I can hardly believe that I have a two-year-old already. Your big brown eyes and dimple and adorable little grin get me every time. I know you don't like to stop and give hugs but I just have to pin you down for a few throughout the day--as I tell you often: "Mamas need hugs." You make your Daddy and I laugh a lot, sometimes on purpose, sometimes not. Life with you is a joy!
A few weekends ago you climbed out of your crib twice. The first was Saturday afternoon after your nap. Daddy was working in the basement and I heard a big thump and then you were standing in the doorway to the living room (I was nursing Silas). It took my brain a minute to realize that you actually got out of bed yourself. The next morning I was feeding Silas in the living room and your Daddy was still in bed, when we heard a very loud bump from upstairs. Bryce said he looked quickly at the monitor and you were on your belly on the floor, looking up at the crib. It must have startled you, because you haven't tried climbing out since!
You love for us to sing songs to you--The B.I.B.L.E., Jesus Loves the Little Children, This Little Light of Mine, My God is So Big--and just now you're starting to sing a little bit with us, especially if there's a part of the song that repeats a lot. You'll yell "The Bible" at the end of The B.I.B.L.E. and also "blow" and say "no" during This Little Light of Mine. But your favorite song is "Jumping Up and Down." I started singing it to you here and there, and then one night at bedtime you surprised me by actually requesting it, except you couldn't really say it (sounded more like "Dumping Dup 'an Dawn") so it took me awhile to figure it out. Such cuteness.
The dog is still your best friend, by far. Parson pretty much crashes during your nap time because you bother him all morning long. Lately you've been trying to ride him like a horse--maybe encouraged by your father just a little bit. He's such a good dog and puts up with you, even "playing" with you. You also still love your "friend"--but he usually lives on top of the refrigerator during the day so that you don't carry him around. Because when you have him, that means you're usually sucking your thumb, and for awhile you had sucked it raw. It looked so painful. We're trying to curb that a little bit.
Justus, you are such a good eater, for which we are very thankful. I should clarify: you eat whatever we put before you (and I mean, everything) and you even ask for odd things, like raw mushrooms, which you seemed to enjoy. BUT you do not like to feed yourself (unless it's something you love, like fruit or veggies). Oh, you're very capable but just not interested in getting the food from the plate to your mouth on a fork or spoon. So your Dad and I usually end up feeding you, which makes meals take forever, but at least you're eating and hopefully soon you start doing it for yourself.
I love it when you say: "ex-cusem-me" after you burp or need to get past someone's feet on the ottoman. I could make a list a mile long of all the cute things you say and the way you say them. So much talking these days--and your little brain is constantly making connections and then saying them! which never ceases to amaze me, especially when you make little sentences all on your own. It is an amazing thing to see a little man learning and growing, all day long--our God is amazing! The other day at dinner you prayed for the first time. You folded your hands, put your head on your hands, and then said "Thank you, Jesus. Amen!" And it made me thankful that the main thing you've picked up from our prayers is that we say "Thank you" to Jesus. May that always be true of our prayers--that they are a place of gratitude.
Sometimes I'll be working downstairs and you suddenly are quiet and I find you upstairs, just playing. It's so cute to see you playing with the stuffed animals or the dishes. Other times, I find you with lotion from the bathroom all over your face--that happens too. You like to get into things . . . a lot. I'm pretty sure that's normal.
In the mornings when Bryce is working and I get you out of bed, our conversation goes something like this:
"No, Daddy isn't at home today."
"Yes, he went bye-bye."
"Yes, Daddy is at work today."
The only color you can consistently recognize is purple and you can count to 2. The other day I had a pillow behind my back when I was sitting on the couch and you got a pillow to put behind your back, and then you said, "Mama's pillow. JD's pillow. Two pillows!" But when we ask you how old you are, you say, "Three!" or "One, two, three!" We're working on it. Daddy taught you how to shake hands (and you make sure to stick your thumb out) and we ask you every time we shake how old you are. It'll come, I'm sure. Maybe by the time you're three.
For your second birthday, Daddy built you a step-stool so that you can join us at the counter in the kitchen, and I painted it blue. You were so excited to have a present to open. We got "birthday donuts" and stuck a candle in one and sang "Happy Birthday" to you at breakfast (since Mama and the two boys were heading out of town that morning). We also got 10 balloons and filled a big trash bag full and you loved playing with them for over a month, until you discovered the joy of popping them and within a day they were all gone. Later that evening we went to Grandma and Grandpa's house in Fort Wayne, and Grandma hung up a "Happy Birthday" sign for you (which you loved to point out) and made you a birthday cake. It was fun to celebrate your second birthday!
So many things I want to remember and cherish and soak in about these days with you. I know they are precious and going by entirely too quickly. Oh, Justus Daniel. Your Mama and Daddy love you so.
|Painting with watercolors (and wearing dad's shirt as a smock)|
|This is normal|
|Brushing hair before church|
|Opening up presents on his birthday|
|I was getting ready in the bathroom, and JD brought in his toys and his friend|
|Visiting Bryce at the fire station|
|Doing the dishes|
|JD likes to sit in Silas' chair|
|Riding the carousal at the Children's Museum (he didn't want to sit by himself)|
|Playing at the Children's Museum (notice the tongue sticking out in concentration)|
|Jumping, always jumping|
|This is also normal|
|And this is pretty usual around our house|
|Working with Bryce in the basement|
|Wearing dad's glasses|
|Hanging out with cousin Eli|