Thursday, 8 November 2012

i miei tre mascalzoni

You don't raise heroes, you raise sons.  
And if you treat them like sons, they'll turn out to be heroes, even if it's just in your own eyes.  
~Walter M. Schirra, Sr.

Be careful to leave your sons well instructed rather than rich, 
for the hopes of the instructed are better than the wealth of the ignorant.  

Of all the animals, the boy is the most unmanageable.  ~Plato

I have always admired Plato. He knows his stuff.

I wanted to give an update on the boys - purely for the reason of marking this date in time and putting their character, likes and dislikes in writing. Figuring that one day I'll look back at this post and say "Ahhh I now remember how they were when we were living in Italy. How little they were. How naughty they were. How gosh darn cute they were!".

So here's the low-down on my three rascals:
*all photos are taken by our amazing Swiss friends and their flash-as-a-flash-thing camera. 


5 years old.

This boy is pure dynamite! I don't think I have ever met anyone as strong-willed as this little boy.
I really don't know who he gets it from......... {damn}.

He loves to be in charge and come up with ideas for things.
Doesn't like the fact that mamma and pappa are the boss...

Luca is super-charged for fun and laughs and tickles and any physical contact at all the times.
Lately he has been a great help around the house - I often find him standing on his yellow stool at the kitchen sink doing the dishes. I know! How cool is that?!

The other day when Max was power-chucking all over the kitchen floor and I couldn't find the wipes on hand, Luca raced up the stairs at my command to have a look for them and came racing down again with great triumph when he found them. 
Shortly after this I settled Max down for a sleep and came downstairs again to find Luca filling up the mop bucket with water. When I asked him what he was doing he replied, "I'm cleaning up the vomit. It's a puzza (stinky) smell".

Which brings me on to his Italian/English vocabulary. Often his sentences are dotted with the odd Italian word thrown in. e.g. the other day when he was doing some drawing with his colouring pens (which are getting a bit old) he said to me "Mamma this giallo has lots of colore".
And just tonight when I was praying with him before he went to sleep:

{Mamma} - "Thank you that Luca had a fun day at school today--"
{Luca} - "It's scuola Mamma, scuola"
{Mamma} - "Oh... si, scusa Luca - Thank you that Luca had a fun day at scuola today..."

Luca is a wonderful big brother (most of the time) and enjoys looking out for Beni and Max and including/informing them on things when we are out and about.
When playing inside the thing you will most likely hear him say is "Come on Beni, FIGHT ME!"

He is pulling out some really cool dance moves and rap songs which he makes up on the spot and performs them with great gusto, finishing with a dramatic pose at the end. It's awesome to watch.

Most days I have at least two battle-of-the-wills with him which are never pleasant and always exhausting. Yet I can see his determined spirit and confidence will hold him in great steed for when he is older. 
Although the process will be a bit painful and not without tears, I can already see he is going to be a very fine upstanding gentleman.


3 years old *at the end of November

This little guy is a rascal. Funny, fun-loving, chilled-out, dramatic, sensitive, quietly mischievous (...once again, I don't know where he gets that from.....)
I could spend a lot of my day laughing at Beni-Boo. 
He is the definition of a cheeky monkey.

Still loves his muzzy (muslin cloth) and dummy (pacifier/soother) a bit too much, but when we are all together again as a family we can work on getting him used to being without the 'comfort' of his dummy. Potty training him by myself is quite enough for me at this stage!

Beni is the King of Movie Quotes. At the oddest moments he comes out with a line that quite often leaves me in tears from laughing.
A few months back he was particularly angry at me over something and he came up to me, leaned forward and yelled "YOU. ARE. A. TOY!!" (from Toy Story). I swear I nearly peed my pants when he came out with that one.
There's the "Look at mah face!" from Despicable Me, and numerous one-liners from Tangled.
But my favourite is saying to me, quite out of the blue: "Mamma, are you a muppet or are you a man?" (from The Muppets movie).

When it comes to tantrums, he doesn't really know how to do them with any effect. It's just not in his nature.
Super chilled-out, a day-dreamer. 
The kind of boy who always has time to stop and smell the roses.
The kind of boy who, if there was a field with one tree in the middle of it, he would run into that tree and bump his head because he wasn't looking where he was going.

Nine times out of ten Beni ends up in our bed at night. I often wake to a little body snuggled up against my back. And this is fine by me - I secretly look forward to when he'll wander down the hall during the night for cuddles.

He is tender and affectionate - at night when I say prayers with him he likes me to lie beside him ("Mamma, lie downna me") while he settles into sleep. As I lie beside him with my eyes closed I often feel a little pat-pat on my face, a tender stroke on my cheek or nose, a rub on my shoulder by a dear little hand.
These are some very precious moments I have with my Beni-Boo that I will always treasure.


18 months old.

This boy is a little firecracker! Our Rosso Furioso.

Max totally adores his brothers and thinks they are the most funnest people around. 
When Luca and Beni are playing and running after each other, Max will join in and laugh when they are laughing and run when they are running, parroting their expressions and exclamations - not that he understands the game or what they are laughing about but just because he wants to be like them. And they are fun.

He is super confident in all activities - runs, jumps, climbs, wrestles without fear and with much gusto.

But when he wants something and is denied it - well, he will let you know his disapproval and without holding back.
I have never known a 1 year old to throw tantrums. Luca didn't cotton on to these until he was at least 2 years old and Beni hasn't cottoned on to them at all... 
But Max throws them and they are hilarious! I find it very difficult not to laugh at him when he's thrown himself down on the ground and is kicking his legs because I won't let him have any of my wine. 
Or because he didn't want me to put away my boobies yet because apparently he wasn't finished feeding (although all he was doing was stroking them and quite frankly I've got better things to do...) Yes I am still breastfeeding my 18 month old and no it doesn't look like he's interested in giving them up yet.

Max has become quite the celebrity around the village here, what with his capelli rossi e occhi blu (red hair and blue eyes). 
And the way he says ciao and buon giorno without being prompted. 
Yes, hearts melt.

Being a 'surprise' baby he was obviously quite unexpected, but Oh. My. Goodness. am I pleased he came along! I can't imagine this family being complete without him. 
He gives the most wonderful cuddles, completely wrapping his arms around your neck and is very happy and content (except for when I don't let him have any of my wine... what a mean mamma huh?)

These boys are each so different but have a very strong brotherly bond. 
I know one day they will all be taller than me and patting me on the head while they (no doubt) make fun of me. 
But I am already so very proud of them and the responsibility I have as their mamma often leaves me with heart palpitations.
I want the very best for them.
I want them to be the very best they can be.
I want them to succeed.
I want them to be happy, well-mannered, respectful, confident, loyal, wise men who love God, people and creation.
Isn't this every mother's wishes?
I guess I'm super scared I'll hinder them in some way from achieving the above.
Am I too angry? Probably.
Am I too strict/claustrophobic/limiting/grumpy? Possibly.
But I'm doing my best under our current circumstances and I really hope and pray they will look back on their childhood and have nothing but memories of happiness, love and security. 



  1. Ohhhhhhhh I miss my boys so MUCH! My shoulders were shaking all the way through this (with laughter, although tears were threatening) give them all big SQUEEZES from me please xxxx

  2. You sound like such a wonderful mama, with three gorgeous boys... I loved this post x

  3. Fantastic post Buzzy Bee!! The boys are SO gorgeous, and you're an amazing Mamma!! They will definitely look back on their childhood with memories of happiness, love and security. I can't wait to see you all again with their wee cousin in tow!! xxx

  4. Oh Brigitte! What a wonderful post! Love love love reading it and being encouraged by it. Love that you are embracing every possible aspect of mothering and whether you believe it or not YOU are doing a very wonderful job!

  5. Totally gorgeous post and beautiful pics. Your boys will love to read this in years to come xx


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