As far as Adiv's birthday celebrations go, it's been a month-long, ongoing event. Christmas, a big wedding, an early-party, numerous home made cakes topped with three candles, and an unending supply of toys have led the little guy into believing in birth months and not birth days.
First my parents came armed with the customary packet filled with presents. Then there was a Christmas party, where he dragged home a big bag filled with presents. Then, there was the excitement of welcoming my brother who made his annual appearance. An indulgent uncle, he pampered Adiv with more toys. Then we visited the extended family in Kerala, during a wedding. When we got back to Bangalore, we were planning his birthday. Adiv wanted the balloons and the streamers, and he practiced his thank you speeches even before the presents made an appearance. Rohit ordered the food, and my father took on the responsibility of decorating the house. Meanwhile, I began thinking about the cake I wanted to make. Despite being told it would be easier to buy that perfect looking cake, I was determined to bake one. So when Adiv announced that he wanted Spider Man, Ro and I decided to try and make a Spidey cake.
This entire process was fun, because Adiv sat through it all. He helped me bake the cake (sifting the flour is quite a task for a three-year-old-to-be) and helped us mix colors for the icing. Once the coconut loaf cake was ready (a success), I got the base ready by pouring royal icing on top of the cake. On top of that, Rohit carefully drew Spidey's eyes. We did an excited jig because the eyes were perfect. Then in turns, we finished the rest of the icing. We were proud parents, and to celebrate our success, I licked the remnants of the icing. Adiv who was up, clapping and bouncing, wept buckets when my lips, tongue and teeth turned a nightmarish purple.
"Mimi became monster", he wept tragically, while I furiously brushed my teeth to get rid of all the coloring!
The birthday was a sucess. The biriyani and phirni were great. The cake was tasty and Adiv loved it. The family came to sing to him, and he graciously accepted all his presents with obvious excitement.
Since then he's been cutting several cakes each week. We came to Chennai to spend time with my brother and see him off, and my mom has been baking regularly since then. Every cake came with three candles that he blew out, while we sang loudly to him. Truly an exciting month for him.
So, as is obvious the year has begun well for him. As it progresses I hope and pray, it will be as good and exciting. I hope he continues to be surrounded by people who love him. I hope he appreciates family, not taking anyone for granted. I hope he values all his blessings, and grows into a good human being.
2010 ended well for him. He discovered love, not once but twice. First came the pretty young thing in pink, who played haughty, but eventually succumbed to his charms. Though she ignored him initially, she was soon seeing him off after school. He played cool, picking his clothes, insisting on belts and matching pairs of socks. He even refused to let me walk him to the door of his school. "You wait outside", he said quietly. He was letting his lady love think that he was driving to school on his own.
Then came pretty young girl in pink (2). "She is very pretty" he gushed. "She wears pink lipstick", he added, commenting on her pink lips! Unfortunately she didn't fall for his wooing, as he'd changed his technique. He was showing her his tongue and teeth, after all wasn't that what the chimp told George (of "George of the Jungle") to do? He also made new friends with whom he exchanged tales of dried cranberries (!) and dinosaurs. He met cousins he hadn't seen in a while, and discovered that boys play games that are more fun. He learned to pedal his bike and sweetly ask for a bigger one (we're getting him one). He thinks the pizza man has the "coolest" job in the world, because he wears a cap and drives a bike. He thinks I have all the answers (I'm enjoying that status now), and that Rohit is the strongest man alive. (I've tutored him to say, "I get my muscles from Dada and my brains from Mimi"). He likes to dress up like "Wake up Sid" (Ranbir Kapoor), and has developed a fascination for Micheal Jackson. He loves his teacher and school, and has now begun demanding sandwiches and burgers that have faces.
As parents it's been an exciting year for us as well. We now have a little boy with a vivid imagination. In addition to cars and guns, we have a little man who loves to cook inside his tent. He enjoys playing magic dungeon under a blanket, where we are magically transported to magical lands (birthdays, balloons, icecreams) where only rabbits play hosts. He never tires of hearing the story of "Hansel and Gretel", and loves having people over. If he can amaze me with his social skills, he can even exasperate me with his jealous rage when we give other little kids as much attention. After an peaceful 2010, we now look forward to an exciting 2011.