Today was dress up day at school for the middle and the youngest muppet. The theme was Fantasy so they were looking for princesses, fairies, knights, ogres and princess. When I received the notice in the boys cubbies on Tuesday afternoon I thought well now it would be great if I had a girl!
Little girls closets are full of dress up clothes, tiaras, fairy wings and glass slippers. One of our friends daughters got enough princess dresses for her second birthday to clothe a small village and I thought what fun! The boys have spiderman, batman, power rangers and superman…. these people don’t want to come to tea parties and eat cake these people want to kick some bad guy butt! Before six o’clock this morning they had all put on super hero costumes and saved the world about three times!
I figured that if I made the middle muppet and the younger one swords they would go along with my idea for them to be knights for dress up day at school. I made them swords, crowns and tunics with a dinosaur painted on it to sweeten the deal and they loved it!
We arrived at school to little girls is frilly pink dresses and glitter everywhere running around the school yard. At his classroom the youngest muppet was greeted by his little friends and his teacher bowed to him. He was happy to be king of the class and quickly ran off to slay his friend who was dressed as a dinosaur all the fairies and princesses were happy to have a knight in their midst.
As I walked the middle muppet to his class we saw his little friend who was dressed as Batman walking up the steps. His mother told me that she didn’t know what to dress him as today, her daughter dresses like a princess everyday so she was easy but he would only wear the batman costume. I told her not to worry and that I was pretty sure all the boys would be dressed in super hero costumes. We turned the corner in to the class and saw that I was right. There were Jedi knights, Spidermans, a Bambi, Teletubbies and Michael Jackson! The middle muppet was greeted by his usual crowd and after showing off his sword for a few seconds he joined MJ and started building a tower out of blocks.
It was pretty cute watching all of them play pretend in their costumes, acting like the characters they were dressed as. I guess I am just going to have to teach my little super heros how to have a tea party 😉
There was a new baby born in our compound in the last week or so and today we saw the two new big brothers and their new baby sister at the playground.
I was excited and told the boys to look at the new baby sister that their friends had, well the oldest muppet did not even acknowledge the little bundle and continued playing in the sand with all of his friends. The middle muppet cooed over how sweet she was and commented on how small and tiny her toes and hands are. “Where are her running shoes?” he asked me, “When will she be able to walk?” I explained to him that she was only a week old and she wouldn’t be walking anytime soon. Seeing that there was not going to be anymore entertainment from this child he ran off to play with his older brother.
The youngest muppet was fascinated by the little baby. He cuddled up on my lap and watched her sleeping in her pram for about ten minutes. After a while he said to me “Mama I wanna be a baby like dat, I wanna sleep in dare like dat baby.” I curled him up in my arms and rocked him back and forth for a few minutes I told him that he was always going to be my baby no matter how big he was. When he was all done cuddling he gave me a kiss and went off to play with his little friends.
One of the Filipino ladies at the park saw me admiring the sweet little girl and told to me if you have 3 boys and then you have a girl in the Philippines then you are considered to be very lucky. “You should have another baby” she said to me with a smile “I am sure it would be a girl” I told her that I was already very lucky to have three boys and wouldn’t be pushing my luck any further. I will be the only princess in this castle.
When we first moved to Doha the boys were going through a phase where everything had to be the same. They all had to have the cups, the same coloured shirts and the same colour of plate at breakfast, lunch and dinner. I actually made a friend of mine go to Ikea in Dubai and get me more plates just so I had three of the same to avoid the fights at every meal time.
At Christmas time Santa had to bring all three muppets the exact same presents, everything under the tree was multiplied by three! I had always said that I would never buy three of the same thing and that my children would just have to learn to share and take turns but honestly my sanity could not handle it!
Now that they are a little bit older there isn’t this insane need to be same, same. They are all developing different interests and can interact with each other with out all having to be batman. They pretend to be different characters and will join in the fun playing with different toys. When it comes time to spend allowance they each pick out something different and I no longer have three of everything in my house.
The muppets are learning to think for them selves and forming their own opinions, the future is going to be very interesting in our household.
We did our regular park trip after school today. The middle muppet insisted on taking his scooter to the playground today and was quite content to just ride around the path in circles while the other kids played. After about lap 68 I started talking to another mother who was there with her kids. It took me longer then it should have to realize that he had crashed and burned on the other side of the park, but the littlest muppet had heard right away.
Since him and the middle muppet have come to a truce lately and are best friends the youngest has developed a sixth sense of sorts to tell when the middle guy is in trouble. I watched as the youngest dropped what he was doing and rush over to make sure the middle guy was ok. Once he saw there was no blood he grabbed his hand and helped him up, gave him a hug and said “You ok Yder.”
It was a proud mama moment for me and the other mother was thoroughly impressed and wanted to know all my parenting secrets. Little does she know that I am just winging it!
The Middle Muppet with the young girls of the Maasia family we visited in Tanzania
I make the older two muppets get themselves dressed everyday. It is a challenge for the middle muppet mostly because he gets frustrated easily and acts as though I am putting him through torture by asking to get his shirt on. This morning, he got dressed with out a fight and came in to the bathroom for me to spike his hair. “You have your shirt on backwards” I said to him. “I know Mom” he replied “I am Swahili and they wear their shirts backwards and their underwear also.” I decided not to argue with him since this was the same child that told me when we were in Africa that he used to be a Maasai when he was a baby.
Living in Doha the two most common question you are are asked when meeting someone is Where are you from? and How long have you been here? The muppets are immersed in a country of such diverse culture and yet I wonder if am doing a good enough job making them aware of their own.
The oldest muppet has friends from all over the world in his class, one of his best friends is a local boy and on days when he hangs out with him the oldest comes home with a million questions about mosques and an accent! The middle muppet doesn’t think it is fair that one friend of ours gets to celebrate so many holidays. His dad is Egyptian and his mother Canadian so naturally they celebrate both Western and Muslim holidays, middle muppet doesn’t like the fact that he doesn’t get twice the presents! We were invited by our Greek friends to celebrate their sons “Name Day” which was like going to a birthday party, I explained to the oldest muppet that his name was Welsh and he didn’t have a name day. He felt completely ripped off and walked off muttering something about wishing he was Greek.
The one great thing about the kids going to an international school is they really get to see just how many different people there are out there from such different backgrounds and countries. The oldest muppet got to participate in International Week celebrations this year where every country that is in attendance at the school is represented. There is an honour place on the oldest and youngest from each country, they get to carry their countries flag through the gymnasium. You can see the rush of pride on each child’s face as their countries flag passes by.
I love that the boys are so keen to learn about other cultures and as we prepare once again to head home for the summer I am excited to show the kids the beauty of Canada and remind them of what an amazing country we are from.