Monday, January 28, 2008

Best Shot Monday - Birthday boy

Last year I was able to take a picture of Ben on his birthday at exactly 9:48 - one year to the minute after he was born. I was about 15 minutes early on this picture, but we had MOPS, and were already late, so here's the birthday boy. I'm glad I was able to capture this expression - I think it shows a bit of his personality.

And as I went through pictures of his last year, remembering the fun we had I came across this one from April, and couldn't resist posting it. I don't remember what he had for dinner, but whatever it was makes some pretty great hair product!

For more great pictures go visit Tracey at Mother May I.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Happy 2nd Birthday, Ben!

Dear Ben,

For nearly twenty months your daddy and I thought we had been given such an amazing blessing (your sister), and we were so excited that you were coming, but we had no idea what we were in store for. We never imagined how much better our lives could get, or how having you in our family was like fitting another piece into the puzzle - the picture suddenly got a whole lot clearer.

You amaze us each and every day with new things. We think you are brilliant, but we're your parents - I'm pretty sure we're required to think that. But you can count to 13! Never mind that you typically start at 3, not 1, and that you are not usually counting anything at all. 13! Genius!

You like to sing, and your favorites are the ABC's (I'm not sure you say a single real letter in there), Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, Happy Birthday, and Row, Row, Row Your Boat. You will surprise me during the day by strolling in with your guitar and singing me a song.

You still wake up far too early in the morning. Today you decided to start celebrating at 4:30. I was not thrilled. But after you morphed from your usual droning, "maaaamaaaa. MAAAAMAAA!" to true crying interspersed with "ay ahh you, Mama??" (where are you, mama?), I could no longer pretend to ignore it, so up we were. Of course, within seconds of being picked up you sweetly asked, "a gween one, Mama?" requesting your typical breakfast of a green nutri-grain bar. You are irresistible, and you're damn lucky that you are, at that hour of the morning!

You know how to turn on the charm, and you have a laugh and smile that are totally infectious. You melt me every time that you run up to me, and give me a hug or a kiss, and so even though you broke my heart yesterday when I asked if you were my baby ("No! Big boy!"), I forgive you. I love that you are so very ticklish. There is one spot between your neck and your shoulder, and a tickle there makes your legs buckle underneath you as you collapse to the floor, convulsing in giggles. Your feet are ticklish, your knees, your chubby thighs, your tummy, your ears, your neck - almost every inch of you. Frequently when tickled until you can barely breathe, you wait a moment to catch your breath before loudly exclaiming, "Gain! Gain!!" (Again! Again!!)

You fancy yourself a comedian, and you think it is incredibly funny to ask me if all of the people we know are in our house. You will run down a huge list, and you ask each question with a lilt on the end and a twinkle in your eye that lets me know exactly how funny you think you are. Finally, when you can hold it in no longer, you will explode with laughter. Yesterday it was after you asked me if there was a "di-no-roar?" (dinosaur) in the car. I wish I could put your voice on here, so everyone else could experience what I am so lucky to be able to every day.

You have a bit of an aggressive streak, and are currently in a big hitting mode. We are trying to curb this by frequent use of time-outs. So far no luck. Sometimes you will hit, and then put yourself in time out. The problem is that you are so happy-go-lucky, that most often, while you are in time out, you are swinging your legs, tapping your feet, and having a grand old time with whatever thoughts are racing through your head.

One of your more recent habits is that frequently, after I read you a book, you will then climb off my lap to the floor, and sit down to open the book back up and read it to yourself. I watch as you turn the pages thoughtfully, and occasionally say a few words aloud. I hope that you love reading like I do, it will let you experience so many things.

You have become quite attached to your "bwanket", and have to have it for naps and bedtime. We, also have another new bedtime tradition. When we go in your room, you request "snuggiepuppy?" in your most hopeful voice. So I will sit in the glider, and rock with you while I sing the song to you. At the end you reach up to me for a kiss, and say in a quiet voice, "tank you, snuggiepuppy!" I hope you will always be my snugglepuppy, little man. I love you so very much.

Ooooo, snugglepuppy of mine,
Everything about you is my favorite kind.
I love what you are,
I love what you do,
And oooooooo -
I love you!

This last year has been full of all kinds of milestones, and I have loved being right here to experience them with you. I can't wait for a lifetime more. You are an incredible little boy, and you are so very, very loved.


Monday, January 21, 2008

Best Shot Monday - Pete!

Aunt Sarah (who photo-blogs here and here) and Pete (sometimes referred to as Meat by the kids) were here for the weekend as they had a wedding in town. Here is Pete with the kids last night, shortly before he instituted the rule "no books during football".

Visit Tracey over at Mother May I for more exciting Best Shot Monday pictures!

Monday, January 14, 2008

Best Shot Monday - playground fun

On our last full day in Texas Claire and I (and Brian) were driving each other a little crazy in the confined space of our hotel room while Ben napped, so I got on the internet and found a park nearby that had a playground, and off Claire and I went (after a stop at the drive-thru Starbucks - how I wish there was one of these near my house!) It was just the break (and exercise) that we needed.

Tracy has moved Best Shot Monday over to Mother May I, so check in to see some other enjoyable shots.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

And did I mention?

With the new year, comes some new contests. The lovely ladies at 5 Minutes for Mom are at it again - this time helping moms build New Habits in the New Year. So stop by to check out the great prizes to get your year off to a more organized start.


Happy 2008!

Well, we're here in the new year. Like most, I have that sense of a fresh start that typically accompanies the new year. I have dozens of "resolutions" floating around in my brain, but I haven't officially decided on any yet. I did mention on New Year's Eve that I hope to run another 5K this year, so I guess that one is out in the public eye now. The rest are still to be determined.

We made it through the holidays, and everyone seemed to have a good time. Despite Ben getting sick, it was a nice few days. Christmas dinner turned out wonderfully, and although I would do things a bit differently next year, all in all it was delicious. (Many thanks to my parents for their willingness to chop, saute, wash dishes, and assist in whatever other way was needed.) We sat 13 at our new dining room table, and enjoyed a lovely time with both of our families.

We had a short, but wonderful, visit in Texas where both kids loved seeing their Papa Jim and Uncle Dave, and of course, playing with Dolly and Max. The plane ride went more smoothly than I could have imagined - both ways! (Pictures to follow - soon I hope.)

We flew back on New Year's Eve, had a few hours at home, and then off to spend the evening with our good friends. We had a wonderful time, lovely food, good wine, and you have not lived until you've watched six little kids dancing to Abba and Staying Alive about 3 hours past their usual bedtimes. It was a wonderful evening, and I hope will lead to many more in the new year.

Now we are back home, and looking forward to some quiet. Though, that rarely seems to happen around here. So many wishes for a wonderful new year, that is all that you want it to be - and more!