Sunday, August 15, 2010
Oh Matthew, you have been so sweet and endearing lately. So few crabbies and so much cuteness. I thought this day might never come, but here you are! Daddy and I just sit and watch your darling silliness then look at each other and sigh that we wish we could keep you so little. You make silly squeaks and bounce up and down whenever you feel “watched”. You know it will bring laughs. And if something drops or spills, you’ll get a mournful look and say ‘Ohhhhh”. If you get hurt, it’s a mournful “Owwwww” along with a presentation of the offended body part for kisses.
You’re starting to talk so much – you’ll try so much more than you used to. I think your first sentence was “Bye bye Daddy”, but “More tic tac” runs a close second. (Whenever Isaac and Abby get a piece of gum, I let you have a tic tac so you don’t feel left out.) Just this morning I said “All gone” and you repeated me exactly. And you just babble too – very unlike the other kids. You’ll just talk and talk and talk – sounding like you’re trying to say something but I have no idea what. You’ll read books to yourself that way too. Speaking of which, you have been bringing me books several times a day now and sitting while I read them to you – your favorite is currently Eric Carle’s “Brown Bear, Brown Bear”.
We went camping at Center Lake a couple times last month and you did great! I think we wore you out so much that you just went right to sleep in the tent every time and slept through the whole night! You really loved the lake, which is such a change for you. I had to really watch you because you’d just start walking into the water, deeper and deeper, without really any concern for your own wellbeing. Dirt, sticks, rocks, sand, water – you have really embraced everything outdoors and I love watching you explore. You even picked a pretty little flower and brought it to me the other day – you learn so much by imitating your big brother and sister!
You are really a master of fine motor skills. I am very impressed by your ability to scribble (staying on the paper), build block towers, feed yourself with utensils, even pour water back and forth between containers. At this point you’re a little bowlegged, so you trip a lot when you try to run, but when it comes to using your hands to push buttons, open and close things, etc., you are really good!
You’re still very determined, of course. Generally you do seem to want to please, but when I have to correct you, you often repay me by hitting. Our biggest problem is (ironically) our newly fenced back yard. One gate doesn’t have a latch on it yet and you have made it your mission in life to get out the gate while my back is turned. So I can’t really let you outside without me like I did with Abby at this age. Though as long as we have some water activity going – kiddie pool, sprinkler, water balloons, slip n slide or even just buckets of water – you are quite happy to stay in the yard!
You’ve grown very attached to your little blue waffle-weave blankie. One of my favorite parts of the day is when you voluntarily lay your head on my shoulder and clutch your blankie as I sing before bed:
Your name is Matthew, Matthew
Jesus loves you
Yes, He died just for you and He is risen too
Jesus loves you yes He does, Matthew
Saturday, August 14, 2010
This summer has found you in a different outfit just about every hour of every day. First jammies, then you get dressed in some cute little sundress. Then you and Isaac go outside and “accidentally” get all wet with the hose. So you change into your swimsuit for a while. Then I call you to get dressed for lunch – which means a whole second outfit. But right after lunch you remember you’ve been meaning to play dress up. Off with the regular clothes and on with the tutu. If Veronikka’s over you might even request to play with make-up. And so on. At least you can dress yourself.
We went camping a couple of times last month. You couldn’t stop saying, “I just LOVE camping! Only I don’t like pit toilets.” And we let you stay up late to sing around the campfire. Looking up at the stars, you said, “Nighttime at camping is just AWESOME!” It is so fun to watch you have fun – you’ve turned into a little water bug, splashing in every lake or creek you find. You’ll return again and again to the water, even when you’re shivering cold!
We do a lot of water play at home too, from slip n slide to kiddie pool to water balloons. You and Isaac like to dump buckets of water down the slide to make a “water slide”. We also made a “mud pie kitchen” out of an old side table with cubbie doors to store little thrift store muffin tins and mixing bowls. You’ve had several long afternoons of fun mixing up strange concoctions.
You’ve started skipping a nap here or there, so I’m thinking you may drop your nap altogether a lot sooner than Isaac did. However, I’m very grateful that you are truly DELIGHTED to sit on your bed and look at books! You tell me that you want to learn to read “Alpha-Phonics” in the fall, and I actually really think you may be ready.
I’ve started having you and Isaac pray after our morning Bible reading time and I am amazed at the thought and feeling that goes into your prayers: “Oh God, we just need you so much. Thank you God that you save us and give us grace. Help us to love you and help us to do what’s right. Amen”
Friday, August 13, 2010
This has been a super fun month for you, Isaac. We’ve been doing tons of fun summer play: water balloons, bike rides, wading in the creek, picnics and batting practice at the park . . . You are loving it. You even had a soccer camp for two hours a day for five days. It was so weird because you never wanted to go but then you came home saying you had fun. I think you were taken with your (British) coach, but maybe soccer isn’t really your game.
We went camping a couple of times last month and you still can’t stand to leave. This year we let you bring your bike and ride around the campground loop by yourself. It kept you very occupied and you were so good about watching for cars and staying to the side of the road. You are also very obsessed with making fires and even got a little burn last time because you are so eager to “help”. We camped at Center Lake both times and you just adored the beach time and the fishing. You even went on a hike with Mommy, Daddy and Papa, bush-whacking up the mountain and keeping up very well. I love it that you love outdoors, Isaac!
You have pretty well dropped your nap all together. I still make you lay quietly on the bed for a while, and then I used to let you look at books. Problem was, you don’t really like looking at books – you like being READ to. So Grammie bought you a whole library of Children’s Story Hour cds and you LOVE them. You ask for more and more every day! I am so thankful for this solution so that you enjoy yourself AND I still get some quiet time.
Speaking of reading, you are coming along very well. We still read together every day and you like reading actual books versus the actual curriculum that I have. So I have backed off from pressuring you to do that and instead we are really enjoying the reading that you CAN do! You are excited to start kindergarten this fall (though you wish you were in first grade like several friends). I feel like I am in a much better position with you than I was a year ago, Isaac – I think you will be a willing and eager pupil and I am so grateful.
You got a model rocket for your birthday. Finally two nights ago you and Dad built it and last night we launched it. The look on your face after the first launch was priceless. “WOW – that was so awesome!” Unfortunately after the second (900ft) launch, we lost the rocket. I guess we’ll have to build another one because it was definitely a hit. I’ve been excited that you are building a little bit – an awesome Duplo castle for one. You’ve also been quite taken with making Origami butterflies after reading a story about a girl who does the same.