Day in the life: Spring 2015

The date is Friday, April 10, 2015.

I’m 33
Dave’s almost 33
Henry is 5 1/2
Ben is 3 years, 2 months
Ellie is 7 1/2 months

I was due for a work day for DITL. I’m typing it up nearly a week later. Pretty sure this will be my most brief DITL but hey, at least I did it!

4:50 a.m. – Ben wakes me up, calling out from his room like he often does. He comes into my room and I tell him it’s way too early to get up and take him back to his room. He’s awake in there, though, and occasionally talking so I’m awake for the day now, too. Second day in a row of a sub-5 a.m. wake-up for the day and I’m really not happy about it.

5:30 a.m. – Ellie wakes up. I bring her into bed with me to nurse her because I’m exhausted and just want to keep laying down, but then Ben’s back, too, and his rolling around is too distracting for her, so I take her into her room to feed her in the rocker like usual. I bring her back to bed after she eats and she’s wide awake and happy. Ben’s being whiny and asking to go downstairs, even though it’s not even 6 a.m. yet.

6 a.m. – Time for me to get in the shower so Dave takes Ben and Ellie downstairs. Ben asks Dave the same thing he asks every single morning – “When we get downstairs, can I have Cocoa Cuffs (not Puffs – Cuffs – and it’s actually chocolate Cheerios, but whatever), yogurt and a Chew?” He repeats it multiple times on the way down the stairs. I shower and Dave brings Ellie upstairs when it’s time for him to shower. I put her in her room to roll around on the floor and play with her toys, and after a few minutes she army crawls out into the hallway and I can tell she’s filling her diaper. I change her and go back to getting ready. She crawls through the hallway and into her brothers’ room, and it makes me nervous to have her near the stairs (even though we have a baby gate up, but still) and to be in their room where I can’t see her and she might find something small to put in her mouth. So I put her in her bouncy seat – which she’s really too big for now – outside the bathroom door and continue to get ready. She poops a second time, the little stinker.

7 a.m. I finish getting ready and head downstairs with Ellie. The boys are on electronic devices, surprise surprise. I want to say no, and yet, what else am I going to have them do first thing in the morning? Watching TV would be the alternative, and they’re probably learning more on their devices. Whatev. Dave works later on Tuesdays and Fridays, so these mornings are slightly more leisurely for me since I have help. The downside is that he obviously then gets home later, too.

Dave’s made coffee – Shelly brought us some Tim Horton’s stuff from a recent trip, and it’s yummy. It’s Friday so it’s garbage day, so he hauls the trash from the back to our bigger garbage cans by our garage. I make and eat breakfast, feed Ellie breakfast, get my bottles and pump parts packed and get dressed. Shelly arrives while I’m upstairs getting dressed and I try to snap her picture through the window but it doesn’t work out so well. Henry’s asking me to come down and watch one of his Zumba dances, which we just discovered this week and which I posted about the night before this. When I get down there, he’s too self-conscious to do it in front of all of us, so he says someone needs to leave the room. “You or Shelly.” So Shelly gets up to get coffee. But then he doesn’t want to do it in front of me either. So I go into the kitchen with Shelly.

I hang out and talk for a few minutes, and before I leave I snap a selfie of me and Dave, and she asks how I did it without pressing the button on the front of the phone. I show her that she can use the side buttons and her mind is blown. I make fun of her saying that yeah, my mind was blown when I first heard about that, too … like three years ago. She laughs and then flips me off, which surprises me coming from my sweet Shelly! Ha.

        

8:10 a.m. I leave and head to work. Takes me 15-20 minutes usually. Can’t remember if I listen to the radio or listen to something It Works-related. I go back and forth. Get to work, pour myself my coffee and check social media and email.

9 a.m. My team has our morning meeting, and since it’s my coworker’s last day before maternity leave, she has brought a big cookie cake to share, and I have to pass since I’m currently on day five of the Whole 30. She has also brought some scarves and hats she no longer wants, so after the meeting, a couple of us go into her office and claim a few of them. I have her take our pic.

9:30-4:30 Work day is normal. Blah. I have a brand new iPhone 6 that I just got earlier in the week and I’m loooving it, especially the fact that I don’t have to put a passcode in anymore and it just recognizes my thumb print! For lunch I have lettuce wraps with lunch meat, bacon and avocado, and they’re surprisingly super satisfying. Brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes on the side – mmm. When I’m done I run to the store since we need a few things, including something yummy for me and Dave for dinner tonight. Friday night means pizza night in our house, and this is our first Friday on the Whole 30. I get myself some salmon from the case and him some nice marinated chicken breasts from the case. It’s really nice outside and I curse having to go back into my office for the rest of the afternoon. Soon it’s raining, though, and the lights in our office flicker a few times. I pump twice, at 10 and 2, and I have my Greens at 3.

           I leave just before 4:30 and head home, careful to not forget my groceries in the fridge! Get home at like 4:50 and greet my kiddos as I’m putting down my armloads of groceries. It’s always crazy town when I walk in the door, total noise and chaos as everyone greets me and tries to talk at once. I have Shelly take our picture on the couch for my DITL post. Ben’s eye is pink and a little crusty, and we hope he’s not getting pink eye. It’s fine in the morning, thankfully.5 p.m. We tell Shelly good-bye and to have a great weekend. After spending a few minutes with the boys, I head upstairs to change into comfy clothes and nurse Ellie. Snap a few selfies while in the rocking chair and marvel at how much I love love love this and how much I’ll miss it when we’re done. I put a headband in Ellie’s hair because it’s always in her face and I think it must drive her crazy!

     5:25 p.m. Get the pizzas from downstairs, preheat the oven and make my dinner of salmon, cauliflower and baked potato. Ellie’s in her bouncy and stays occupied with a Baby Mum Mum. While I’m cooking and trying to get Ellie’s food prepared, too, I’m in and out of the bathroom with Ben about 10 times, as he’s having poop issues, like always. The kid is terrified to poop – on the toilet, in his diaper, anywhere. He’s pooped on the toilet twice ever. Usually, though, after much, much misery on everyone’s parts, we give in and he poops in a diaper every few days. I can’t get over the amount of poop and poop issues in my life right now. Oh dear God I just can’t wait til the kid finally decides he’s ready to poop on the toilet. I sure didn’t realize at the time how lucky we were with Henry, who peed and pooped on the toilet at 2 1/2 and never looked back! Eesh.    

6:35 p.m. We’re sitting down eating when Dave gets home, and we’re all happy to see him. He makes his dinner and sits down with us, and we talk about our day, eat and then clean up. Henry’s doing crafts and comes up with some really cool things, per usual. Tonight it’s guys from Minecraft, as he’s officially obsessed with that game right now. He’s so proud of everything he creates, I love it.

I ask him if he wants some strawberries for dessert with me, and he looks at me incredulously. He says “Strawberries aren’t dessert! You know what’s dessert? Dessert.” Cracks me up. Touche, kid.

    7 p.m. I take Ellie up to bath, one of my favorite times of day, just me and her hanging out. I take her pic on the bed and realize she’s pooped again – such a pooper today! I clean her up and put her in her little pink tub. She loves the bath and splashes happily, and when I ask her “where’s Elmo?” she looks around for the Elmo cup until I present it and she beams and grabs for it. She yells into it and puts it in her mouth for awhile, and then I use it to wash and rinse her hair. I get her out and we make faces in the mirror, and I tell her for the millionth time that she’s the cutest girl on the planet.

7:30 p.m. I put her jammies on and sit in the rocking chair with her and she attacks my boob as if she’s super hungry. She conks out within about five minutes, per usual, and I sit there with her in my arms longer than normal tonight. All sounds peaceful downstairs and I’m in no rush to get the boys to bed, so I just rock and snuggle her. Awhile later I stand up, hold her for another minute since I just love that feeling of her weight in my arms as she sleeps, and then I put her in her crib, zip her into her sleep sack, give her a kiss and head downstairs.

8:15 p.m. Bedtime for the boys. Henry and Dave sadly inform me that Henry’s Zumba videos that he has just fallen in love with have been taken down due to copyright issues. What bad timing!

We only read one book tonight since it got kind of late. Ben asks me to scratch his back and then Henry asks, too, so I scratch both simultaneously and tell Dave to take a picture since my phone is sitting right beside me. Why I have to ask, especially on a DITL day, is beyond me but whatever. ;)

8:30 p.m. Ben comes out of his room and says he has a hang nail, so I clip it and then clip all his nails because they’re really long. I snap a pic of us sitting in the bathroom and then send him back to bed. Downstairs Dave settles in to watch the Brewers game. Usually I use this time to work or clean up or do some yoga, but I am just exhausted from the week and already ready for bed. I head up to bath by like 8:45.

8:45-10 p.m. Somehow despite heading upstairs super early, I’m still not in bed til 10:08 p.m. But that’s really early for me and it feels good! I use the bath time to read a bit of the book I’m reading, The Aviator’s Wife, which I’m really enjoying. It’s the first book I’ve read for pleasure in a loooong time, I’m sad to say! I check on my sweet sleeping kids, Dave tucks me in and I happily go to sleep.

  And so

And so concludes another installment of Day in the Life!

Brother things.

So many things that kids do and say fall under the category of ‘things that make you go hmmmm….’

We all had our weird behaviors and sayings and silly games as kids, and now it’s really fun to watch my kids start creating their own. Kids are a constant source of entertainment, that’s for sure.

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There are a few things with Henry and Ben right now that I want to remember.

The first is “Dustin Boy / Cutie Boy.” Apparently if you’re a Dustin Boy, you’re a cool guy, and if you’re a Cutie Boy, you’re not. It’s pretty much the worst thing ever to be called a Cutie Boy, and the boys will argue at length over which they are. “I’M a Dustin Boy and YOU’RE a Cutie Boy!” “No, I’M a Dustin Boy!!”

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The second is this:

“You’re a BIIIIIIIIIG chicken, and I’m a … chicken.” (Cue hysterical laughter.)

The BIIIIIIG chicken is said in a loud, deep voice, and the second chicken is said in a tiny, quiet, high-pitched voice.

They repeat it over and over and just laugh every time. So odd.

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And the third one just happened last night, and it’s a good example of the random things that make them laugh.

They were brushing their teeth before bed and I used a flosser on Henry. (since he went to the dentist a couple weeks ago and has THREE cavities! Yikes.) He said it was like a toothpick, then he said to Ben “hey Ben, when I was a baby, I called it a “too-pick.” And he said the last word in a silly, high-pitched baby voice. Ben cracked up, so Henry said it again. Then Ben said it, and they went back and forth like 50 times.

I just love these moments between them, when they’re talking and making each other laugh, since they fight the other 90% of the time! I know they’re glad to have each other, though. :)

It gets better and better. 

Parenthood, I mean.

I realized this tonight as I watched Henry dance in the living room for us, performing his heart out in front of his mom and dad without a twinge of self consciousness. My heart was bursting and I sat there on the couch next to Dave in total awe as we watched our first kid – a real KID now – dance with such endless energy and unbounded happiness and pride. It was one of the hugest unexpected surprises I’ve experienced in a long time, and I never want to forget it. We sat for a good 15-20 minutes as he danced his way through four different songs, and I thought once or twice that I should grab my camera, but I’m glad I didn’t. The moment was too special to interrupt.

Earlier this week I searched ‘Zumba for kids’ on YouTube in an effort to find something fun and active Henry could do while cooped up in the house during this dreary spring break. He immediately loved it and started watching the same songs over and over again, learning the moves and dancing up a storm in our living room. Just days later, he’s like a pro. The kid’s got moves!

We headed up to put the boys to bed just a few minutes ago – past their normal bedtime thanks to the performance – but I stopped Henry so I could take his pic. I told him I wanted to remember this night always.

I feel like it was a pivotal moment in my parenthood journey. Here I am mourning the fact every day that our baby/little kid years are passing so fast, but I saw tonight with my own eyes how the best is yet to come as we get to watch these little people we’ve created find their interests and talents and joy in this world. To experience all that through them is going to be something really special.

  

This girl breaks my heart.

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This week Ellie cut her first tooth. She went down the slide at the park and squealed with delight. She just switched to size 3 diapers. And last night, I put her down on the rug in her room and she scooted five feet on her belly to get to her toys like it was nothing as I watched, stunned.

I knew my third baby’s babyhood would go fast, but I had no idea just how fast. My heart actually hurts – physically hurts – when I’m with her these days. It’s a painful reminder of how much time I DON’T get to spend with her, and of how big she’s getting, and of how in the blink of an eye she won’t be a baby anymore.

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I feel a desperate, panicked feeling sometimes, and it’s really not fun. And yet there’s nothing I can do. I work full-time and I can’t change that at this very moment, as much as I wish I could. I have two other children who I love so much and who need attention, too.

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So when I’m with her, I do all I can to drink her in and savor every single second. I smother her in kisses and smell her smell and pinch her fat little baby thighs and cheeks and just pray for time to slow down for me.

I don’t want another baby, but oh, I don’t want this baby time to end. I could cry thinking about it, truly. The love I have for this most beautiful, sweet, precious little girl is seriously just too much sometimes. I almost can’t bear it. And yet I know how LUCKY I am to be her mom, to get the time with her that I do, and to know that she’s in safe and loving hands whenever we’re not together. And I know that there’s so much awesomeness to come. But I still wish time would slow down for us.

Ellie is 6 months, 3 weeks old

Another quick Ellie update

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This girl was 27 inches and 15 lbs at her six-month appointment this week. She got three vaccines plus the flu shot, and it was traumatic for both of us.

She had her first touch of sickness the night before her appointment – had a fever and threw up her dinner, which was sad but luckily didn’t last too long. Between that and her shots and what I think might be her first teeth trying to poke through, she has been quite the crankster the past four or five days. Wanting to be held constantly, whining and crying a lot, and waking up once or twice a night. The sound of her cry is a new one in this house – she’s honestly only cried a handful of times, like ever. We also think she’s wising up and starting to understand that whining and crying will help her get her way faster. It’s pretty funny how she’s turned on the dramatics the past few days! We’ll see if it’s just a little phase or if this new more demanding Ellie is here to stay. ;)

We’ve been slow to introduce many foods yet just because she hasn’t been that into eating the past week or so. She’s tried carrots and sweet potatoes and bananas so far. I also said in her 6-month update that she hadn’t said mama or dada yet and then the very next day she said not one but both of them. Which is kind of crazy, since usually dada comes first and then mama comes months later! But this girl got the mamamama sound down and started using it nonstop, especially when feeling tired or unhappy. I even got a video of her saying it on command!

Got this picture a couple days ago, about a week after she turned six months old – but better late than never. I can’t believe what a doll she is!! Shelly was in Mexico this week so I had off Wed-Fri to be home with the kids, and it was really nice. I so enjoyed the extra time with my little lady!

Ellie, you are six months old!

My sweet Eleanor! You are six months old today!

A whole half of a year you’ve been with us, and even though it seems like you are growing up SO fast, it also feels like you’ve been here a long time! Being pregnant with you, the weather being warm, being on maternity leave, you being teeny tiny – it all feels like ages ago. And yet I know another six months will pass in what will feel like the blink of an eye and boom – you will be one and our baby days will be officially over. It makes me really sad to think about, even though I know that kids just get more and more fun as they get bigger. But there is just nothing in this world like a little baby, and knowing you are my last makes me very sad sometimes.

But if I could have dreamed up the most perfect baby to round out our family and end my baby years with, I couldn’t have picked a better babe than you, my girl, and for that I feel incredibly blessed and lucky. You’ve been a dream boat since the day you were born, and just when I think you couldn’t be any more amazing, you get MORE amazing.

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As ridiculous as I know I sound, the words that come out of my mouth nearly every day when I’m with you are “I can’t even.” Because … I just can’t even. I can’t with that face of yours, that hair of yours, that squishy baby body of yours. Your smell, your snugglyness, your smiles and squeals. You are the just … just … aughhhhhhh. I can’t.

I could gush about you all day, but I think a better use of my time here will be to get down some facts about you at six months old. Because those I know I’ll probably forget. The rest I won’t!

– Your hair is out of control. I love it and it adds so much to your personality, but it’s getting a little crazy! It’s over your ears and in your eyes and the top still won’t lay flat, no matter how much I comb it. Headbands have gone from something I put on you once in awhile to make you look cute, to something I put on you most days, even with just your sleeper, to keep the hair out of your face. It’ll be very interesting to see how your hair style evolves over these next months and years. This girl thing is all new to me, letting it grow! Both your bros had their first haircut before they turned one year old.

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– You’ve been rolling for quite awhile and love to roll across the room and roll to reach a toy or other object, like the remote control, or cords you shouldn’t have. You can suddenly sit up quite well, though you’ll still topple after awhile if we don’t put support around you. It’s so fun to watch you play with toys, and I will tell you that even your toys bring me such joy. A pink picnic basket! I have a girl!

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– Truly, I’m still so over the moon that I got a daughter after two sons, it’s as if I just found out, even though it’s been nearly a year already since we found out you were a girl. I take such delight in your clothes and your room and your toys and your sweet little demeanor. I adore your brothers, but when they are fighting and running and being so very loud as boys tend to be, I think to myself Lord thank you for giving me a daughter for #3! Heaven help me if I had three boys running around. ;) I obviously would have welcomed that with open arms, and I did expect to have a boy. But the fact that you’re a girl – well, I’m still just tickled pink over it on a daily basis!!

– You’ve been eating baby oatmeal for about a month and you’re a big fan. We increased it to two meals a day pretty quickly, and last night I gave you your first veggies – carrots! You seemed unaffected by the first few bites, but then you started making faces. I ended up mixing the rest with some oats and breast milk to tame the flavor a bit, and you polished it right off. Next up will be sweet potatoes, and then bananas and some other fruits – yum! Then I suppose we’ll just start giving you little bits of what we’re eating before long – I’m so excited to introduce you to all kinds of new foods! Please, Ellie girl, be a better eater than your bros! All babies love veggies and fruits and pretty much all foods (beans! avocado! meat!) when they start out – but I hope you will keep on loving them!

– Speaking of breast milk, we had a little slip-up earlier this week that has me nervous about our ability to make it to a year with just breast milk, but I’m holding out hope we’ll make it. Long story short, you don’t go to daycare and so I don’t have as much control over your milk intake or our milk supply like I did when the boys were babies. I put my fresh milk in the fridge, and then Shelly feeds it to you the next day. Sometimes I freeze milk, and when I do, I throw it in the freezer and forget about it. Shelly has been kind enough to rotate out our stash, putting newer stuff downstairs and bringing older stuff up. When I went to Florida last month, I knew I had quite a bit in the freezer, like enough to last you at least three times the length of time I was actually going to be gone. I pumped and dumped the whole trip, getting rid of probably 50+ ounces of milk over those couple of days. Well the other day Shelly said hey, you know that you only have a few bags of milk left in the freezer. I was totally taken aback. But then I thought well, come to think of it, I haven’t actually frozen any milk in a long time. I just assumed I had a freezer full, since I always did with the boys. With Ben, I actually donated a ton of it because I couldn’t use it fast enough. But now with you, we’re almost out!

With the boys, I pumped at work as well as at home. With you, I’ve been lazy and I only pump at work, twice a day – very rarely do I pump at home. At work I get about 15 oz., and you drink that and a bit more while I’m gone, so Shelly’s been dipping into the freezer stuff regularly.

So anyway, we’re almost out. I’ve pumped a couple times at home to try and have a little extra to freeze, but I never get much at home, especially since you’ve often just eaten. We’ve switched to just putting water in your oatmeal instead of 4 oz or so of milk. And we do have like seven bags left, so maybe I can keep up and build a little stash back up. I don’t have anything against formula, and if we have to give you some formula bottles if we run out of breast milk, so be it. But of course, I’ve come this far with all of my babies having only breast milk their first year, and you’re still such a great nurser, I’d just like to make it all the way if I can! We’ll see, I guess.

– You’re sleeping through the night pretty much every night now and it blows my mind. I’ve never had a baby who sleeps all night and I honestly didn’t think I’d get one! You’re usually up around 5 or 5:30 to eat and then you go back to sleep til 6:30 or so, but I certainly consider that to be all night! You sleep in a sleep sack and you like to roll to your side and sleep on your side now, and I cover you with a blanket even though it makes me nervous. But we live in Wisconsin and even with the heat cranked to 70 or 72, your room gets chilly at night, and I feel terrible if your little hands or cheeks are cold!

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– You’re not really on a set nap schedule, but you do nap twice a day most days. Sometimes your morning one is the long one, other times your afternoon one is your long one. But you seem to really enjoy sleep, not fighting it like my boys always did as babies.

– You smile constantly and even though we all sort of find Henry to be the most annoying person in our house these days (ha), I think he’s your favorite. No one can make you smile and laugh like Henry can! You also adore your daddy, though you still prefer mommy. You love Ben, too, but he’s more indifferent to you, so I think that makes you more indifferent to him. He’s smitten with you when he actually pays attention to you, but he’s often just doing his own thing and not really focusing on you!

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– You’re talking up a storm these days, working on your consonant sounds and babbling “ba ba ba ba.” No dada or mama yet, though! You also love to SCREAM, like a ridiculously high-pitched scream that has us all covering our ears. It’s funny and adorable, but also deafening.

– I feel like I just switched you to 6-month clothes and now you’re growing out of most of them already. Your growth has just exploded this past month or so and you suddenly feel HUGE to us. Long and chunky and sturdy! Makes me happy and sad all at once!

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– You don’t have any teeth yet. You have your six-month appointment next week. You are starting to be opinionated about things, the most obvious example being with Shelly’s cell phone. Shelly will put you in her lap and let you hold her big iPhone 6, and she’ll put on some Taylor Swift or One Direction and you just LOVE it. You hold the phone and kick your legs fiercely. But when she tries to take it away from you – watch out! You squeal and whine and squirm to try and get it back. It’s quite funny! You also LOVE your jumperoo right now. You jump like a wild woman in it and and it’s adorable. I never leave you in it too long since I want to hold you and hang out with you! But it’s great for when we need to get things done – you will happily stay in there as long as we need you to!

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So that’s you at six months old in a nutshell! You’re just the best, Ellie. I am so beyond happy and privileged to be your mom. You are more beautiful and sweet and awesome than I ever could have imagined, and I am SO excited to keep watching you turn into a little person. Happy half-birthday, my love!

Love, Mommy

Dear Benny (3 years old)

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Dear Benny,

My sweet, crazy 3-year-old baby boy. Happy birthday, buddy!

I’ll be honest. I almost didn’t write this, but then I looked back and saw I wrote your brother a letter on here when he turned three years old, and it made me feel guilty. I’m sure this is just one of many instances like that that we’ll face over the years, since Henry’s the first and you’re the middle, and it’s just reality that the “first” of everything gets more attention. And Henry gets to go first.

I’m the oldest in my family, so I never knew what it was like to be a middle child. Your daddy is the middle, though, and because of this, he feels like he has a special bond with you. I can tell you with certainty, though, that you are loved beyond words and appreciated for the unique and amazing little person you are!

I mean, you give us a run for our money on a daily basis, let’s not kid ourselves. Three was a tough age with your brother and I wonder if it’ll be tougher with you. Some days you give me hope that three will be more awesome than not, but then other days, well… other days, you don’t. ;)

But you’re a cool little dude, Ben. You demand so much less attention than your brother does, and it’s a breath of fresh air most days. You play so well and have a big imagination and you actually enjoy being by yourself. You love playing with trucks and cars, you enjoy drawing and painting, and you love the new Playdoh you got for your birthday. Not surprisingly, you’ve developed a love of technology, asking every day “can I play on the tablet?” and more recently, “can I play the sports game, Mom?” The second you wake up you’re asking these things. Daddy recently got a Kinect for the XBox and you always want to play the bowling and boxing games. It’s hilarious to watch you get so into it, and you can really hold your own for a just-turned-three-year-old.

I need to start writing down more of the things you say, since you crack me up all the time. Last night you asked to play with glue and said “I want to glue some macaroni and cheese.” I give you pasta to glue, and it’s funny that you call it macaroni and cheese. The pins on the bowling game look like milk jugs to you, and this morning when you were playing you said “Mom, I knocked down five milks!” When Henry does something naughty, you say “Henry, you’re a dork.” You like to tattle on your brother, too. “Mom, Henry’s not sitting on time-out!”

You’ve been an incredible talker since you were a baby, and even now it astounds me how far beyond your age you sound when you speak. You’ve known your numbers and letters and colors for a very long time now. You hop on one foot and move with grace and throw a ball like a champ. You can cut with a scissors with ease and hold a pencil and pen just how you should.

But then there are other areas of your development that sometimes make me scratch my head. When I ask you to pick something up and tell you exactly where it is, you’ll look right past it. The other morning you came into the bathroom and said “is daddy still home?” and I said yes. You asked “is there someone in the shower?” and then “Who’s in the shower?” I mean, if it’s not me in the shower, who else would it be? You still scribble when you “draw,” and as we’ve talked about at length, you won’t poop on the darn toilet. But we’ll get there.

You give unprompted hugs and you say thank you in the sweetest way for things I do simply because I’m your mom. “Thanks for wiping off my face, Mom!” and “Thanks for buttoning my pants, Mom!” You can turn on the sweet like nobody else I know. Today I read back through posts tagged “Benjamin” and was reminded of just how head-over-heels in love with you I was for your first two plus years of life. You’ve always been such a snuggly, loving, happy child. Of course, I’m still in love with you! It’s just different since you’re not a baby anymore!

Your birthday has come and gone, and it was a good one. The morning of your birthday you woke up and came downstairs to a new trampoline – a perfect gift for my energetic little man! All day whenever I wished you happy birthday, you responded with “Happy birthday to you, too!” or “Happy birthday, Mom!” Shelly brought you gifts, too, and that evening after work we took you to Stone Fire Pizza Co. for pizza and some playtime. You rode a motorcycle and played games and jumped in the bounce house and had a blast. It was a fun family night! Then Sunday we had a big party for you, serving brunch since breakfast is your favorite meal – though you didn’t really eat anything besides cake anyway. I did make you eat a pancake and a piece of sausage before I’d let you have a second piece! You got lots of cool presents and were mostly a polite little guy. We were all exhausted when it was over, and I realized you would have been happy as a clam without having a party, but I’m still glad we did it for you. Next year we’ll keep it smaller, though.

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Your smile for pictures makes me laugh out loud and wince at the same time. You’re a character and a half.

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You’re my baby boy, Benny, and I love you so much. I can hardly believe you’re three years old already. You lend such a unique and delightful element to our family and I feel so very lucky that you are ours.

Love, Mom