Tuesday, December 30, 2008

3 years, 2 months

Dear Son,

Golly it's been a busy month! So many holiday related things to do and see. Visiting with Santa, Christmas shopping, driving through the decorated towns and twinkling neighborhoods, finding a tree, breaking Hallmark collectible ornaments, finding more things to ask for Christmas presents, Grandparents and uncles in town, misplacing your enthusiasm, gingerbread men making, eating too much junk food, playing in the snow, breakfast with Grandpa each morning and entertaining your Aunt Heidi and cousin Sierra. This list could go on for awhile. You've had more fun than any 3 year old could ask for!

Christmas, this year, was so much more fun than I ever remember! The spirit of the season entered our house earlier than usual and it still feels like it's lingering in the air. And it's all because of you, your age, your personality and your anticipation! You were so excited for Santa to come! It was pure joy talking to you Christmas morning and snuggling with you a bit before we went downstairs to see what treasures Santa left. Santa came through with your Yoda action figure! You were so happy! It took you awhile to notice the race track Santa set up for you but when you saw it, you started racing your McQueen car and went and found more cars to race with it. A holiday dream watching you and partaking in your glee.

You got some new games and puzzles from both sets of Grandparents. I have to report how much more intelligent you've proven to be because of these items. You mastered a 35 piece puzzle and got an A- on the BrainQuest Q & A. You impressed me with your fluency on MightyMind shape tiles/cards in a matter of minutes (a game for 3-7 year olds). I still can't get over how logically your engineer brain works! Now I have to go find the Super edition that says it's for 5-8 year olds.

Speaking of intelligence... you are singing your ABC's and Jesus Wants Me For A Sunbeam so well. I love singing with you each night after prayers. You are such a good boy to go to bed so well and sing so sweetly each night! I love kissing and hugging you good night and telling you that you're the best as I walk out of your room. You either reply with "thank you" or "I da best."

Your fits and whining are sticking around, but you are easier to reason with and show signs of improvement with staying in time out when put there. You follow the rules pretty well and try your best to listen when you are corrected. Mom and Dad are getting better at sticking to their guns at all times, so you, of course, have to follow along. It cracks us both up when you run to the other to tattle that one of us said no to you... and somehow you don't suspect the other parent will just say the same thing. Might as well see if there is a crack in the system... each and every time anyway, eh son?

We've found that you've picked up some less than stellar vocabulary words from either daycare or the TV or someplace. I think you widened Grandma and Grandpa's eyes a few times while they were here. We just tell you that isn't a nice word and move on. No need to dwell on something we don't want to repeat. You are learning how to correct us on words that you think aren't nice too. We always wonder if you heard something different than what we actually said. Funny kid.

We love your sense of humor. You crack us up daily. We can't get enough of your giggles and jokes. The "you're silly Mommy" comment every now and then puts a smirk on my face. Even when I am not being silly you think I am. I love that you find humor in simple things. You love to brag about your muscles and how big you've gotten. Lately your head has had a growth spurt. We talk about your head and how big it is daily. Mainly when putting shirts on or taking them off. You are so proud that you've grown so you just laugh and play the struggle-to-get-the head-to-fit game with us. When we ask you why your head is so big you just say "I don't know" in the cutest voice and with a glimmer of pride. What a man. Gosh, you are darling.

I like how independent you are. You can open the fridge yourself, do all your puzzles yourself, put in DVD's to watch, wash your vital parts in the tub, put on your shoes, fulfill favors we ask you to do around the house and more. It's so neat to have a little man living with us. You really are helpful and polite - and we love it.

Liam tickling Sierra's funny bone - one moment of many.

Another month to be thankful for a boy named Liam. I am so happy you are in my life to bring me joy and test my patience. You are one of a kind and I love you more than anyone or anything. You are something I crave when I go to bed and when I am working at the office. I love spending time with you and wish, sometimes, that I could wake you up for another hug and chat... or take off work early and drive you someplace fun to play. You're a nut like your dad and it's difficult to be without comic releif for too long. I can always count on one of you for that.

Love you always,

P.S. I love to tickle your shoulders and knees. That hearty chuckle from your belly makes me smile a mile wide.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Still playing catch up

Hopefully tonight or tomorrow I'll be blogging for real. Heidi and Seirra left for Idaho this morning. Liam didn't want Sierra to leave and was all pouts saying good-bye. Those two are such good friends whenever we get them together.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Photos for Mom

Grandma and Grandpa left yesterday and Heidi got here on Friday with Sierra. It's been busy, so I'll get to Liam's letter soon. Mom wanted us to get a photo of all 4 of us, so I broke out my new gorillapod and figured out the timer on my new camera. Take your pick, Mom.

Friday, December 26, 2008

He got the Yoda!

Santa found our house last night! Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas Day. I'll have a full report soon... and the monthly letter.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Eve's Eve

Liam and Grandma made another creation with the leftover supplies from the gingerbread men they did last week.

Spending Time With Liam

So I've been thinking the past few days that maybe, just maybe I could handle being a stay at home mom. Without the stresses of work the past few days, I've actually been fairly calm with Liam. Plus he's really nice in the mornings so that is great to savor.

For example, Monday I took him into work to hand out some Christmas goodies (and so I could drop off some Avon orders). Liam was darling carrying around a big brown bag of goodies and handing them to some of my favorite co-workers. He'd hand it over and say Merry Christmas so sweet then give them generous hugs. It was so heartwarming and made me so proud that he was mine. Everyone, of course, was enchanted by him. They'd ask him what Santa is bringing him for Christmas and he wouldn't miss a beat to let them know Yoda was for sure going to be under the tree!We went to Wal-mart after that (mind you is was still the a.m.) and he actually stayed in the cart and if he wasn't in the cart, he stayed with me. This is not the way he does it when we go shopping at night... night shopping is a nightmare with him. So again I was so proud of him and told him he deserved a treat for being so good. He got cheetoes later that day as a reward.

When we got home it was still snowing like crazy. Actually, most of Monday was chunky flakes coming down. Liam HAD to be a part of that, so I bundled him up and I put on Ian's boots and we waded in the snow together. I started shoveling the drive and Liam swam in the 8 or 9 inches of snow in the front yard. It was insane how much snow we had dumping down. Here are a few shots of Liam's fun. Uncle Blake and Mom helped me shovel and also helped Liam make forts and sledding ramps. Uncle Tyler showed up too and he started helping Liam's cause... They had a tall sledding hill built up pretty quickly.

Liam ate some lunch and then crashed. He was beat.

Later we ate lasagna with Grandma and Grandpa and Daddy and just played the evening away while the weather got worse outside.

Liam took a nice warm bath with his ducks (from the Lucky Ducks game Grandma got him). He lined them all up and pretended they were afraid of his duck eating shark. I got some very cute photos of that fun.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Gingerbread Cookie Decorating with Grandma

Click photo to enlarge.

Grandma played with Liam last night while I was out visiting teaching. He had so much fun licking, decorating and playing in the icing.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

December's Meltdown

Remember THIS? Well this time it was over a cookie as we were leaving the sitter... and I got scratched on the face. Jaws dropped at day care and it took all my power to get that mad kid into his car seat. Once we got home, Daddy couldn't convince the insanity to end either. Liam came out of the zone after about 45 minutes of pure rage. Combative is just one word of many I could use.

I guess one meltdown a month is alright, right?

Sunday Night Rockband

Thanks to the Wheeler's, Ian has wanted Rockband since he played in July with all those funny brothers. So with his birthday money he bought himself this noisy video game. Just in time to have people to play it with him... cuz we all I know I won't touch it. Thanks, Tyler, Drew, Blake, Dad and Liam for obliging him.

Other notes:

Liam thinks he does pretty well on the drums... he's really good at climbing on all the other players too and messing up their percentages.

Liam's most requested music is "MORE COW BELL!"

Monday, December 15, 2008

It finally came!

We got our snow on Saturday! Liam couldn't wait for it to stop falling, so he went out during the storm. It was freezing out there. I mainly watched from the window, but went out to the porch to take a few shots of his cuteness having a blast in the snow.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Friday we trimmed the Tree

Friday night we decorated the tree. Rather, Liam ran around with all my ornaments and I did all the real work. I made him hold a strand of lights so I could at least get one photo of him "helping" me. This is all I got from his stubborness?

A light bulb up the nose.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Finding the Tree

It's that time of December when we go buy our Alpine Fir. We actually had to search this year because the regular lot we go to wasn't there. Sad. So we kept driving last night and found a lot with those special "Charlie Brown Trees" as many call them. I don't think it's Charlie Brown at all. I love how perfectly sparse it is. We need a skinny tree anyway because our house is so small.

After playing much hide and seek with Liam and finding our tree, Daddy tied it to the top of the car and we were off to eat doughnuts as Krispy Kreme. YUM.

Messed Up

Last night before bed, I put my hair in a pony tail right on top of my head so I could pull in the growing bangs. Not my normal night time do. It looked funny, but not unacceptable for sleeping.

This morning Liam saw my hair and the messier mess it had become after sleeping on it.

He said, "Mom your hair is really messed up!"

I said, "No, it's fine. Your hair is messed up!"

"No it not!"

"Yes, it is."

"No, YOUR hair is messed up!"

I went to look and he was right. A much more scary style than usual.

Thursday, December 11, 2008


Not only am I having a blogging drought, we are having a snow drought this winter in the Utah Valley. We are so overdue for snow photos of my darling boy! Usually by December 1st we are out there playing in the fun white stuff. We bought the nice snow pants and he got a great coat from the Grandparents... we've been prepared and waiting since November. It's just not right.

I've been keeping busy with getting the house organized for the upcoming Christmas festivities at our house. Grandma and Grandpa are going to be on their way from Minnesota tomorrow. We can't wait to host Christmas this year for Ian's parents and his 3 brothers. Liam is going to get so much attention from them all (being the only nephew and grandchild). It's going to be so great to be together - all of us. We haven't been together since Ian and I got married over 8 years ago. It's been too long.

That is all I have to report for now. I'll leave you with a Liam funny...

Liam makes a cat call sound... not a whistle, but a sing song "woo hoo" kind of thing. Baffled as to where he came up with that sound effect, I said, "Where did that come from?" Liam says, "My mouth!"

There you have it. A smart aleck and he probably doesn't even know it.

Friday, December 05, 2008

Waiting for Santa

I had to post this photo of Liam waiting his turn to see Santa last Saturday. We were 2nd in line when we got there. Virtually no wait, but anything more than 10 seconds takes patience for a 3 year old. Isn't he the most handsome boy?!?

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Liam loves Santa in 2008

We were beyond proud of Liam on Saturday for not crying on Santa's lap. He chatted it up and Santa was so charmed by him. (He gave him a little hug and said he was such a sweetheart.) Ever since then, Liam has reminded us daily that Santa is bringing him a Yoda ("oda") for Christmas. No, he's never seen Star Wars, but he saw a friendly looking green guy in a toy catalog over a month ago and has been asking for Oda ever since.

We also went to Gardner Village and the Gateway on Saturday. Liam loved finding all the elves in the village.

We have most of our Christmas shopping done. Just two more things to get! Yay! Liam wasn't a big help, but the long day of shopping did wear him out. He fell asleep in the car on our way to Ruby Tuesday. Carrying him into the restaurant didn't wake him at all. Here he is out cold in our booth. It was like we were out on a date without him. Very nice to eat our steaks in peace.

After dinner Liam woke in the car, we fed him on our way to see the drive through Christmas light show at Thanksgiving Point. We were goofing off in the car and laughing so much that night. So glad we could end the day on a happy note.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

3 years, 1 month

Dear Son,

I have a three year old! It's still surreal to say it out loud. I have a three year old.

You are getting so tall, and heavy. It's a task to carry you around. You like us to tote you around still. You get so tired when we are out and about... you plead with us to carry you. It's a workout, you are killing my back, but you are hard to say no to. In the mornings you insist on me carrying you down the stairs... sometimes I am so delirious, I fear we'll both tumble. I like how you do the full body baby monkey hold in the mornings though.

You're charming and loving. You randomly and frequently say you love me. What more can I say? My heart melts when you do this.

You're smart and strong willed. Your reasoning techniques are sneaky and when they aren't sneaky, they are repetitive and carry on for too long. The nature of the 3 year old beast, but MY you can hold a greedy thought. You are good at slamming doors when you don't get your way or are caught off guard with my plans for you. I try to stifle laughter when you go out of your way to open a door only slam it.

You're a comedian, kidder and tease. I love it when you say you are "just kidding." We get a kick out of you asking us 30 times a day if your joke, story or site you see is silly too!

You never seem to run out of energy. I know this is a given for people your age, but my goodness, you never stop until the lights are out and you are forced to sleep. Speaking of which, I have to report you've slept in your bed for 2 weeks now! Another testament to me that miracles are real and I am a frequent partaker.

Your voice and word emphasis is indescribable! The way you say Daddy or Mommy at the end of a request. The way you quickly say "duh" instead of "the" in your sentences is darling. I wish I could capture your speech completely. It's so sweet and adorable.

You are trustworthy. I love that I can take a shower or sleep in and know you won't get into trouble. You'll eat your breakfast, watch your chosen show, or play with your toys in your bedroom. I can hand you your allergy medicine and gummie vitamin and know you'll down the medicine first and then that yummy gummie treat. I can walk out of the dining room when you have markers and know you'll replace the caps when you are done and leave them at the table.

All in all, you are still impressing me with your constant growth and abilities! I love you so much and I am very grateful you are a part of my life. You are loyal little friend. You have your moments where you don't like me, but you recover quickly and we can laugh again. Thanks for your continual resilience. You teach me more about myself as the months go by. I know your memories are sticking now. I only hope I can make them good ones.

Love you always,

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Once upon a time...

Liam was only a week old... and he couldn't say NO to my kisses (and then wipe them off when I plant them on him anyway).

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Real Live 3 Year Old

Liam had an hour long melt down last night.

He was punching me and carrying on and on and on... I had to do the "hold" - you know, in my lap in the straight jacket position for awhile.

I'd let go to give him chances to calm, but he'd go for the punch again and again.

It was all my fault.

But it's so impossible to predict.

He was all primed to go to church nursery (where Joslyn and other friends were) so I could go to a class down the hall.

He would not stay in the nursery - he wanted me to stay with him.

So I told him there was no point in us being there if I couldn't go to my class... and then he insisted on going to my "big kid" class with me.

He sat still and quiet in the class on my lap for .09 seconds.

Then he wandered and disrupted.

I scooped him up, boisterous protest began and we left the building.

He wouldn't let me put him in the car seat.

So I took a risk and drove him the two blocks home unchained.

Then when he wouldn't stop screaming (and throwing punches), I left him in the car and went in the house without him.

No worky. More tears and demands.

We got in the house somehow... and upstairs somehow.

It went on and on.

After holds and trying to reason with him on why we left the church... I was able to get us out of the hallway and sitting on his bed.

He cried some more.

I think having his dad out of town the last two weeks must have taken it's toll on him... there were more reasons for this fit than one, I could tell.

I asked him if he needed hugs or kisses or for me to go away... he said no to all.

I don't know why it ever stopped or what distracted him, but I was glad to get his pj's on and be done with the noise for the night.

He actually stayed in his bed all night long. Completely wore himself out.

Maybe bedtime fits aren't so bad after all.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Fun Day

I took Liam to Disney on Ice over the weekend. Joslyn and Kara went with us! The kids had a great time and I was glad we were all able to go together. The funniest part was on the way home... the kids were cracking each other up and we couldn't stop laughing at them from the front seat (and taking photos). They are such an entertaining pair!

I have to report that night when we went to bed, I was snuggling Liam and he said out of the blue, "Mom, you are my best friend!"

I told him he was my best friend too and I loved him so much!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Inspiration on boys

God bless D for sending me this article about toddler boys and their tendencies. I seriously have been worried about Liam's violent words and actions lately. Being raised in a girls only household, I have never really had to deal with crazy little boys. (Even my dad would comfort us by reminiscing of his days as a little girl.) So this gave me great comfort today.

Reading that article also reminded me of the conversations I had with Liam this morning.

"Mom, I am Lightning McQueen and you are Sally, okay? You talk Sally."

So we had a very interesting exchange as Sally and Lightning McQueen. It felt weird like I was playing barbies, but we were just talking with no props. Plain silliness.

Then right before I left him with the sitter, he said, "Kate had two trees! And we have two trees too! In our back garden!"

That's right, Liam. In our back garden. ;)

Monday, November 10, 2008

Some Bunny Has a New Friend

Saturday, I called the right (or wrong) neighbor for some quick advice... before I got off the phone she asked me if Liam would like a baby bunny. I hesitantly said we'd stop by and see the bunny... yeah, we committed to taking it off their hands.

First we went around town to get the bunny food and a cage. Also, we stopped by the local arts center for a kids superhero day. Liam got to play games, eat super hero candy and also made a mask. The local heroes (ie, the firefighters) came and talked to the kids about their job and also show them their fire truck. The siren part was the big hit!

Anyway, we went to pick up the bunny and Liam held him so nice while we drove home. He helped me put the cage together and loved feeding the bunny a sliver of carrot. We played and lounged the rest of the day.

Liam hasn't named the bunny. He is "boy bunny" whenever we ask.