Year in Review
The Monsters have been busy with activities and developing weird habits while on their year-long internet hiatus.
Zaki, the big cupcake, has spent the past year working his charm on his favorite teacher, Ms. Dot. He loves being in her class and by all accounts, they love him too. He is getting ready for the big transition to pre-K, which is a free program here in Georgia and it's structured a lot like kindergarten. He is a little sad about saying "bye" to Ms. Dot, but he is excited about becoming a "big kid" and being in Ms. Brenda and Mr. Woody's class. Over the past year, he has continued his annoying CD/music obsession and has also recently developed a Dr. Seuss fixation, refusing to change out of his Cat in the Hat costume and carrying all his Dr. Seuss books in his Dr. Seuss backpack. [Mommy's Note: Will somebody please get this kid some Luvox??] He is getting big, at about 33 lbs. and 39" tall.
Sameer, the loud, bossy one, has been making great strides in his personal development. He thinks he is a big boy like Zaki, but of course, he still has a ways to go at a little over 20 lbs. and 33" tall. He is not a big cry baby anymore. He is not afraid of cats (he says), but he still does not like dogs. He has also developed other phobias: trains, vacuums, otters, bears, and Nicole from story time. [That probably makes him at least a little cry baby.] He can count to 22 (skipping only 5, 14, 15, and 20) and can say his entire alphabet, including l-m-n-o-p, letters between which a distinction cannot be drawn by most toddlers. Sammy was the earliest Monster to talk, starting his journey to a perfect score on the SAT verbal at just 9 months. [Papa's Note: We actually gave him a practice exam at 20 months, and while he only scored a 580, we are confident he will be hitting 800 by junior high at the latest.] He also is a great singer. Stay tuned to The Fig Leaf for his upcoming music video releases.
Raabi, the big, weird one, has continued to develop his odd habits. He loves to eat weird things: sand, chalk, dirt, crayons, wood - basically, anything inedible. [Mommy's Note: Dr. Loventhal, the Monster pediatrician, probably has a running bet with his nurses about whether or not I will ask about pica.] He also loves water and mud and cannot resist it; this is not such a weird trait for a toddler, but Raabi has elevated getting dirty to an art form. He is a great climber too, which begs the question "Is his uncanny resemblance to Curious George really just a coincidence?" Raabi is the least afraid of anything of the monsters and the toughest. This may have to do with his size in relation to his brothers, weighing in at about 25lbs. and measuring 33" tall. While not giant by the standards of most, he does measure big by Monster standards. Raabi, like Zaki, was a late-bloomer, vocally, but at 2 is quite a babbler, particularly liking to quote from The Foot Book.
Collectively, the Monsters have gained a playroom and bedroom and a "new" backyard, complete with sod and a fence (and Black Widows - pest control suggestions welcome). They have seriously destroyed the house, spilling a gallon of blue wall-paint on the living room carpet and writing on almost every wall in the house, including one of Zaki's first semi-legible autographs on the dining room wall. They have all enjoyed going to the Atlanta Children's Museum, local parks, and story time at the library. Sadly, they lost their au pair Margarita to "Big", a guy from Lithia Springs, in October. [Mommy and Papa's Note: We wish them well with their own little Monster!]* They also miss all their family very much, and pretend-talk to them all the time on the phone. As they get bigger and less whiney in the car, they hope to make some more trips to the N-Y. Until then, they are always up for visitors in the Monster Lair.
*Margarita got married last October and is expecting a baby in August. "Big" is how Sam says "Greg".