Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Dear Monica

You are 18 months going on 3 years.

Shoes. Always the shoes. You are your mother's daughter.

If I could describe you in one word, it would hands-down be passionate. Whatever you do, you do big. When you hug, you throw your whole self into it. When you laugh, you belly laugh. When you run, you run until something stops you. When you kiss, you get really into it (hopefully that ends before you start noticing boys). When you share, you share with vigor.

This expression is pretty typical. Especially to people sitting behind us a mass.

You constantly surprise me with how fast you pick things up. Apparently the benchmark for children your age is to have about 7-8 words in their repertoire, plus Mommy and Daddy. Our list for you passed 100 words two months ago, and we're still hearing new things fro you every day.

Expressions: passionate.

You can be so patient, and always very persistent. You never give up on the first try. It's incredible to watch you work away at a task... we can almost see the wheels turning up there. I think that's why you've become so good at using a fork, coloring with intention, and even drinking out of a big girl cup (which you also do passionately, which results in a lot of cleanup).

You get along pretty well with big sister. You always want to be involved in whatever activity is going on, which usually results in you following her lead until you get the gist of what's going on. You love your baby brother, and you bring him toys to see and you tuck him in with blankets when he is sleeping. Even when he fusses, you look intently at him, mumble "Toys," and then bring some baby toys to him. If he continues to fuss, you repeat until something (or someone) calms him down. You have such a big heart!

"Washing Baby Clive."

Your favorite things to do right now are reading books (always in someone's lap), taking objects in and out of some kind of container, and carrying around stuffed animals (right now it's Champ, the blue Care Bear that Daddy got for you). You aren't a fan of bedtime, but if you're not tired you usually sing and talk to yourself quietly for a while, until you're tired enough to cuddle up with a burp cloth (constantly sucking on them) and a plush toy). Your favorite foods are mac and cheese, toast, and pasta. I'm guessing you get your love of carbs from, well, I guess both of us.

Fresh off of a nap space cadet.

Monica Jane, you are strong, determined, resilient, and loving. I could cuddle with you all day, no matter what books we read 68,385,694 times (I'm looking at you, Pout Pout Fish). You are growing so fast I can hardly keep up. Remember that you will never be lost i the shuffle, sweet girl. I have a Monica shaped place in my heart just for you. You are going to do such big things... I just hope I can keep up with you enough to witness them. I love you so much, Monnie.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Clive Anthony: Our first month

Is it cliche of me to comment on how fast the time has gone by? Yes? Ok then I won't.

Clive was born four weeks ago today and it's already hard to remember what our lives were like before he arrived.

He still sleeps most of the day, and if he wakes up in a good mood no one really knows because he is so quiet about it. He just opens his eyes and looks around and waits for someone to come and talk to him. We have just started to hear his first coo's yesterday, and his voice is just as cute as I imagined it would be. He's absolutely precious. When he wakes up hungry, though, that's a much different story. He's a 0-60 kind of baby: sound asleep, and then about 10 seconds after he wakes is screaming for food or to be changed (in less words, of course).

He loves to be held and cuddled, which big sisters are taking full advantage of, especially Celine. She's becoming a little mother hen to him. Monica took a little bit to warm up to him, but now she'll hold him once in a while and gets excited when we bring him into the room.

The first couple of weeks were a bit of a whirlwind. We are so blessed to have had family come and offer their services to us when Joel went back to work. The girls loved all of the extra attention and cousin time and I was incredibly grateful for the company and extra hands while I recovered and adjusted to being outnumbered by my small children.

Clive was baptized by his Grandpa (Joel's deacon dad) two weeks after we brought him home. It was a hectic weekend, but most of the family was able to make it back for the occasion, which makes my tired, emotional, mommy heart so full.

I wish I had taken more pictures of everyone together, but as you might have guessed, my hands were a little full. ;)

He still has his handsome head of hair with no signs of loss yet (yay!). He loves the bath IF he is completely fed/changed/burped, otherwise he screams bloody murder the whole time. He's eating like a champ and sleeping in 3-4 hour stretches during the night, which I can live with for now. He's been in newborn clothes up until recently, and now they're starting to get a little too snug (depending on the brand).

Clive is definitely a pacifier kid, which is fine by me. He loves to be rocked, and it's usually one of the fastest ways to calm him down when he's fussy. All in all, he's a grand baby. I feel like with the girls being so busy right now, God threw me a bone with Clive. I don't know him well enough to know if it'll always be this way, but I'm savoring every moment of snuggles with this handsome boy.

And to my dearest son,

I can't wait for you to discover the whole new world that you're in. I love you more than I can put into words. I wish I could spend all day just loving up on you. You are perfect, blessed, and very loved. I am so glad you are a part of our family. I'm confident God took one look at the four of us and said, "They need Clive." He sent us you, and you've made our family more whole than we were before. You are so special and I love love love you. So do Daddy and your sisters.