Thursday, December 22, 2011

Dear Moe (22 Months)

Christmas is just around the corner, my love, and I’ve been so busy getting ready that your letter is a few days late. But you are 22 months old now, and it’s been a wonderful month.

I know that next month, your letter will be full of how much you enjoyed Christmas, but the preparations and anticipation have been so much fun with you. We have a wonderful wooden advent calendar that we’ve been enjoying. Every day, you ask us to take it down from the mantle and you open a little door and I take out a tiny little wooden ornament that we hang on the little wooden tree. It took a few days for you to understand that we only open one door, once a day, until Christmas. That’s our mantra now, and you have no problems accepting it. But we'll see what happens December 25 when you're out of doors!

Santa also sent you a video message through Portable North Pole, and you absolutely loved it. Santa said your name, had photos of you in his big book, and knew that you’d worked very hard this year to always listen to your parents. He confirmed, through a fantastic machine run by his elves, that you are indeed on the “nice” list. You have enjoyed watching that video every day since Santa sent it.

I also did something crazy and baked cookies for us to decorate. (There is no doubt that I love you, my sweet boy. I don’t attempt to operate an oven for just anyone.) You had a great time decorating the cookies with icing and sprinkles, but you voiced your rather negative opinion of my culinary skills. Aunt Janine and Uncle Mark were over, and Janine asked you, as you munched thoughtfully on your gorgeous cookie artwork, “Is that a good cookie?” You turned it over, looked at the rather burned bottom, shook your head and said, “Nuh-uh.” Thanks, baby.

Last Christmas, while lovely because it was your first, was hard for me because I was weaning you and was very hormonal and emotional. This Christmas, you are making the anticipation and wonder and magic so real, and I love you for it so much.

You are very playful and fun. You love to play the “whoa” game, which started at day care with Robin’s oldest son, Noah. All you had to do was tap his chest gently, and he’d fall backwards, saying, “WHOA!” Now we play this at home. You love to “push” us over, and sometimes we pull you with us. You love wrestling on the cushion in the living room. We had to make sure you understood that Granny, who was recovering from eye surgery this month, was off limits for the “whoa” game. That took some time.

You still love your bath, but you have started crying whenever we have to do the “business” part where I wash your hair, face and body. You’d much rather be left to play and resent that when I’m washing you, you can’t do what you like. When you’re not resisting being washed, you enjoy playing with your colour-changer hot wheels (I give you a container of cold, cold water to dunk them in), you like pouring water from one container to another, and playing with your watering can. (Once it got too cold to play at the water table, I brought all your water toys to the bath tub!)

We have had some lovely outings this month, as usual. We had a fantastic playdate with your buddy Koen. It’s wonderful to bring you there – you are so at ease, and you and Koen really like playing together. They have some awesome toys, and Mommy and Jen are good, relaxing influences on each other. It’s great for all concerned.

We brought you to the annual Mochitsuki – your second time! Last year, you were mostly in the Baby Bjorn, but this time you had a ball at the kids’ craft table. The Magoos joined us this year, which was especially lovely. You and buddies Mistlegoo and Trick walked around the banquet hall by yourselves (they took very good care of you, even if Granny was freaking out at the independence I was giving all of you), you enjoyed the food, you watched the rice pounding, and loved the colouring table. It was a great experience for everyone. We really can take you anywhere.

We’ve had several visits to Grandpa Reg on Saturday mornings. We show up, play in his room for 45 minutes or so, and then we drive him to the Perley to visit Joan. You love playing with the extra (unplugged) telephone he has, and we always bring your little green tote bag of toys. We call it your bag of tricks. I pack it the night before, so you never know what you might find in there. Having said that, you can always count on there being crayons. You love to colour in your steno notebook (nice thick pages that resist tearing when they get wet with drool). Robin notes that while the other kids tend to stick with one colour, you use them all.

Another Saturday tradition is our walk with Uncle Mark, Aunt Janine and Zaphod. We walk around their neighbourhood without a stroller now, and while you enjoy it very much, we often have some conflict about staying between me and the curb. Luckily, the streets aren’t busy, and there are lots of little pedestrian pathways we can explore. At home, you often resist holding my hand when we cross our street, and that results in a bit of a meltdown because it’s non-negotiable. I love being outside with you, but I sometimes dread the power struggles. You don’t understand why you can’t roam freely down the middle of the street.

Mealtime at home with you is still interesting, but overall, you do really well. You can feed yourself pretty much anything, including soup and fruit sauce. You even stack your dishes to let us know when you’re done eating! You sit in a booster seat now, instead of a high chair. You drink from a cup at the table, instead of a sippy. You’re growing so quickly. Sometimes, you are so impatient to get your food, though. You holler for it from the dining room, and Daddy says he feels like he’s on a crazy cooking show called Iron Daddy. We often tell you, “Just be patient! Just hang on!”, but words like this are lost on a toddler.

You’re such a helpful little boy. You are fantastic at putting away your toys, and you bring me your snack dishes when you’re done with them. If we ask you to put something in the laundry hamper, you do it happily. We’re enjoying this wonderful stage while it lasts. :)

The words are coming fast and furious, too! One Sunday a few weeks ago, it was like something clicked in your head. The two of us were on our own that day, and I had no witnesses, but you said “animal crackers,” “please,” “thank you,” “be right back,” “cheese”, “milk” and “snuggles”. I was flabbergasted. And now you say many of those things regularly. Robin reports that you are really verbal at day care, and we’ve noticed it at home, too. Even if we don’t know what you are saying all the time, it’s clear you’re talking and have things to say. Although, you often say “no” or don’t say anything at all when you mean “yes”, and that can be frustrating.
One really funny thing happened this month. More and more often, you’re awake when I leave the house in the morning. One morning, you clearly didn’t want me to leave. But instead of whining or crying, you sat in my lap, stroked my hair and cheek, snuggled me gently and gave me lots of hugs. After a few minutes (during which my heart was melting – you’re so sneaky!) I told you it was time for me to go. You stood up, grabbed my lunch bag, and ran away with it into the living room. Sometimes, you are just way too smart.

You are so loved at Robin’s, it’s hilarious. When Daddy drops you off in the morning, all the kids wave and say hi, and Alex is usually trying to get your boots and snowsuit off before Daddy has even put you down. They just can’t wait to start playtime with you. You all hit a playgroup every morning, and you love the gym time at Featherston. You and Alex ride the plasma car together. You’re getting very good at circle and story time. One day last week, they bought in musical instruments for everyone to try, and you had a blast. The other day, Robin took you to Alex’s school Christmas pageant, and you clapped after every song.

We’ve introduced you to some Sesame Street, including, most recently, some classic videos on Youtube. You love Grover’s “Around, Over, Under and Through” and “Near and Far”. There was also a sketch of him falling off a camel that had you killing yourself laughing. It was great to see.

You are so much fun. I don’t think we could love you more… and then suddenly, we do. Even with the stubborn-two-year-old-impatient-independence thing going on, you’re amazing and snugly and sweet and funny and I don’t think you’ll ever really understand how wonderful it is for us to have you in our lives. Thanks for being so awesome, Pookie. 

1 comment:

  1. "I don’t think we could love you more… and then suddenly, we do."

    That never stops, btw. He'll be even more awesome at 4 and 9 and 13 than he is now. It'll boggle your mind, 'cause he's pretty darn awesome now!