1. Only a year left before, in accordance with the sacred covenant entered into when he was four, he can have his own pet. I can't say I or the CFO are very much looking forward to this, particularly as his enthusiasms currently tend towards the high maintenance and lizardy.
"Are you sure, darling, about a monitor lizard? They are, uh, very large. What about a nice gerbil?"
He looks dreamily into the middle distance, plotting. "Maybe a three horned cameleon? Or one of those Golden Dart Frogs?"
"NOTHING VENOMOUS. We have agreed this already. You cannot renege on the no-venom agreeement".
2. He is huge. Colossal. Barely a head shorter than me. His legs are a mile long. If he is anything like me, he has about another year of being vast and lording it over his contemporaries, before he stops growing entirely. His father is barely taller than I am, so I do not fancy his chances of staying vast. However I think he already has better social skills than me, so evolution is clearly good for something. He definitely has his father's terrier like negotiating skills. We are having an eye-wateringly expensive paintballing party (oh joy, small children armed with guns, my favourite thing) but he has already sidled up to me and tried to negotiate to have someone to sleep over on the night.
"Ugh. Lashes. Really? Hmph. Do you have any friends who are NOT loud?"
"Errrr. Maybe a girl?"
"Ha. I do not think that is any guarantee of non-loudness".
"Hmm. I will think. You agree then? "
"I did not say that! Gah".
(The last sleepover nearly broke me. I had to point-blank refuse a direct request for another one from a child last weekend because I could not trust myself not to have a PTSD style breakdown and lock myself in the cellar muttering 'toothpaste in shoes! Toothpaste in shoes!')
3. I have terrible terrible cake anxiety. I feel he has outdone himself in the sadistic cake request stakes this year, with the demand for "Crabzilla, and a spinal column. On the same cake". "Or" he offered with a magnanimous wave of one hand in my direction whilst lying on the floor reading mangas "on two cakes, if that is easier, maman".
As a consequence I am now spending important time which should be spent earning money, thinking about how to achieve the spiny texture and red colour of Crabzilla's legs. I have some giant extra-sour cola flavoured bootlaces, and some Fraises Tagada (wow, the Fraise Tagada has its own Wikipedia page). I am thinking a finely chopped mixture of the two sprinkled on ridges of thick piped icing, perhaps. And what about his face? Does he even have a face?
(I love this picture, incidentally. Look how proud that man is to be holding a giant spider crab. I wish I had job satisfaction like that.)
I don't know if Crabzilla has a face. It has some sort of .. ugh. Business. Gills, and other unpleasantness. I don't know. I estimate he is about 68% leg, 23% unspeakable business, 9% claw.
Here it seems to have a sort of gloomy menacing anime face like thing, sort of.
Despite many previous cake triumphs (well, disasters averted might be more accurate), I'm really not feeling it, this spider crab cake. Emergency cake advice, people? Please?
(Why am I trying to pander to my eccentric eldest child's bizarre request, you might wonder. It's traditional, I suppose. I tried to explain my cake neurosis already here, but in brief, the cake is some kind of ritual demonstration of love, in my twisted reasoning. There are, I think, so many things I do badly as a parent, I try to make sure there is this one constant, something I do right. So I cannot fail. The crab must be at least recognisably crab-like. I am willing to forget about the spinal column, because sanity is precious and should not be wasted on unco-operative fondant icing.)