Today you are 2 1/2 years old. We have been saying, "He is two and a half." for a while now... but today is the official day!
Your big wheels
Pancakes at Ihop - Mickey Mouse style!
When you were a newborn baby, Mommy sang to you. Sometimes the words were random, some songs were traditional lullabies, but there was one song Mommy made up and she repeated it many times... "Mommy loves you. Daddy loves you. Everybody loves you too. I look forward to the day when you can say, I love you Mommy, yes I do." I still sing that song to you when you are getting sleepy.
Morning light, praying hands in sleep
Not long ago, I was in the bathroom, with the door closed. You knocked on the door. I opened the door and you said, "Mommy, I love you." A petal on a wishing flower lifted to the sky and became a star, because you, my sweet son, made a wish come true.
You are learning so many things. You love to help! You love to make a mess too with your toys - everywhere. But the happy note is that you are now learning how to clean up! Daddy got you into this habit by turning the clean up into a counting game. Daddy would count how many toys you would put in the toy box; you ran to gather the toys and keep Daddy counting.
Yesterday, you came into Mommy's craft area and I said, "Mommy has to clean up." You left the room and came back a little while later and said, "Mommy, I help clean up." And you did, you put all of your toys away. Part of the night routine is that all of your toys go into the toy box before bath time.
Words are your friend and you are loving surprising us with word combinations, such as, "Mommy, blue shirt, brown hair." (I was wearing a blue shirt when you said this.) Or, "Mommy, hair dry." And "Mommy, hair wet." (After I have taken my shower.) You aren't just saying random words, you are watching the world around you and describing things.
You spent time with Franz and her family, totally enjoying time spent with your good friend, Francois.
Sometimes, though, I don't understand what you are saying right away. It was late one evening, when you said something... clearly you knew what you were trying to express. I looked at you and said, "I don't understand." You tilted your head to the side, put your finger to your check and said again, "Bath Time" and then did the sign language for bath time! We haven't practiced sign language in such a long time, I was delighted.
When you are ready to get out of the tub, you will point and ask for the "towel."
One night while you were taking your bath, there was a cylinder shaped container that you filled with water. Daddy warned you not to dump the water out of the tub, a major pet peeve of Daddy. You filled the container, dumped out the water outside of the tub and Daddy fussed! You had this scared little look on your face. Your two little hands went on either side of your face. You were about to sob... Mommy said, "Tell Daddy that you are sorry." In a tearful voice, you said, "Sorry Daddy." Daddy smiled... anger melted. See what words can do?
Granny was amazed with how vocal and communicative you are now. She said, "It's like he was storing up the words and a flood gate opened." I think summer camp had a lot to do with this. Kids learn from kids. This is not to discredit what all we have worked on with you, but listening to other children probably was the extra push to open the gate.
You found Mommy's fingerless gloves.
Mommy sang, "Three little kittens lost their mittens."
You grabbed Mommy's scarf and put your fingers through to have your mittens!
I had to stop typing this letter to you... because you requested my presence. Music played after a television show you were watching. You started twirling around, then you reached out to Daddy and said, "Dance" then you yelled, "Momma!" How can I resist? The three of us danced round and round and silly stomping to the sounds. You loved it. Mommy and Daddy did too!
Potty training is not taking, but... you are teaching your doll, Joey, about potty training.
You like showing Joey apps on your iPad mini.. and then say, "Shhh, Joey sleep"
Just recently Oma and Opa went to Maryland to visit your cousin, TJ, and your Aunt Roda and Uncle Rob. While Mommy and Daddy worked, you visited with Granny, Grandfather and Uncle Jerry. Granny said you were interacting really well and saying, "I love you" to everyone. You had a blast painting and using markers and play dough. Granny even bought you this squishy type of dough that feels like snot and makes a "fart" sound. You thought it was hilarious!
Fun times with Uncle Jerry
Kisses for Granny
Granny was impressed with your ability to count from 1 to 10 and how well you know your colors. (Mommy and Daddy are working with you on your ABC's. Mommy turns the ABC's into a "whisper" game. I whisper the letter to you and you repeat whisper it back. You are starting to know a few letters before I say them, especially Z! (We also play the ABC game with words, "A is for Apple. B is for Boy." Mommy tries to find words that you are familiar with, so when Mommy got to F... she said, "F is for FART" You busted out laughing! Daddy told Mommy, "Don't say that! He will end up saying that in school!")
Mommy told Granny how one evening you were eating popcorn. There wasn't much left in the plate, so Mommy ate the rest of it. You gave Mommy a look, as if to say, "You did NOT just eat that!" You took the empty plate and brought it to Daddy, saying, "Daddy! Mommy eat all popcorn!" You strung those words together in a very clear, calm sentence (with a touch of attitude). We were so happy over your words, that we clapped. You probably thought we were nuts... we clap after eating your popcorn. Well, during a visit with your grandparents, Granny said, "It happened to him again. Gregory said, "Unc Jer ate all POP corn!" Uncle Jerry made him more."
Granny also shared with us how you kept pulling her over to the microwave. Grandfather put coffee in the microwave and then walked away, forgetting it was there. But you heard the microwave "ding" and you kept saying, "food cook! food cook!"
One scary note, you rolled and fell out of bed with a loud sound and painful cries one night. I ran into your room, my heart in my throat. You ended up with a bruise on your cheek and elbow, but you were okay... of course, mommy and daddy did not sleep that night out of worry. After a variety of helpful suggestions from family and friends on Facebook, we bought a pool tube and put it under the protective sheet and fitted sheet. Then we put a bean pillow to block where your head might turn first before even getting to the tube. Instead of no rugs, we put the play mat next to your bed. No rolling and fall problems since then.... but you do get up in the middle of the night, usually around 2am, to tap on Mommy's arm to join us in bed.
Our little kitchen helper.... you want to be in the kitchen with us when we cook. Daddy was making pasta and he drained the pasta, saying, "Hot pasta, be careful!" Then Daddy took a plate of pasta to Mommy. When I put the fork in the pasta, you yelled, "NO MOMMA! HOT HOT!" Then you puckered your lips and started to blow furiously on my plate to cool off the food.
And tonight... Daddy sat you on the kitchen cabinet. We were trying out a new recipe. I took out the asparagus that you helped us to get at the grocery store. I showed you how to snap them into smaller pieces and you went at it, while I mixed the beef broth and seasonings together. Daddy was cutting up the steak, garlic and onions and starting with the cooking... you saw me stirring the mixture and you asked to stir. I handed it to you. I loved seeing how interactive you are. As we prepared the meal, we let you sniff the spices. Most of the time you made a "yuck" sound.. until we got to honey. You liked that. (To view the recipe, CLICK HERE) - meal came out delicious and couple it with some fun memories!
Daddy and Aunt Yaya (Madelyn) celebrated their birthdays. During the family gathering, you watched as your cousin, Alivia, put toys in her mouth. You got really upset at one point and yelled, "NO CHEW CAR!" Everyone laughed. Later, when we sang happy birthday, you told Aunt Yaya, "Hap Birthday" - so sweet.
Selfie with Mommy
NO CHEW CAR!
Aunt Yaya with your cousin, Kenzie
Tree outside of Granny and Grandfather's house.
You and your cousin, Alivia, playing
Oma and Opa are home. When you saw them, you screamed with delight! Oma showered you with hugs and kisses. You are having lots of fun with paints, markers and SAND (which was followed by an early bath time when we got home. Lol).
Pants covered in sand!
Momma, I paint!
Recently, we went to the park... You saw a bird and it saw you...
I have loved every aspect of your life and look forward to what you will teach us next, sweet boy. I love what you see, describe and participate in. The joy you find in life, your hugs and kisses, your "MaMah"(sounds like a little Italian boy sometimes, totes adorbs), you are blessings that are too high to count and may we forever find those blessings in our family ~ countless.