One of the most surprising (and wonderful) things about our boys is how different they are from each other. Before Sam was born I assumed they would look alike, or have similar temperaments, or maybe even sound alike. But not these boys. In fact, except for the happy twinkle in their eyes and the sweet smell of their heads, they are different in almost every way I can detect. We try hard not to compare them or label them, but I do want to remember all of the ways that they are unique at this age, so I thought I'd do a little snapshot of each of them. I'm hoping I can keep this up over the years to help us remember all the precious little details that make them so special.
Michael - 3 years and 4 months
Favorite way to spend playtime: Playing pretend. All. The. Time. Repurposing trash and/or our belongings as spy gear, pirate gear, creature gear, robot gear, etc. I also often find him sitting quietly, absorbed in books. He loves to be outside "checking on the garden" (digging in the garden while wearing a cowboy hat) or running around in the grass pretending to be a cheetah or a bison. New summer favorites are the splash pad and the swimming pool.
Latest skills: Jumping off of everything, jumping into the pool, swimming with floaties, tracing letters with a pencil (and writing a few without tracing), playing nicely with other kids, sharing (most of the time), does small jobs for money so he can save up for toys he wants.
Words: "I love you so, so, so, so much, Mom."
"I love your hands, Mom. They look like claws."
"How did Sammy come out of your tummy? Did he zoom out of your mouth? Did he pop out of your belly button?"
"I dreamed I was a vole. And we lived in the sublivian (sub-nivian) zone."
"Cheese is my favorite liquid." (He was eating mac n cheese.)
Best way to make him laugh: Physical comedy involving his stuffed mouse, Ralph. Tickling. Also, wrestling around with Sam and Tim, and looking at Sam during prayers.
Loves: Animals. Books. Traveling. The beach. The pool. Flying on airplanes. Being among close family and friends. Breakfast. Helping us cook. Reading. Getting snuggly in his bed. Ralph the mouse. Sam. Adventure.
Doesn't love: Loud, chaotic situations. Pushy people. Strangers who talk to him like they know him. Beans.
Some things he's good at: Remembering things he has learned. (This leads to correcting other people when they're wrong sometimes, ahem.) Communicating. Obeying. Using his imagination. Looking out for Sam.
Aspirations: To get a pet. (Actually, all the pets. He has asked for everything from a pet mouse to a lion cub.) To carry a lunch box and ride a school bus someday.
Samuel - 1 year
Favorite way to spend playtime: Throwing a ball with someone, or if no one is available, throwing it - chasing it down - throwing it again, etc. Emptying baskets of toys, pulling all of the tupperware out, excavating the house plants, pushing toy cars around, playing chase with Mikey. He is not very interested in books or cartoons - wants to be free and on the move all the time. Loves to be outside. Loves the splash pad and the pool.
Latest skills: Throwing a ball while standing, taking a couple of steps, pulling papers off my desk, doing animal sounds, dunking his face in the pool or bathtub, climbing stairs/chairs/stools/tables/into the diswasher, falling asleep on his own (sometimes), sleeping through the night (sometimes), brushing his teeth.
Words: Dad, Mama, Bubba, Mikey (eee), baby (bee), peach (shh), thank you (tank-tank), go, Gigi, amen (men), book, balloon (boon), no-no-no.
Best way to make him laugh: Tickle him, kiss his belly, startle him. (Catch him when he's sleepy.)
Loves: Playing in the pool and the bathtub. Rough-housing with Daddy and Mikey. Dogs. Music. Avocado. Snuggles. Nursing.
Doesn't love: Being away from Mom and Dad. Having his face cleaned. Long car trips. Being told "no".
Some things he's good at: Playing happily by himself or with others. Being patient. Throwing.
Aspirations: To someday get into the bathroom and explore the toilet. To keep up with Mikey.