Tuesday, March 25, 2008

2 years, 5 months

Dear Son,

Another month slipped by and it was a bit better than the last one. Your communication has improved and you are helping us understand your needs or wants more than ever. We are loving your speech progress. You boss us around a lot these days... it's funny and we have to catch ourselves when laughter emits so you don't think it's okay to say "no, mine, go away" and "do this, okay?"

My patience has been thin lately and it's been hard for me to have the perspective I need to (as a mom to a two year old smarty pants). The parenting books say you are in the caveman stage of speech and brain development, but it's so hard for me not to treat you like a little adult sometimes. I tend to think you are so capable... and there are times you are... just... not. I have to learn to slow down and let you get whatever you need to say or cry about out of your system. It's times like these where your speech is pure jibberish and I am at an even greater loss for solving your problems.

All two-year-old-verses-the-mom nonsense aside, you are a joy. You have so much energy and love to give everyone you come into contact with. Sometimes you don't know how to express yourself and your enthusiasm... so you hit, throw or even fall to the ground like a little stunt man. I have a feeling that you'll be a big performer one day... among all the other talents you'll develop. And I am sure you'll be able to channel your true feelings, under pressure, better soon too.

Your Grandma Dixie has been here this week. I love to watch her dote on you, talk to you and love on you. You two are such good friends. It's neat to see you interact with her, play games with her and watch your favorite movies together. It seems life is sweeter when she is around to take a mighty interest in all you do. Now and then, Mom and Dad get so run down that we don't take advantage of the full joy you are to all of us. Thank goodness she was here this week to compensate and get excited over all your little doings. What a blessing.

This past month you've been helping around the house and helping me cook and bake. I even ordered you a special stool so you can start helping me even more. I didn't realize how much trouble that stool would get you into. You are finding all sorts of treasures (no no's) as you drag that thing around. I do appreciate you helping me put it together though. You were such a big helper! You'd hold the screws or hold the legs while I would drill them together. You only lost one screw when you decided to put it into a vacant hole of the stool. What's a retro stool without a little rattle?

I have to report once again that you are eating like a champ from last month to this one. You continue to eat dinner so well in the evenings. Most anything I make for the family, you'll eat. Casseroles or whatever. I am so grateful for this.

I am also grateful for a fairly easy bedtime. You aren't begging to cuggle Daddy anymore. You'll go to bed with any toy or item you have attached yourself to that day. Lately it's been the 3 bear finger puppets that came from a plush story book. You've gone to bed with a foam airplane, cars, balloons and even some Dalmatian zipper pulls that you got from your Dalmatian DVD. Such a quirky guy, but we love that you are happy cuddling these items and not so dependent on us.

There is one more thing I have to share here. The past couple months you've been calling any stranger, a boy. You'll see men walking or see kids coming your way and say "boy" or "come here, boy!" It makes me laugh every time. You were jumping on the bed and playing with Daddy the other night and you suddenly said "come here, boy" and I just couldn't stop giggling! It's just funny the way you say it. You even called Boo from Monsters Inc a "little boy." I laughed and then corrected you. I have yet to hear you say "girl" on your own accord.

I want you to know that I love you more than anything, Liam. I love your big personality and the sparkle that is in you. I love kissing your soft little lips, tickling you and hugging you tight. I love your contagious laughs, giggles and those not-so-noticeable breaths of delight when something surprises or pleases you. (I can't explain those tiny utterances that are a split second. But I love them.) Thank you for being patient, loving and forgiving with me. You are so wonderful. I hope you always appreciate life as much as you do today!

Yours Forever,

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Fun Times

It's not even Easter yet and we've already had a ton of fun the past few days.

Thursday night the boys got their hairs cut and then we went for ice cream afterwards. They looked so spiffy with their new cuts. Just in time for Grandma Dixie to come and just in time for Easter weekend too.

Friday I had the day off of work because we were planning on meeting up with Robin and Trent (and the kiddos) while they were still in the area. Liam and I were home all morning. He was such a good boy and let me take some photos of him in the front yard. It was a gorgeous spring day!

Daddy got home and we three left to meet up with Robin and gang at Chuck E Cheese's. It was so good to see everyone, especially Henry. He was my snuggle bud pretty much the whole time. I have been so excited to meet him and he didn't disappoint. Thanks, Robin, for indulging me.

Liam loved all the toys and games at this place with the "big mouse"... He would play the game as best he could, then gather his winnings like a real grown up... folding the tickets just right, then stuffing them in his pockets (video to come). Later he was grooving to the music as he ate his pizza and even gave that "big mouse" a high five. What a little man!

After the lunch party, the gang came back to our house. I had laid Liam down for his nap right before Robin and family got here. An hour later Liam hadn't slept a wink and was downstairs playing with the kids. Yep, he got out of his crib (on his own accord), opened his door and came downstairs because he KNEW there was more partying going on. He really enjoyed Tucker's company. I would love to have Tucker around here more often. What a cute pair they were.

Robin went over to see her old house and the dads went to wash the car. I had 4 kids for a bit and it was as easy as pie. They were so good with each other. Charlotte just played with the boys and Henry would do his own thing crawling all over. I was amazed at how careful the other kids were with Henry when he'd come to drool on the toys they were playing with. Tucker especially knew how to be gentle. Made me miss these kids (and their mom) even more... why did you all have to move to Arizona?

Friday evening Grandma Dixie arrived! He's been talking about her all week long and finally he got to see "Gram!" Liam gave her a nice greeting with a big hug! She was tickled that he hugged her so soon with no warming up. Once we all came inside, she gave Liam some gifts. He opened up a bag full of Crayola Color Wonders and started his art work immediately! A little later, there was a bigger gift to open... a Radio Flyer Tricycle! Daddy put it together and we all went outside to see Liam actually peddle that thing! Such a big kid!


Saturday (today), we got up and around and out of the house by 10am. We made our way to Thanksgiving Point to face a much larger crowd than last year's Easter Eggstreme. We paid to get in then totally skipped all the activities (long lines) that we paid for. We went straight to the farm animals.

It was a brisk day so Liam was feeling kinda chilly. Daddy carried him most of the time as we went through to see all of the animals. We had a warm break when we went inside to see the baby chicks and ducklings. There was a yellow chick and a brown one. We decided to buy the yellow one. Liam and Grandma were in the back seat giggling with that little chick all the way to IFA (where we picked up some feed and two more chicks that will lay eggs eventually). More giggling commenced in the back seat on the way home... three chicks that are a week (or less) old.

Much handling of chicks took up the rest of our afternoon and evening (plus lunch with Uncle Drew and a nap). Liam can't get enough of our chickens who live in a box in my sewing room. Their names are Yellow, Peanut and Caramel. Liam's is Yellow, Daddy's is Peanut and mine is Caramel. Liam let us each have one of his chicks... so nice to share!

You can see all three days worth of photos HERE.

Monday, March 17, 2008

St. Patrick Day Easter Eggs

We had our friends over tonight so our kiddos, Joslyn and Liam, could decorate Easter eggs. First they put stickers on the plastic eggs, then they dyed the hard boiled eggs. They dyed their hands too while they were at it!

After eggs, the kiddos played and started watching a movie. They get along so well together... so we took advantage of that and we parents played Apples to Apples. We had a great time!

The kids didn't want to stop playing when it was time to say good-bye, so we took them upstairs to jump on the bed for a bit. They were so cute! Squeals and lots of smiles!

Note: The next day all Liam could talk about was "Joshwin."

Friday, March 14, 2008

Friday Night Water Colors

This is the first time we've attempted paints. Daddy went to bed early and Liam was wired to the max. So this is the only thing I could think to do that would keep him busy until his bedtime. He absolutely loved it! I knew he would since I can already tell he's a budding artist, but he loved it even more than I could imagine! I've already picked out one of my favorite pieces, I am sure it will be one of many (in time).

He is one focused little boy!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Wednesday Night Tidying

Liam loves to "bac" whenever he sees a (dry) mess. The vacuum is the "bac"... and it's requested mainly when the cats have made a crumby mess around their eating area. Cat food is always tackled first, and then it's on to the rest of the house if his mother allows it. This evening, I knew there was a lot of Liam's own messes under the table and I gladly moved a chair out so he could "cwean up, cwean up" under there. (He learned the clean up song in nursery at church and always sings it when it's time to pick up toys or whatever.)

Such a great helper!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Tid bits

~Liam knows all of the alphabet... I don't know when it happened but it's been in the last month or so that there are no more mix ups. And the letter O is not a "kircle" anymore, it's an "O!" I thought it was pretty cute that all zeros and O's were circles to him. And lowercase L's were the number 1, but not anymore. His counting has improved greatly too. He goes into the high teens now.

~Last night during dinner, Daddy asked Liam if we should go camping sometime soon. Liam got all excited and said, "Yeah! Pamping!" So of course the rest of the evening we took a few more opportunities to have Liam say the word camping. "Pamping!!!"

~Liam was such a big helper last night. I got a spring cleaning bug in me, so I'd invite him to help me with a few things. He helped wash the front picture window, inside and outside. He cleaned the kickboard of the front door (and I cleaned the rest of the door). He helped me vacuum the stairs and also helped pick up his toys.

~Liam has had a hard time going to bed the past week or more. The time change kinda compounded the matter. Last night we were getting pretty impatient as we wanted to watch a movie and Liam just wouldn't go down without many screaming requests from his bedroom. I finally related to Ian, after he asked what we should do, that I was going to bring Liam down and take him on the front porch to cool off and give him a talking to. (It was pretty hot in his bedroom and with the added carrying on, we knew he was probably sweating at this point.) So I went up and grabbed Liam, stood at the top of the stairs with him as I counted to 3 for him to stop crying and get himself together. (He's been taught this trick as going downstairs is a big treat when it's bed time.) The crying ceased and I made my way to the front door and out. I talked to him about a warm bed verses the cold front porch. I went on about how nice his bed is and sleeping outside would be sooo cold. I then told him that Daddy is not going to "cuggle" him (this is always the main request from Liam). Daddy is only going to cuddle Mommy from now on. "So, are you ready to go back to your warm bed to cuddle your silky, blanky and pillows?" Yes was his reply and with him repeating the phrase Daddy "cuggles" Mommy, we headed up the stairs. I put him in his bed and we didn't hear anything more from him.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Kite Flying

Saturday was another half lazy day. We hung around the house all morning. I did some chores and Ian worked on his truck a bit. Liam enjoyed keeping Dad company outside. He threw rocks into an empty barrel and ran around the yard helping me pick up sticks.

After lunch and great naps for all, we got ready to go kite flying. We had picked up a couple kites at Wal-mart for only a dollar each (Elmo and Winnie the Pooh). And Ian found a cool polyester tiger shark kite at Sam's Club.

We picked up some fast food at Wendy's on the way to a park that had a lot of open space. Ian put together the shark and I put together the very simple Elmo kite (though I put it together wrong so Ian fixed it up later so it would actually fly and not twirl).

Liam would chase the long kite tales and jump so high at times to reach them! He was giggling and running everywhere. He just loved being outside playing with his parents. He did well holding the kite string once we had the kite flying high in the air. He'd pump his arms when he'd see it start to descend and then it would go back up higher. We were pretty impressed with his kite flying skills (for it being his first time).

You can see all the photos HERE.

We ran a lot of other errands and Liam was well behaved and in good spirits most of the afternoon and evening. We had one meltdown at the mall because he wanted to push the stroller, but he couldn't steer well enough to NOT run into oncoming traffic. Oh the screeching horror of a tantrum in an echo-y mall! He was relentless for about 10 minutes, but we got past it and he was great the rest of the evening!

We went to a little Mexican/Salvadorian restaurant on the way home. Liam was so good as we waited for our food. We were dancing to the polka music and we were asking him silly questions. I was so happy with him. Ian was too. He got a proud look on his face and said, "I love my family!"

It was sweet day.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Liam makes cake

Tonight after dinner I wanted to make a pineapple upside down cake. I put the butter in the pan to melt in the oven. I then started to crack the eggs, etc. I realized Liam was in the living room misbehaving for his dad. So I called him in to help me make a cake.

He ran right to me all excited to do something fun!

First, he stirred the cake batter and did pretty well. He kept the whisk in the bowl and batter didn't fly. Yay!

I took the pan out of the oven with the melted butter. I told Liam that the blue glass was HOT. Do not touch the blue.

I showed him how to place the pineapple in the pan. The first one he tried made some butter fly, but I showed him how to do it with no splashing. He placed all of the slices so perfectly! I was so proud of him for that and NOT touching the blue pan in the process.

I opened the Marciano cherries. I showed him how to take off the stem and place the cherry in the middle of the pineapple. He then took the stems out of each cherry and placed them as I had directed! Wow! I didn't even flinch when he would squeeze each cherry and get the red juice dripping down. A mess I could worry about later so he could focus.

I got out the brown sugar. I would give him about a tablespoon at a time to dump on each piece of fruit. He'd notice that he was missing the target each time, so he took it upon himself to spread the sugar around with his fingers. It was so precious how focused he was on his job.

Next he helped me pour the batter (and that is when Ian came in with the camera). When we got it all done, he licked the whisk and loved it!

I thanked him for helping me make a cake. He excitedly skipped around saying, "Hep make cake! Hep Mommy Cake!"

DELICIOUS! Awesome work, Liam!

Goo goo goggles

Yesterday I put on my glasses before we left the house, something I rarely ever do. Liam looked at me with a tilted head and said, "Daddy's gwasses!" I told him that Mommy has glasses too and reassured him they were not Daddy's. Then he says, "Wee-um gwasses!!!" I said in reply that we'd find him some glasses really soon!

That evening we took a trip to Wal-mart as a family. I found my sun glasses and handed them to him (as both Ian and I still had our glasses on). He did his cute little tickled giggle and said "GOO GOO GOGGLES!!!"

I had to laugh! Dr. Suess really has an influence on my toddler!

He immediately put them on all by himself!

Liam wore the glasses into Wal-mart. He's becoming one of those toddlers that insists on wearing weird items in public. He always carries his blue Lightning McQueen car. This morning, all morning, he wore his doggie harness back pack, a glow necklace, shoelaces and wouldn't let go of one of my "orange" ear plugs... and don't forget "boo car" in the other hand.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Auto-Rama and Aquarium

Saturday Liam had a runny nose and the chappy face to compliment it. He was up almost every hour Friday night into Saturday. So after a long lazy morning of recovery (and Liam's noon nap), we headed to the Auto-Rama car show in SLC. Ian has been wanting to go since he heard about it. Chappy and I decided to join him.

It was a feat keeping Liam from touching all the pretty cars, but he did well over all. We took turns chasing him, holding him and helping him push the stroller. He got to see Lightning McQueen and also got a giant pretzel all to himself!

We were due to meet up with Josh & Katie at 7pm for dinner (and it was only 5 when we ran through the snow to find our car). We decided Liam needed a kid friendly place to run around and touch stuff. So we went to the aquarium close by.

Liam loved skipping around, pressing his cute head against the jelly fish tanks, splashing in the sting ray pool and chasing other kids that were there.

Liam was such a good boy all through dinner with our good friends. He started "hiding" under the table when he was all done eating, but we soon left so all was well. We then went to hang out with Kari, Adam and Jayci. Jayci is the happiest most charming baby on the planet. Her peek-a-boo skills were very impressive! She is one smart little girl! I loved her cute little voice too!

Liam fell asleep on the way home. He transferred well to his bed and woke later around 11pm so I could give him his medicine and change him into his pajamas. Such a sweet little groggy guy.

Monday, March 03, 2008

Uncle Blake's Christmas photos

Better late than never is what I say. I love the photos that Blake took. Here are only a few. He's got a great camera! Now I need to put them into the Christmas montage I made.

Grandma Dixie made us all pajamas! Liam and his monkey have matching ones!

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Liam Sunday Feb. 24, 2008

I found Liam in the shower lining up his Hippity Hoppity Frogs on Sunday afternoon.
He was "hiding."

Later he was using his hat as a neck basket to carry around guns and whatnot.