To My Son on His 5th Birthday

by Abby on February 28, 2014

Riley at the Lego storeDear Riley,

Congratulations on turning 5! This year, your birthday was all about ninjas, Legos, and Star Wars. Any toy that comes with a little guy and some sort of sword or lightsaber or rocket-launcher is your kind of toy. You are way more into Legos and action figures than your big brother ever was, and you can spend hours – OK, long minutes – on the floor building elaborate towers and machines for the little Lego guys to play with.

More on your likes and dislikes. Likes: swimming, drawing, mac and cheese, AFV, Boo the dog, playing Just Dance on the Wii, running around barefoot, telling long, complicated tall tales about things that may or may not have happened at school. I’m skeptical about the volcanoes. But two maintenance guys busting down the locked bathroom door with a crow bar to get you out? That, unfortunately, was all too true.

Dislikes: haircuts, hair brushing, wearing outerwear, wearing underwear, wearing dress-up clothes, wearing jeans, or in fact any pants besides “soft pants.” I’m sorry to say that we had a heated argument yesterday about wearing your birthday shirt to school. My thinking is, if you HAVE a birthday shirt, it makes sense to wear it on the ONE day of the year it’s your actual birthday. You disagreed. Strenuously. You also really, really disliked sledding this year.

Sledding sucks!You’re still that strong-willed little boy we once called “bipolar baby” (apologies to the mental health community). You can be happy and laughing one minute, and thrashing around on the floor in a rage the next minute. But you can also be very sweet and sensitive, too. You’re very affectionate, and I am constantly in awe of your ability to remember little details about everything and everyone – like how your cousin is allergic to red food coloring, or that a classmate likes a certain toy, or that Daddy’s baseball cap is in a particular spot. You’re good at keeping track of things, getting yourself ready, and putting things back where they belong. Unlike SOME people we live with.

At school, your teachers tell me you are a leader, very social, responsible, no sign of the hot-blooded little boy we see at home. I find this surprising, but also impressive. Just like your drawing and writing, which gets better and better by the day. You’re totally ready to start kindergarten next fall. My baby boy is growing up! What a joy it is to be a part of it and have you in my life.

– Your loving mama

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Sarah March 2, 2014 at 7:46 am

Happy birthday Riley! Graham just turned five in February. Hard to believe the passage of time. He seems like such a funny guy. And I’m very impressed he cleans up!


Abby March 2, 2014 at 7:43 pm

Thanks, Sarah! Happy Birthday to Graham, too! Yes, time sure does fly…


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