Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Turning Two

Well, I'm seeing that we definitely have a "Christmas baby", as it's taking me this long to write about his birthday, and also took me until this week to feel my usual grief that "My baby isn't a baby anymore!". It hit me on Wednesday, this feeling of . . .  remembering his birth and all the stages between then to now. Judah's name means "Praise", and do we ever praise God for this precious life that we get to watch, nurture, enjoy, and shepherd.

We celebrated the day (our first day back after Christmas) by doing things Judah loves: french toast waffles, dressed him in his best comfy duds, the nursery kids sang to him, nap time bliss, Eden Prairie Center for play and Potbelly's by a fireplace (one of his fave things lately, fireplaces), home for birthday cake ice cream and the opening of and dancing to the new Okee Dokee Brothers CD. I think it was a Judah tailored day and we soaked in the celebratory mood.

One of my favorite things was how sweet Karis was to him all day - attentive to his wants, trying to make the day special for him. She loves her little brother tremendously and says at least a few times a day, "I'm so thankful I have a little brother!"

I've been updating his baby book and it's always amazing to re-live the memories of his birth, and I can't believe he's 2.

And boy is this guy 2. As I write this today (after composing in my head for weeks) I'm exhaling after a day of my boy coming up to me repeatedly with things in his mouth that shouldn't be there, needing every crayon broken (his new thing), pleading (read: screaming) to listen to "Opera Singer" one more time in the car. Oh my healthy, vibrant, personality plus little son. I do love him. I do love how well he sleeps.

A day in the life of Judah right now:

He wakes up around 7 (although he's getting up earlier lately), happy and raring to go. When I go into his room he's usually looking out the window while clutching to his pootsie. He'll now join me in singing "Rise and Shine!", and then wants me (and Karis) to name everything in his room, he says "baba!" while pointing to: noise machine, heater, humidifier, pooh bear, window, diaper . . . I get him dressed and we head downstairs where he often wants to be held while I get breakfast ready - or we sit down to read from his Hug a Bible for a bit (Daniel and the lions always the favorite, or any story with birds). Play, breakfast (loves frozen blueberries, yogurt with applesauce and oatmeal, french toast, egg puffs). Play (with Karis of course) . . . the morning flies with little people playdates while K is in school, he loves to drop her off and pick her up (and visit the slide and waterfountain in the hallways, and on special days the fish in her classroom) and we do enjoy the quality time together.

Home for some dancing and lunch, whisk away to nap - he often sleeps from 12:30 - 3 (it's awesome). Up for play, bundle up and go outside, sometimes a play date or errand, bang on the piano, melt down and get into trouble, pull stools up to the counter to try to get a treat, scoot around on his scooting toys, color or eat crayons, slap his sister when frustrated, give her hugs to make up (by burrowing his head into her shoulder), name the people on our fridge (Mee mee! and Marco are faves) and just do what toddlers do. He follows Karis and adores that girl like no other.

Trev gets home at 6 for dinner, and he runs to "dada" (finally stopped calling him "mama" just last week). We eat, and then he scurries up with big sister to get his gummies, dance around and enjoy some time with daddy (read: momma gets some quiet . . . for a few minutes, until he scampers back down the steps yelling "Ma maaaaaa!" and then runs to my arms with a huge smile, bright eyes, and gigantic giggles. I love this routine. We go back up together and lay on our bedroom floor for some Big Picture Story Book Bible, prayer for baby bellies and friends (while he climbs all over Trevor).

I bring him to his room for what has become a sweet bedtime routine: rock and read I Love You Through and Through (where he loves to point to his hair and eyes when we come to that part) and then read-sing a sweet little You Are My Sunshine book that he loves. He started singing along. Then he turns toward me and while rocking and eye gazing we sing Jesus Loves me Together - he loves to get to the "so", he can say that. His little singing voice and expressive eyes and pure joy. I could take this for many more years and hope it's so.

He's still attached to his beloved "pootsie" blanket, sucks his thumb to sleep (but not often at other times, unless he's insecure and uncertain). He's gentle and loves babies: "Baby!" and will often give them sweet hugs and get so excited.  When he hears music his eyes light up and shoulders start to shimmy. He loves hamburgers. He points out birds and dogs with enthusiasm. He is joyful and exuberant, cautious and observant, focused and intense in his own ways. His eyes are so beautiful and speak of zest and spunk, depth and calm.

People - you know it's not roses, right? It's easy to write this in baby-book fashion, for the sake of progeny. Also, the deep thoughts and time to write don't often coincide these days. Thanks for staying with me. I wonder what I'll think years down the road reading this? I would imagine I'll miss these days, and probably think they were relatively uncomplicated and completely fleeting.

A recent relevant quote: 

From Beyond the Bedroom Wall (Larry Woiwode):
(talking about memories of this character's children) ". . . whole seasons of and aspects of her children, that their lives as a whole were lived within such short and brightly illuminated early years . . ."

Judah at 2:

- Loves to color
- Loves to break crayons in half (and if he can't break it, wants you to)
- New love is chapstick, and not just any kind. It has to be pink (as in Minnie Mouse or Starburst). I call it his precious
- When you ask how old he is, he'll answer "two" and try to hold up a couple fingers
- Loves vacuums, needs to be held while I use it and crawls up me like a monkey who can't get high enough. He's hilarious. We happen to see a lot of vacuums around and he has to point and name each one.
- Says "no" when I try to sing and dance
- Points to his diaper and say "da pa" and have me say "diaper"
- When he hears the word "popsicle", he wails until he gets one (which is a problem when there aren't any, and Karis decides to say the word)
- His name for popsicle is "pah-skah"
- When he does have a popsicle, he loves to do "cheers" with Karis
- When he has anything that Karis has, he loves to do "cheers" (says "choo!" while bumping items)
- New words: "on, ham, pizza, coat, mall, snow, hot, hat, home"
- LOVES, HAS to have "Cake" on in the car. The song "Opera Singer" in particular
- Has started marching, and wants me to say "marching" while he does it
- Sings "Jesus Loves Me" at bedtime (in his own language, of course). It's the best, he's on my lap and we make eye contact and he rocks back and forth while facing me in my lap and I look forward to this every day and will always treasure the memory
- Lately he thinks every building is a mall: "Maaaaahhhh!" is exclaimed in the car often
- He pulls stools up to whatever surface he sees something of which he's not supposed to have
- He shakes his head to say 'no'
- He makes "ee ee ee" monkey noises while scratching his armpits
- He loves his boots, all boots, putting on boots and walking around the house (his, Karis's, mine, Trevor's)
- He knows where to go for the cookie at Cub: "cu-cuh!"
- I caught him one morning wearing Karis's socks on his hands and scrubbing the toilet. Why did I not get a picture?!
- He is often peeking out of the window from his crib when we go get him

Karis-isms (can't not write about this girl even in Judah's birthday post):

- "Well you know it's your responsibility to figure these things out" (when I was asking her opinion of what we should do to make Judah's birthday special for him)
- "Daddy, can you put on black metal?" (music the kids enjoyed carseat-dancing to on the trip to ND)
- "How about you get a cheap one at Target? That's not too much moneys" (when talking about getting a seat cover for Judah)
- "Well, it's kind of complicated with my slippers" (while carrying a laundry basket)
- "P.S. - we're out of straws"
- "She'll be coming around the cul-de-sac whens she comes . . . " (sung while pushing Judah around in a chair)
- "Oh mom, you'll feel better after a good night of sleep"
- "Let's play freeze tag in the cul-de-sac!" (so fun)
- "You have to hold your breath when we enter the neighborhood until we get to the garage!" (a game she likes to play)
- "Let's not talk about that, let's talk about princesses" (said to our friend Jacob, who asked her about princesses. Professor Karis gave a wonderful informative lecture, very memorable)
- "Let me whisper something into your ear" (the new thing)
- "Oh boy, I'm gonna sleep like a log tonight!"
- "Judah, let's have a block party!" (literally, with blocks)
- "So momma, is a mango an animal?"
- "Well, I want Judah to get what he wants, but it's just so complicated" (when talking about Judah wanting to break her crayons)

budding musician
do we look like we just returned from some long travels? 

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to all and to all a thick mustache!

Merry 6th Day of Christmas, by now . . .

I can't help but write down a quote from Pilgrim's Inn that beautifully captured Christmas with children (the reading of which coincided crazily with Christmas, I was blessed):

"And as it turned out, Christmas was for all of them, the grownups as well as the children, a day of sheer delight, one of those magical times that are not forgotten while life lasts, a time when it seems as though nothing can go wrong . . .

" . . . but it was the children who mattered. It was the children who were the point of it all . . . "