(Self) Examination Becks Kao Ben Kao Family life as we know it Milestones and growing up Nat Kao Parenting 101 The Kao Kids What to Expect... As a Mother

Parenting at 5, 3-half and 2 (Part I)

March 6, 2014

Last month, my sons turned a year older and I’m officially doing this mothering gig with my three kids who are 5, 3.5 and 2.

This means that change is here again.

The 5-year-old is clearly growing up fast and probably has a vocabulary of close to two thousand words. He’s playful still but not as cheekily innocent as he was a few years ago. He’s now got an emo streak and pensive moods, and have been showing signs of being easily hurt and offended. He’s learned the art of argumentation, and has also picked up the skill of being acidulous and sarcastic (why, why, I’m sure he also learned from the best). He has the ability to give you a million and one reasons (and then some more if you allow him to) why he can or cannot do something, something as simple as why he can’t come immediately to brush his teeth or empty his bladder, and would do almost anything from pouting to demonstrating aggression to win an argument. He can fire questions at you fast and furious and has about more than a gazillion ‘whys’ in his head every single day.

Not a day passes without him asking at least 50 questions, giving you a ton of useless reasons as excuses why something happened which is not his fault, and a show of emo-ing, complete with tears and sulking at corners of the house. He learns things fast but is also very selective in what he wants to learn. He’ll cite poor memory as his excuse for not remembering how to spell words you teach him but he can remember every single character in all his favourite TV programmes. He’s an energiser bunny who’s waiting every day to muck around, asking, “What can I do? What can we do?” and looking for someone to play with him.

Ben at 5

On good days, he goes a little wild and says the darndest but most intelligent things that can make you laugh so hard and wonder if you’re with a 5-year-old or 15. He can also have very intense conversations with you, and we have had days of talking about God, heaven, life and the meaning of it all.

On good days, he’s also a wonderful big brother to his siblings and acts with a mature sense of sensibility.


The little girl is a July baby so she only turns 4 in 4 months. Although the terrible Terrible Twos which we’ve experienced with her is finally, finally over, we do get the tantrums once in a while especially whenever she’s tired or in discomfort, though the tantrums have evolved to be more muted and controlled. I’m happy to say that Becks is now able to exercise a lot more self control at this age.


She’s also at a phase of being really eager to differentiate herself from her siblings. I’m not sure if it comes with being the middle child but she’s demonstrating to us clearly every day that she wants to be different, and to be seen as different. In the past, she would join the games and rough play, and play with much abandonment with them. Lately, she wants to read about the Disney princesses and play with dolls. She’s been asking if I could buy her a Barbie or a princess doll. She would drag her brothers to pretend cook and grocery shop with her, and if they didn’t want to (and preferred to be doing neanderthal-like things like uzzah-ing the house down) then she would go to a corner and be perfectly fine talking to and cooking for her soft toys and her bolsters.

Becks at 3 half

Her ambition for now is to be a mummy. A good mummy, she says. I wonder where she got that inspiration.


I’ll be lying to say I don’t have a favourite. When you have more than one kid, you’re bound to have someone who is the apple of your eye.

That said, I don’t play favourites. I don’t pit one sibling against another and bring on the rivalry with any favouritism games. I love them all with all my heart and all that I can in my capacity as their mother and a human being.

So this boy.

Nat at 2

He turned two last month and is starting to talk in sentences it’s just way too cute, cute, cute. The things he says and words he strings together – aww, soooo cute, I tell you – just melts my heart and makes me laugh so heartily everyday. Not a day passes by without bouts of laughing out loud and sides-splitting gaggles filling the house. With Nat, we’ve heard much laughter, and had much laughter.

So while I’m sometimes tearing my hair out at trying to communicate with my firstborn and feeling the frustration of handling the temperamental middle child, the baby – and resident clown – in the house gives me much respite from the parenting weariness of the day. I’m just glad to have only suffered hardship from the Terrible Twos one out of three. I was anticipating and bracing myself for tough times with the littlest who has a mule-like temperament, and while the littlest has his “moments”, it’s been so easy to handle his moments with distractions and lots of hugs and kisses.

I’m really going to miss this stage. And because Nat is Nat, I’m so glad we didn’t decide to stop at two. We can do with more funniness, adorableness, and happiness in this house, methinks.


Hello everyone. I’m Motherkao. I have three kids age 5, 3-half and 2 and a new season of parenting is here again. I am bracing myself for the challenges ahead. There’s potty training, meal times routines, sleep training and weaning (yes, 24 months and still going on – ugh!) to settle, ABCs and 123s to teach, words and books to read, songs to sing, stories to tell, games to play and lots of clowning around to do. There’s also fun to be had, skills to teach, values to impart and lives to shape.

In other words, there’s a whole lot of mothering to do.

The Kao Kids Mar2014

You Might Also Like

No Comments

Leave a Reply