Monday, September 14, 2009

Writing about my son

Today I was assigned my first true homework since I don't know how long. My son Denis started 2d grade his year and his teacher assigned us, the parents, to write about their children: "in a million words or less, please write about your child":


Denis is an extraordinary child!

I believe all kids are extraordinary and every parent will tell so but Denis is truly amazing :) He is as brilliant as he is restless, as well-read as he is vibrant, as bright and open-minded as he is active, as lovely as he is challenging, as full of joy as he is full of energy. Denis never hides and his eyes will tell you exactly what he feels that very moment you make the eye contact with him.

Denis was born in Minsk, Belarus which is in Eastern Europe half the way across the globe from U.S. That makes his native language and the language he speaks at home – Russian. His name was picked to serve two purposes: us parents both liking it :) and it being not tied to that only culture so that he doesn’t struggle should we move someplace else. But as we found out later it did come with a little secret. Back where Denis was born this name is pronounced as “Denis” with a soft “d” and an “i” stressed. Here in the states it would have been a girl’s name so he changed to become Dennis (with a hard “d” and an “e” stressed) but with his own unique single “n” in spelling.

Denis has always had dark brown eyes but he used to have curly hairs that straightened as he grew up. And I now think he was born with that wide and inviting smile that I hope will never change.

Our son moved to the states with us 2 years ago and has been here since then until our long trip back home this summer. 6 month into his American life Denis started picking up some English and 12 months into it he was fluent. He did a great job thanks to his inexhaustible desire to socialize and communicate. He does not seem to have fed it well enough yet so one of the things he loves doing the most is talking, especially when he should not be :)

His active lifestyle keeps his legs and elbows black and blue since he learned to walk. Even though Denis is a little clumsy when it comes to playing sports (especially those with balls and rockets) he loves to do it and enjoys the process until it hurts :) He excelled in riding his scooter and enjoys riding his bike. Last year we were able to keep up with him by running on his side but this year he outperformed us and it seems to be a good time to get our own bikes. Another outdoor activity that Denis admires is skiing. Back where he was born we had all 4 seasons with summers hot as they are here and winters cold as they are in Canada so we knew Denis would love it. Denis accompanied us on our first US-time winter vacation to New Hampshire where we all learned to ski. It since then became our family hobby and it remains so filling up all our winter weekends.

Denis loves company and he fades left alone with no friends around for even a day. He does not seem to appreciate how good it is to have a full day to yourself :) Whenever we can’t get him a company we must plan something out and better make it a good variety to burn enough of his energy to secure an uneventful evening.

Last year, when his little sister Alice was born, Denis became a Big Brother and has been sharing his universe with Alice since. Alice and Denis love each other and while he shows her what it means to be a big boy she easily makes him little baby back again when he plays her little toys.

Denis’s great passions are encyclopedias, dinosaurs, star wars, parks, and rivers. Ask him about what he liked the most on our last year trip to California and he will surely name the Muir Woods - red woods park just north from San Francisco...

Denis grows up fast and this is the one and only upsetting thing we can tell about him.