Sunday, January 25, 2015

Four Years: A Letter

January 13, 2015

Dear Lucas,

I cannot believe you are four years old!  The past four years have gone by so fast.  You have grown into such a funny little boy; you are no longer a babbling toddler.  You are sensitive, sweet, helpful, an excellent big brother and you make everyone feel special:)  You are special!

We began your 4th year in the "little new house" (the apartment we lived in for a little over a year).  You still call it that, even though we live in the "big new house" now.  Right around the time you turned 3, we found out you were gonna have a little sister.  That fact became more real to you the bigger Mama got and the more stuff we gathered into that little apartment in preparation for her.  So after a cold winter and some much needed snow days, we finally moved into the "big new house" and got your new room all ready to go!  You love it here.  You love your room, the backyard, the cul-de-sac and all your little friends around, all the good spots for hide-and-seek and all the room you have to run and play:)  We love it here too, babe, and we hope to spend a long time here!

Then right before summer, your life changed became a big brother!!!  Your little sister Molly arrived and you were so excited!  You were a little nervous, at first.  You didn't really know what was going on.  I know it was scary for you to see Mama in the hospital bed and to see her sick and for so many people to be around, but that moment when the two of you first met; I'll never forget it!  It was such a special, sweet, vulnerable time for you and you were just perfect.  You loved kissing her and "holding" her and you couldn't wait for Mama, Daddy and Molly to come home:)

Mama is totally brave putting these pictures up, but they perfectly capture all of our emotions that week.  It was hard for Mama because you weren't my "baby" anymore and it seemed like you grew up over night!  It was hard for you too and I prayed so hard over that time.  Once we got home and it was just the four of us, all your worries and fears seemed to vanish and you went into total big brother mode.  You were my little sidekick...putting in her paci when she was crying, throwing diapers away, making her smile, being quiet when she was sleeping, kissing her, helping to hold her bottle and feed her, and the list goes on and on.

This past summer was pretty different because of Molly.  Daddy was busy with baseball and Mama was trying to figure out this mom-of-two business, so we didn't go on near as many adventures as I would've liked.  But, we did swim as much as we could, we spent a lot of time in the backyard and we just enjoyed each other and got to know this new little baby:)  You were just awesome!  I can't wait to see your relationship flourish over the years.  She's going to want to do everything you do!  I know you're going to be such a good example for her and I know she'll probably get on your nerves once in awhile, but I also know there will be nothing that can separate your love for each other and how much you'll protect her.  That's so neat to me!  I never had a big brother and you're going to be an amazing one:)

Some highlights of the summer were: your first time in VBS, many trips to the Children's Museum, lots of playtime with Boston, your first sunburn, cooking with Mama, the 4th of July, going to the zoo, and just running around and exploring the new neighborhood!!

Fall came all too soon and you started back at Ms. Kelly's, but with sister this time!  You started writing your letters (including your name), drawing stick figures, you worked hard on learning your sounds, worked on counting to 20, started recognizing your numbers, dressing up, keeping an eye on Molly, making new friends, and having so much fun!

When fall came, it got really busy!  Daddy was very busy with softball, we were busy with softball games, the fair, a trip to the pumpkin patch, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and lots of family time:)

You really started to love Super Heroes this year and Legos.  You got several of these little sets this fall and especially for Christmas.  You love to build the pieces, but you LOVE to play with the characters:) You like to switch their heads and legs around and make new characters and you are really good at keeping them off the floor so sister won't eat them!  You have a great imagination and you are very particular, so Legos are perfect for you.  You've also gotten very good at puzzles and have several 48-piece ones that you can put together all by yourself!  Once you put them together once, you can do it so quick the next few times.

You have also gotten really good at riding your bike.  You had a tricycle and we thought you'd never learn to ride it.  You would get so frustrated and you wouldn't even try to pedal.  Most things come easily to you; but when something doesn't, your stubborn side comes out and you just flat out won't try. When you finally got the hang of it, though, nothing could stop you and it got too little very quickly.  So, you got a bike for Christmas and after a few days of getting used to it, you can ride up and down the street so fast sometimes we have to run after you to catch up:)  Once we were watching from our house and you turned the corner to go to the next street before we even realized what was happening.  I hadn't seen Daddy run that fast in awhile:)  You love playing catch with Daddy and kicking the soccer ball around.  You also love going to the park and climbing on everything:)  You are getting pretty athletic:)

You are wearing 4T shirts and your 3T pants are starting to get too short, but they are still too loose around your waist:)  You are very skinny!  You love to eat certain things, but certain things you eat sooooo slowly!  You aren't too picky and will try anything, but if you don't like it you'll take your time eating it.  You love to tell stories and sometimes you get a little silly during dinner so it can take quite awhile for you to finish.  You love donuts, Cheetos, fried chicken, macaroni, tacos, spaghetti, green beans, apples, peanut butter and jelly, shrimp, sausage, corn on the cob, scrambled eggs, mandarin oranges, pizza, carrots, cereal bars, waffles, fig newtons, and all things gummy!  You have a typical 4-year old palate:)

You still take a nap everyday, but every once in awhile, you wake up pretty grumpy:)  You sleep great, but wake up pretty early (even on Saturdays)!!  You love to take baths and you LOVE to take showers.   You have so much energy and one of your favorite things to do is wrestle with Daddy!  You love to jump on him and I really wish your Grandpa Doug was here to teach you some moves!  Poppy does a good job, though:)  You love all your grandparents so much and they love you too!  You also love Aunt Cassie, Uncle Cal and Boston, Aunt Megan and Uncle Bo, and you really wish Uncle Josh, Aunt Jana and Colt lived closer!  We FaceTime with them as much as we can but you ask about them all the time!  The rest of them we see pretty regularly (except not Aunt Megan and Uncle Bo as often as we'd like).

We ended the year with a bang!  Christmas was great and we had so much fun creating new traditions with you and Molly!  We loved the Christmas Train, driving around BA looking at lights, going to the Christmas Eve service at church, doing our special Advent Nativity, and celebrating Jesus' birthday:)  You and Molly make Christmas even more special and I hope we do a good job teaching you the true meaning of the season:)

The last celebration was your birthday party!  We had a small family party here at the house, but we went all out on Super Hero decorations:)  You loved filling out the invitations for everyone and loved setting the table!  You got so much for Christmas, it was hard to decide what to get you for your birthday.  We got you a LeapPad and you are loving having your own "iPad" (it's what you call it!) and  you have a game where you write your letters and you're getting really good at it!  I love that you love educational games.

It's been an amazing year with you and you are just too much fun.  We've had some interesting "discipline" times, but you are very sweet and you are figuring it all out.  It's been a joy to be your mama and I'm loving watching you grow up.  It's so sad, but so fun all at the same time!  I look forward  to all your going to accomplish this year.

Daddy and I love you so very much and we are so proud of you:)

All our love,
Mama and Daddy

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Seven Months: A Letter

December 28, 2014

My sweet Molly,

Wow!  What a crazy, busy month it's been!  I can't believe this year is already almost over!  You had such a busy December experiencing new things and seeing new things and it was so fun to experience them all with you:)

You had a lot of firsts this month!!!  You met some of Daddy's cousins and their babies for the first time, met Santa for the first time, saw lights at Rhema for the first time, rode the Christmas train for the first time, attended our church's Christmas Eve service for the first time, and opened presents for the first time!

We've carted you all over during this holiday season and you've just been so flexible and easy-going.  You have adapted and slept great in every different bed and pack 'n play and just kept the best schedule.

You're trying to get your first tooth to pop in and you haven't been fussy at all, but you sure have liked your sleep:)  We've had to wake you up every morning and after every nap to keep you on a good schedule.  Even when we do this, you just roll over and give us the biggest smile and start kicking your legs:)

Your typical schedule (over this holiday break) has been like this:
- We wake you at 7:30 for 3oz of oatmeal with banana and 1oz bottle
- Play and go down for a nap around 9-9:15
- We wake you at 11:30 for a 7oz bottle
- Play and go down for a nap around 1-1:15
- We wake you at 3:30 for another 7oz bottle
- Play and eat a veggie (we are introducing fruits this week) at 5:30 and eat 5-6oz bottle
- Get ready for bed and eat another 4-5 oz before going to bed at 7:30

You don't take much to go to sleep...just your sleep sack and your paci.  You rarely go to sleep on us (when you do, we just melt) and you are getting really good at putting your paci in yourself.

Your playtime mainly consists of rolling all over the floor until you get stuck and mad and we need to come rescue you:)  But every once in a while, you will push up on your hands and pull your knees under you and try to scoot.  You mainly go backwards, but you'll get the hang of it.  You love to kick and bounce, especially when we sing "Ride a little horsey, go to town...".  You also are great at sitting up and chewing on everything!

You are still wearing 3-6 month clothes, but you can wear some of your 6-9 month too.  You are wearing size 3 diapers, but your little shoes are still 0-3 month.  You have the tiniest feet and the tiniest toes.  I want to remember those;)  I also want to remember how you play with your hair (especially when you're eating), how you smile so big but no sound comes out, how interested you are getting in our food, how you are starting to give kisses, how you try to roll all over when you're on your changing table, and how easy Daddy can make you laugh.

Brother still thinks you're amazing and so do we:)  You are so happy-go-lucky and you have the sweetest disposition.  We are so thankful for you; our greatest gift this year!

We love you so much,
Mama and Daddy