlin!”

But Daddy, Marlin doesn’t Talk

The day after we got him, I picked up The Pok from day care and the first thing we both wanted to do when we returned home was to say hello to Marlin. As we gazed at his fish tank and spoke to him, Marlin stared back and opened his mouth. But it was confusing for The Pok that he didn’t talk back to us. He was moving his mouth, but no words were coming out.

Then it dawned on me that in my son’s world, everyone talks back. The trains talk in Thomas the Tank Engine and Chuggington, the cars talk in Disney’s Cars, the tools talk in Handy Manny, and the animals talk in Tinga Tinga Tales and Babar. Of course you have Mickey Mouse and his Clubhouse friends who are all chatterboxes too. Even when he plays with his toys, he emulates the conversations that he watches on the television shows and now makes up his own. When we go to a store and he sees a train or car without eyes The Pok says “Daddy, that car doesn’t have a face.”

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So you can imagine his disappointment when he turned around and said to me “Daddy, Marlin isn’t talking.” I provided some Daddy logic that only works on young minds and told him “That’s because Marlin lives underwater, and when you go swimming you can’t talk underwater.” The Pok was happy with that, for now, but no doubt he won’t be fooled for long.

Regardless, both The Pok and his Daddy love very much the new addition to our house. And it is never a dull moment figuring out the machinations of my son’s mind.

 

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