Friday, February 25, 2011

Never Gwow Up!

We've discovered Peter Pan at our house. It started with a book we got a few weeks ago. Then I bought a movie of the musical with Cathy Rigby. Tate and I have been watching chunks of it some nights before bed while Glenn's been out of town. It's been something fun to do and take up some of those long after-dinner hours without Glenn around. We just finished the movie for the first time last night and Tate was SO hyper. He kept chanting words to the song "I won't Grow Up" and running around in circles. Glenn and I just sat there watching him go nuts and laughing so hard!
If you've never heard the song before, there's a lot of repeating and this is apparently his favorite phrase, "Never grow up. Never grow up. Never grow up. Not me. Not I!"
Silly hyper boy.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Quick Trip

Tate and I took off to Austin for a few days last week. We were tired of sitting around here and with friends offering to let us crash at their place it was the perfect excuse to get out of town. Tate did great on the three hour drive and LOVED playing with Tori and Lizzy Lou.
Unfortunately, the two girls got sick the very morning after we arrived and were sick the whole week. They let us stay anyway and we had a great time. The kiddos played with toys and play dough, Tate jumped on the trampoline while I practiced using my new camera.
(The response to "where's mom?")
The Cluffs even made Tate feel special on his actual birthday, which was on Thursday. They treated him to a special breakfast (heart shaped and a 2 shaped pancakes), decorations, a sweet present, and another birthday cake! He's one lucky little guy.Notice how his fork is empty but his hand is full of cake. Silly boy.
We met up with Lindsey and Owen at the mall. Some great girl conversation for me and a train and carousel ride for Tate. Everyone's happy!
Then Stephen watched the kiddos that evening while Janelle and I went downtown to the "Moulin Rouge" sing along at the Alamo Draft house on 6th street. It was hilarious. While not my favorite movie, it was an incredible event. So many drunk people in one theater. Just hilarious. They gave us all props to wave during certain songs and they dropped confetti and even had fireworks at one point when the characters kissed. It was a hilarious good time and a great girls night out with Janelle. Thanks so much for the good times Cluffs!!
On the way home Tate and I had a little mom/son adventure and stopped off at the Blue Bell ice cream factory. Tate was deliriously giddy after having been cooped up in the car and was a very giggly boy during the tour. He had everyone just busting up with his antics.It was really fun and the perfect half way stop to break up the drive. The tour was short and then we had chocolate dipped strawberry ice cream afterwards. Wow it was good! But his favorite part by far was the old ice cream delivery truck they had outside. He loved it. He ran right up to it and said, "Hi old car! Hi!"I'm so excited for Glenn to get back this week. This is his last week away and we're very ready for him to be home. I hope it's a while before he has to travel again. We miss him around here but we really have been trying to stay busy and have lots of adventures. I really love our mom son adventures.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

The Wee Party

Last Saturday we had a little birthday party for Tate. We wanted to celebrate while Glenn was still in town. We just invited three of his little friends around here, one of whom, the only boy we invited, wasn't able to come at the last minute. I wasn't sure if Tate would get it, if he would care about all the stuff and the games, but he did. He had a blast. He was smiling, jumping up and down, wanting to play games again and of course he loved the birthday cake!
We had a Toy Story party and Tate was in heaven. We hid army guys around the room and everyone had fun finding them and putting them in their little bags. Then we played pin the tail on Bullseye. Little Miss Logan was very excited about being blindfolded. Tate and Kennedy, not so much.
Then we played a fishing game, also known as "the claw". Glenn hid behind this sheet and clipped toys to their fishing pole. They thought it was the coolest.
Then a round of musical chairs. When the music stopped they had to stand on a picture of a toy story character and if that picture was drawn out of a bag they got a prize. Tate was very attached to his new silly straws.It was fun to watch their faces. They totally understood when they were the winner and rushed to Glenn to get their prize. So cute.
Tate loved having us sing Happy Birthday to him. He just ate it up. And he thought his birthday cake that Dad made him was extra cool. He's been telling us for weeks, "I want a blue birthday cake for my birthday party."He was fascinated by the candles and got a bit too close with his lips, and then he was too timid to get close again. As soon as we helped him blow them out he yelled, "Wo! Smoke!" Very exciting.
Then we had lunch. Pizza from "plizza planet" as Tate calls it. We all sat down on a big sheet and ate cake and pizza while watching a bit of Toy Story.
Hooray for cake!
It was small, but really fun. Tate was SO happy which was the goal. I just wanted him to have an extra fun day playing with friends and being the center of attention. Happy Birthday Kiddo!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Dear Tate,

Today is your birthday. You're two years old already. The most wonderful, full, and sweetest two years I've known and they seemed to pass the fastest. I've spent a lot of time this week thinking about the moment two years ago when you came into our family and changed everything. We fell in love with you from the first and we're amazed that we somehow are able to love you more every day.

You are a darling little boy. Your Dad and I think there isn't another boy in the world as handsome as you. You have beautiful little eyes, long eyelashes, and a gorgeous smile with deep dimples. Your sweet giggle is just delicious. I never get enough of hearing you laugh and as a consequence we wrestle, play hide and seek, talk and sing silly to you, and you get tickled...a lot. You've earned two little scars on your forehead since your first birthday. You've managed to scare the jeepers out of me twice as those two little wounds bled like crazy but, as always, you recovered quickly and were ready to play again in a few minutes. This quality sure helps me out as a mom. I don't even have the time to freak out when you're so visibly over it as quickly as you are.

You're very sweet pretty much all the time. It's a rare day, or afternoon when you're grumpy for no reason. Usually you're grouchy if you haven't had enough sleep, when you're hungry, or if you're sick. Otherwise you're good to go. You're easy going and don't get worked up if another kid takes something out of your hands which has made nursery and play dates pretty easy so far. You just move on to something else. Your Dad and I are always saying that we're never more proud of you than when there are a lot of other kids around. We're just amazed at how naturally easy going you are. It sounds prideful. It is prideful. We're proud of you. We're constantly saying to each other how lucky we are to have such a sweet little boy, a beautiful little boy, a happy little boy, a smart little boy. There are very few moment when we're not thrilled with you. I'm sure that will change. Likely it will change soon since you are now entering your "twos" but I hope not. Thus far, my dear little boy, you've been a joy to parent. You've had very few frustrating phases or habits. Most of the time you're very polite and obedient. I hope your sweet nature sticks with you as you grow up. That would make our lives much easier!

You love when Daddy comes home from work. You light up when he's around and your sweet nature gets even more bubbly and excited. He's been traveling a lot this year which has you a little confused, but you seem to be even more excited to see him because you miss him when he's gone. You're good buddies and he adores you.

We've had a lot of changes in the last year. Daddy graduated from UT and we moved out of our first home and into an apartment in Houston. You adjusted just fine and now we spend our days having little adventures and exploring the big city we live in. We've been to a lot of parks, a couple museums, the aquarium, and we frequent the zoo. You love animals, know the sounds that they all make, and really enjoy seeing them in person. You're most excited by fish. All kinds of fish. We may have to cave at some point and get a fish tank for you and your daddy. It's a fondness you two share.

You love books and songs. Some of your favorite books right now are, Peter Pan, The Little Engine that Could, The Little Red Caboose, Peter Rabbit, Benjamin Bunny, and some good old sesame street books. We read a lot of books to you and it doesn't take long before you're quoting it back to us throughout the day. You had Where the Wild Things Are completely memorized months ago and you've got several others down now too. It's a little scary how smart you are and how quickly you memorize things. You're the same way with songs. We sing you a couple songs before your nap and bed time and you pick them up really quickly. Your favorites change frequently but right now they are "Feed the Birds", "Somewhere Over the Rainbow", "Wouldn't it be Loverly", pretty much any Disney song and primary songs too. We hear you singing these to yourself all day long. You'll be occupied playing with your train set and you'll start singing an entire song, all with the most delicious lisp. I have to admit, I find your sweet lisp so endearing. You speak so well and so clearly that it's just funny sometimes to hear the phrases that you say come out in your teensy little boy voice.

You also quote movies, just like your Daddy. All the time. Your favorites of late are Kung Fu Panda, Toy Story, Cars, and Beauty and the Beast. Most of the time you even put the movie phrases in the right context, but it's funnier when you randomly quote funny parts of movies. You'll be eating your food and say "My father's not crazy! He's a genius!!", or "I'm sorry, I just wanted to see who the dragon warrior was." Basically, you keep us laughing all day long.

Tate, I love you. You're my little buddy. We play together all day long and I never get enough of you. I'm already dreading the day when you'll go off to school and someone else will get to spend more time with you than I. I know I will always look back at this time and these first years of your life with a little ache in my heart because I love my little you. I love that you adore me and never tire of giving me "a great big hug" or "kitheth". I love that you love snuggling with me while watching a movie or snuggling in my lap while I read you stories, or snuggling on my shoulder while I sing you songs. I'll miss all of these little boy sweet moments so much. But I can honestly say I'm doing my best to really soak you up. To enjoy every moment with you. I know no matter how much I do I'll still wish I had snuggled you more, kissed those squishy cheeks more, listened to your sweet giggle more, played trains with you more, adored you more. But I guess that's part of being a mother. All of these wonderful moments pass so quickly and as much as I look forward to the future of you, I can't help but love the right now. You are a wonder, my Tate. I love you. Happy Birthday.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Little Conversation

Tate was talking to me today as Luigi (a car from the movie Cars), while holding his little toy Luigi.
T- "I'm Luigi. I'm a race car!"
Me- "Oh yeah? Luigi, do you drive really fast?"
T- "Yeah."
Me- "How many tires do you have?"
T- "I don't have tires. I'm a boy."

Ah. Thanks for clearing that up.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Tuppenth a Bag

Tate loves his bed time songs. He loves them so much he's often found "singing" them to himself throughout the day. Sometimes he just sings one phrase over and over. Sometimes he sings an entire song. He also likes when I start a phrase and then pause and let him finish it.
I think it's super adorable when he's playing with his trucks and trains and I hear him singing, "Lots of chocolate for me to eat. Lots of coal making lots of heat." (My Fair Lady), "Shall we dance? Shall we dance? Shall we dance?" (The King and I), "When You Wish Upon a Star", "Give Said the Little Stream", "I Love to see the Temple", or "I am a Child of God". It's so sweet to hear whole verses come out in his tiny voice as he's playing.
My current favorite is when he sings "Feed the Birds" from Mary Poppins. He knows the whole song now and I have not been able to catch it on film even though he sings to himself all the time. He gets cranky and stops every time I run for the camera. I finally caught him on video but the video wouldn't load on the blog so, while I love it, my mom can't see it. So we tried again when he started singing it in the car one night. We hurried to pull the car over under a street light, turned on the light inside the car, and snuck out the camera and it still turned out completely black. Oh well, at least you can hear his little voice.
I love that he loves music. I love that it's in him enough that it just bubbles out of him when he's completely occupied doing something else.

I love the way he begs to climb on my lap whenever I'm playing the piano and how he gets all excited when i take his little fingers and make them play a melody that he can recognize. I'm lucky to have a little boy who enjoys something that I genuinely love sharing with him. I'd be pretty sad if my little boy didn't want me to sing him bed time songs, though I know that time will probably come soon enough.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Freezing Rain and a Play Date.

Glenn has training in Oklahoma this whole month. It's a huge bummer. Luckily, he gets to come back this weekend and next weekend. We're making the most of having him here and trying to pack some fun in these few days we get to have him around.
Tate and I kept ourselves busy this week while Glenn was away. Story time, play dates and such. It's been really cold out this week so we had to be creative. On Friday we had what they called "freezing rain". Basically it rained a lot and froze all over the roads...and everything else. No snow, just ice everywhere. They were on the news telling everyone not to drive if you could possibly avoid it. Whole sections of freeways closed down. Schools and most of the downtown area was completely shut down. At first I thought it was just silly but then I realized that, unlike Utah, this city simply does not have the equipment to take care of a little ice so it becomes seriously dangerous.
Our favorite play date this week was was a trip to a blow up jump place with little miss Logan. They were both a little timid at first, he more than she. This whole, unsteady ground thing really threw them off. They warmed up to the idea pretty quickly and were soon climbing, squeezing, and sliding with the big kids.
Tate especially liked tackling this giraffe to the ground over and over again. Little man somehow managed to fall off the only solid thing in the room, a picnic table, and split his lip open. It was good fun. Lots of blood. He stopped bleeding pretty quickly and then was mad I was holding him still on my lap and he was off to play some more. It was a great outing for a cold day.