Reading in his room...

We monitor his bedroom and as result I overheard him reading to himself. So, of course, I snuck up there with the camera!


Mr. Independent

You're now just a month shy of your second birthday. I feel guilty that I've been terrible at documenting your milestones, so without further delay, I'd like to bring you up to speed...

The pictures above will always bring me a smile. They demonstrate your independent spirit. On this particular day, I'd peeked in the fridge and taken stock of some lunch time options. As, I went upstairs to confer with your sister on what she preferred to eat...I came back downstairs to discover you with your very own pizza buffet, already eating. You can now do a lot of things on your own, which includes opening the refrigerator and pantry!

You are talking very well... in beginner sentences. You still say things in a way that is uniquely "you" and we all still grin when you say something because, as sissy says... "You're SO cute!"
* You love chocolate, and call it "choc"
* When someone calls you - you'll call back that you're coming, which sounds like: "I'm calming..."
* You love your Thomas & Friends trains. But, you call every last one of them "duck."
* When Kenzie heads to school with her backpack on, you have to carry yours too (which is why you got a super-duper cute one for Xmas). You also love Dora & Diego. But, you call the show "backpack."
* You have several favorite movies to watch, and when you watch them you stand there and call out directions. "T" -for turn on the TV. "Backpack" "trains" or "Baby" announce that you'd like to watch Dora, Thomas, or the sign-language video. And, once we get to inserting the DVD into the machine...you. want. to. do. that. yourself. "I DO IT."
* You're a sucker-a-holic. Nana and poppy started you on those. And, some days we battle with you all day over whether you can have one. or not. You refer to them as suck's.
* You have bathtoys that you sleep with. They are three Thomas trains. And, we have to kiss them goodnight, when we put you to bed. "nigh-night trains???" you ask until we give them their kisses and cover them up with a tiny blanket.
* You're still very interested in books. You love to be read to, but often we'll see you sitting in a corner with a billion books spread around you. You'll review them page by page with your forehead crinkled as you consider each picture. You'll often narrate them for yourself too.
*Everyone takes such delight in your terms that we've all taken to calling cow's "Mee-Moo's", Pony's "Kony's", and #2's "pee-poo's". And, we don't realize it sometimes when we're talking to Kenzie's friends and they look at us like we're crazy.
* You tell us when your diaper is dirty...and then run like mad and make us chase you to change it.
* You like the opposite of what Kenzie likes when it comes to food. You'd love eggs for breakfast every day (which she hates), won't touch peanut butter and honey (which she loves), etc. Fortunately, you both agree that "green noodles" is something you could eat every day.
* You love "molk" and talk to it like it's your long-lost friend. {milk}
* You still call to us waaaaaaay too early in the morning. Seems like we've got two early risers in the family, much to my dismay. But, often you'll run to the crib when it's naptime chanting "nap, nap, nap..."
* "momo" {elmo} always gets your attention at the library. As does rummaging through the aisles in search of books you'd like to bring home. And, being the bookworm that you are - you LOVE story hour.
*You're the lover of "nacks." You would snack all day every day if we'd let you. As I mentioned before..you'll just open that pantry door and help yourself, so we keep handy snacks there ready for ya!
* Sometimes, when you know you're in trouble (or on the cusp of it) you'll get this devilish little grin and try to charm us out of it. Once when you were already on the naughty step, you reached out to give me knuckles. I responded by reminding me you were in trouble and to sit there... so you grinned, and exploded your own knuckles. Wise guy.
* You adore playing chase & hide-and-seek. But, you get nervous when someone scares you...so you insist "mama come!" so that I can carry you and cuddle you when the monsters come out of hiding.
* Of course, Daddy coming home is a highlight of everyday. You ask me a thousand times "is Daddy calming?" until he gets here. And, then it switches to: "Daddy shoes? 'Mon" which tells daddy that you're glad he's home, now c'mon...take me somewhere!
* We have lot's of silly games, like the "I need to warm up my hands" game. If someone's just come inside and their hands are chilly, we'll sneak them up the back of your shirt and place them on your warm skin. Which makes you squeal and squirm, of course. And, that's why we like it. But, it's especially funny when you try to do it to us. Except when we're out in public!
* After you've been naughty, you know the routine upon leaving the naughty step. You head right over to offer your apology. You lower your voice, tilt your head, and with gentle hands caress the persons face - saying "I'm sorry." Everything... is always better after you give your sweet little hug.
* You answer to many things: Ry, Ry-baby, monkey, stink-bottom, sweet pea, bubs, to name a few. You call your sister Kenzie (said perfectly) or sissy. You call us simply "Mom & Dad" which is interesting given that Kenzie calls us Mommy or Mama & Daddy. You call Nana, "Nanny." You've put your own little unique spin on everything!

In summary:
You bring us many smiles kiddo. You are at your cutest freshly washed and smelling of lotion. Your eyes are huge and your eyelashes huger. And, you know that when you bat both of them at us... we'll melt in a heartbeat. Your quite the comedian. But, you're quite bossy. You want anyone and everyone to play trains with you, but there are a couple rules involved: 1. DO NOT blow the train whistle. And 2. Do not try to join trains with you.. for any reason. You'll promptly detach the extra trains and leave them in your dust. You'll also pretend to be Sir Topham Hat (or "hat" as you call him) and give the other trains their orders.

It's such a privilege to watch you with your sister. There's no one you adore more...and vice versa. She's so gentle and sweet with you, and rarely is there a sibling rivalry match. You both play together very well and we're very lucky to know that she'll tolerate just about anything that's coming from sweet little you. Sometimes your cuteness takes us all by surprise. But, she'll so readily voice it.

You've almost been in our world for two whole years. And, we've enjoyed every minute of it.


The Wee Shoveler

I joke that your fondness for snow shoveling will probably come to a quick halt once you're old enough to truly help out with it..but at 23 months, man...you love to shovel! We realized this a bit late into the accumulation (after listening to you squeal while daddy and Kenzie shoveled MOUNDS), but now that you're aware of the possibility - it's impossible to tell you no.

You could shovel for hours. And you do.

But, you don't quite grasp the concept that we're trying to CLEAR the walkway when we do it. You laboriously move as much snow as possible right. where. it. shouldn't. be.

But, heck. You're happy. And, that's what life's all about, eh?


Extended vacation

This year, our wish for a white Christmas went a bit too far. It snowed, and it snowed and it snowed right into Kenzie's extended vacation from school. After returning on January 4 for one whole day, the snow cancelled school for the rest of the week! While cooped up inside only to escape for a visit to the dentist and doctor - we tried to make the best of it with some fun snow day crafts and activities.... We made shrinky dink(el)s, ice ornaments, played in Mama's boots, and lots more. But, mostly we concentrated on driving a Mama nuts!

You kiddos spent a fair amount of time playing 1:1. You were even granted access to the Nude Barbie Castle!