August 31, 2011
Hallelujah you're napping again! Whatever that weird phase was seems to be over. Now you are sleeping 8pm-7am at night AND napping two hours in the afternoon. The result is a much happier Matthew AND a much happier mama. I am so thankful!
You are getting to be a big helper around the house. You can put your clothes in the hamper and throw your diapers away, of course, but you also do the wastebaskets every day and you've taken on putting away the clean silverware. It's a good “matching” exercise for you though I get the feeling it doesn't challenge you a bit.
I told you that you were starting preschool today and you were quite excited. While the other kids did school you played with a Playmobil toy at the table nearby. You watched the Spanish video with us and “listened” to me read aloud while climbing and running around. I hope we can continue to work it out so that you can feel included and important while still allowing me to work with the other kids.
A month ago we went on a big family road trip: first camping in the Tetons with Papa's family followed by a family reunion in Estes Park, CO with Grandpa Daryl's family. You did great the whole time. You slept in – even in the tent. You rode nicely in the car (you had your own little movie screen to watch Curious George – your favorite). The only trouble was getting you to sit in the high chair for meals. Once you put your mind to resisting something, you don't give up easily.
One day we spent driving through Yellowstone. We stopped by the lake to skip rocks, then hiked down to the Lower Falls (almost gave your daddy a heart attack having you near such a drop-off). We stopped by the paint pots and saw Old Faithful. The funniest was when we asked you near one of the pots of boiling mud, “What is that, Matthew?” You replied, “That is for the buffaloes to cook their marshmallows.”
You are so imaginative! You are my first child to actually play with little people and trucks and such at such a young age. You'll put together a little playset with a couple “guys” and some cars then drive them around. They even talk to each other and have names like “Beckham” or “Papa”. You'll have a whole story line, “He is going to Wynoming and then he will have bananas for his breakfast.”
You are a very funny eater – ever since you were a baby, actually. But now you will utterly refuse certain foods on one day and inhale the same thing the next day. If you had your way you wouldn't eat meals at all – you would just nibble all day long. When you do eat meals your preference is to eat just the one thing you like best. For example, you'd eat all your eggs and beg for more before touching your toast or banana.
Anyway, your dimpled smile and funny little voice - “I not Maffew, I Matt-Matt” are just so darling. I can't ignore outright disobedience but I sure can overlook a lot because you're just so cute the rest of the time.
October 23, 2011
Wow – we've had an intense month together, Matthew. We moved you to a bunk bed so that Elise could have the crib. After a few weeks of doing very well, you decided not to stay in your bed at naptime anymore! You got a lot of spankings and cried a lot, I asked for a lot of advice and cried a lot. I am seeing less resistance (finally! After a month of consistent discipline and getting out of your bed up to a hundred times in a day) and am hopeful you are starting to understand that I really DO expect you to stay on the bed (if not to nap, at least for a quiet time!) Anyway, I thought that for something different this time I would describe your relationships with each member of our family.
Dad. You adore your Daddy. You run to greet him when he gets home from work and you are always on his lap when he's at the computer, at his side when he's playing piano and in his way (sort of) when he's trying to work on the house! Just today he was putting up some siding and you were insisting that it was “my air compressor” and “working”. You kept asking when it would be time to use the drill and whether Daddy was ready for the nail gun. Nothing makes you happier than a little one on one attention from him and nothing makes you sadder than a sharp word from him.
Me. The intense determination of your personality can be hard for me – especially with you not napping in the middle of the day – by the end of the day both of our fuses are short. But I adore snuggling you, reading you Curious George (over and over and over), having you in the kitchen “helping” me cook (the other day I found a candle and a teapot full of water in the fridge – you've also been known to stir boiling pots of water and man the toaster). Our favorite little game is when you're grumpy and I ask you, “Where's your smile?” and we point to all the different parts of your face until we've “found” it.
Isaac. You adore Isaac. You want to be “big like Isaac.” The whole time we were at his soccer games you would be kicking a ball on the sidelines, and you're always carrying a ball around asking him to play baseball with you. That said, you often clash too. You want things just so, Isaac refuses, you hit and scream, Isaac hits and tattles. . . it can degenerate quickly. But I think you will be just what the other needs as you grow older.
Abby. You adore Abby. You two play VERY well together. Often while Isaac does his additional “first grade” work you and Abby are left to your own devices. Sometimes you end up dressed in a tutu, playing Barbies, or being the “baby” to her “mommy” but you always have fun. You guys also often help each other with chores. She has more chores than you so I think she's got the better end of the deal.
Elise. You are very sweet to Elise. I was worried that you would not be gentle but you always are and you've never hurt her. I am grateful! She watches you closely and I pray that you two will be great friends one day. You call her “my baby E-WEESE.”