In dog years, you'd be 42

Happy Birthday, Critter

Today is your 6th birthday. I'd like you to tell me how the heck that happened so fast. It wasn't long ago that you were still interested in little girl things, like princesses and flowers and the color pink. Actually the color pink thing went beyond an interest to the level of unhealthy obsession. You were convinced that not only was pink your favorite color, but that you by rights owned the concept of the color "pink". No one else was allowed to like pink, and we were in negotiations with Johnny Cochran to sue Crayola for putting pink crayons in boxes for sale to the general public. If we told you that the little girl next door's favorite color was also pink, you'd have thought from your reaction that we had just told you that I was planning to stab Santa Claus in the eye with a turkey fork.

These days, however, your interests are changing and evolving at a blinding speed, which is making it fairly difficult to keep up and maintain the necessary facade of interest that shows we are parents devoted to participating with you in all of your passions. Your interest in TV shows has gone from shows you now call "baby-ish" like Rolie Polie Olie and Bear in the Big Blue House to Scooby Doo and, most recently, a TV network called "Pop Girl" which features music videos and Japanese anime. It warms the cockles of my heart to know that you instinctively seem to loathe Scrappy Doo with every fiber of your being, just as I do, and I can't wait to introduce you to Starblazers. The fact that your mother and I share a love of that show has a lot to do with the reasons I married her.

In addition, your vocabulary and your reading ability has come on leaps and bounds recently. This morning you asked me to pass you your Birthday Girl "rosette". Rosette. Who talks like that?

You've also got a voracious appetite for books (thank God), and often fall asleep with a pile of 20 or more books on your bed, which you insist you must have, in case you can't decide which to read next. I can't tell you the number of times I've been woken in the middle of the night by a cascade of books crashing to the floor in your room, because you've fallen asleep sprawled across open copies of "The Worst Witch", "Paddington Bear: The Revenge" and any of the three and a half thousand "Rainbow Fairy" books you have.

You're also clearly a foodie, even now. Most of the time when I'm standing in the kitchen cooking and you walk in, you shout out "I want a piece!" and then after you've grabbed a slice/chunk/spoonful and it's on its way towards your mouth, you think to ask, "what is it?"

This is so very different from how I remember being at your age that I can only stand in awe at your bravery. I'd have said that the fact that you were willing to try durian when even your mother turned her nose up sets you apart from nearly every other 6 year old I know. After having tried durian myself, I'd say it set you apart from nearly every other adult I know.

The most amazing thing, however, has been how good a big sister you've proven to be. Now that your your little brother has become fully mobile, he's finding ways to grab, crumple, drool on or other wise try and destroy anything of yours he can get his hands on, and you haven't tried to throttle him even once, to my knowledge. In fact, there's no one else that can make him laugh or light up the way he does when he sees you. It's pretty clear that he already idolizes his big sister.

But that's really no surprise. I think you're a pretty cool cat, myself. Keep doing what you're doing, kiddo.