James is two and a half today and, my goodness, where has the time gone?!?! It seems like just yesterday that he was so small that preemie sized clothes swallowed him and now he is so grown up and has such a huge personality. I thought that there would be no better time than today to tell the story of James in pictures and words because this little man has a lot going on!
James loves with all his heart and two things that he really loves are his blankie and his jammies. He would prefer to stay in jammies all day every day and never get dressed. And he must have his blankie whenever he is in bed. In addition to that, he must be holding the crocheted baseballs on one of the corners of his blankie! Sometimes he gets food on his jammies (like in this picture) and runs around for a while without a shirt, but he’d prefer a full set of jammies any time. Here he’s diligently watching his blankie get a bath in the washing machine. He’s happy now, but let me tell you that there was screaming and gnashing of teeth when we first took the blankie away to put it in the wash!
James has found the greatest playmate in his big sister. They are getting in to more and more sibling squabbles, but for the most part they play together great. And James will do ANYTHING that Charlotte does. Like above, Charlotte decided to try and catch snowflakes on her tongue so immediately James stuck his out too. He has a huge vocabulary from listening and repeating what Charlotte says and she is great to help him do things around the house. They are so sweet (and sometimes frustrating) to watch play together. Hopefully they’re friendship will help with the transition of adding another sibling to the family.
James is a super picky eater. I tell Jason often that it’s his fault because he’s still pretty picky, but I also think some of it is just being a boy and wanting to assert himself. His favorite food is graham crackers with “peanter” (aka peanut butter). Which I guess is good since he refuses to eat any meat so hopefully the protein in the PB makes up for it. He loves milk and drinks it almost all of the time, although I send water to school and he drinks that too. He still loves fruit but occasionally can go through stages where one of his favorites becomes a non-starter. We have found that he enjoys a spicier palette than Charlotte and I do and when we went to eat Mexican the other night he literally ate an entire cupful of salsa with his chips!
There should be no question that James is all boy. While he can name all the princesses due to Sissy’s influence, if there is a sport on or a chance to throw the ball he is all about it. He seems to like almost all sports and will watch any of them on tv — hockey, rugby, soccer, football, baseball, golf, basketball — although golf, baseball, and football are his favorites. When we got to play outside a few weeks ago because it was pretty all he wanted to do was play golf and kept telling us to watch him hit it “in hole” or “in bunker.” But then last weekend Jason had ESPN on and they were showing shots from baseball spring training and James pitched a fit when they switched to showing another sport because he wanted to keep watching baseball. Who knows what he’ll decide on in the end to focus his love on in the end, but he is a lot of fun to watch at this stage of trying everything out!
James is often an all or nothing kid and we’ve found no better reflection of this than in his preference of parents. During the week he usually only wants me and will cry “I want my mommy!” if Jason as much as tries to pick him up or change his diaper without me (sometimes even if I’ve standing there too but Jason’s the one actually doing the task!). But on the weekends, he morphs into a little boy in love with his Daddy. He wants to sit with Daddy and play catch with Daddy and be just like his Daddy. As I mentioned before he gets a spicy palette from his Daddy as you can see here with them both enjoying a fried onion and dipping sauce at dinner!
James is still a snuggler. He doesn’t like being far away from me when it’s just the two of us at home and says “sit wif me” frequently on those days. He has a pile full of babies in his bed just like his sister does and transitions through a favorite every couple of days. Yesterday morning I was sitting on the couch about to read with him when he sat up and put his arms around my neck and said, “Always love you!” I’m pretty sure he could have asked for the moon right then and I would have given it to him. I pray that I never forget the feel of those sweet arms around my neck or the sound of him asking for a “baby kiss” or a “big kiss”!
I’m not sure that I realized exactly how silly Jason was until we had kids and they became the silliest, craziest kids. One day while we waited in carpool I heard James saying, “Help! Help!” and I turned around and he said, “Help! Budderball’s on my head!” and started giggling. For a while he thought it was great to be called a Silly Billy but now he’ll correct you and tell you that he’s a boy not a billy and wants to be called a silly boy. Between all of his faces done on command (surprised, sad, happy) and all the funny things he says, he keeps us in stitches most of the time!
James has gotten in to the “helper” stage and while it sometimes makes tasks take twice as long I’m trying to let him help me as much as he can. For instance, he now has to help me unload the dishwasher and is good at putting the non-breakables up. Last weekend when I was doing clothes he wanted to help me move from the washer to the dryer so I stood back and let him move every single piece of clothing to the dryer — it was awesome! He also works hard to hand me all of the pillows that go on the bed when I’m making it. He keeps up a constant refrain of how hard it is and how strong he is and will frequently show me his “muscles” after every pillow. And when I was going to make Jason’s birthday cake he wanted to help so I set him up with a spatula and a bowl with some flour in it expecting him to make a mess. But he didn’t even spill more than a drop! I was so impressed! He is definitely growing up!
James has definitely come in to his own personality in the past few months. If he doesn’t want to do something he’ll let you know loud and clear. And time out’s have become an almost daily occurrence at our house. He is good to mimic Charlotte in her manners and thank you’s but also mimics some of her attitude that’s started which is no fun for anyone. Hopefully, we’re getting some of it under control as he’s learning that when we say no we really mean no (which means we have to work hard to stick with what we say). With his own likes and dislikes and opinions, it’s not easy to forget that he is his own little person with his own mind!
I’ve gotten lots of comments from others in the past month or so about how well James is talking. I always tell them that with a sister who talks all day every day, there’s not much he can do but pick it up and try to get in the conversation! Sometimes we have to call in the translator (aka Charlotte) to try and decipher what he’s saying, but for the most part we understand because he seems to make a big point of annunciating his words. Some of my favorite James-isms are his southern accent (me-yelk “milk”, hey-yelp “help”, pee-shew “pee-yew (like for a skunk)”), his shortened words (prise! “surprise!”,ta na! “ta da!”), and his own unique phrases (huh, that’s wee-ard! “huh, that’s weird!”, my perfect! (used when he doesn’t want to do something like get cleaned up or wash his hands), who dat name? “what’s that person/thing’s name?”).
James has found a love of trains and, while he hasn’t played with his train track from Santa in a few weeks, he still loves all things related to Thomas and Sodor. He is almost equally enamored with any type of vehicle and is usually the first one to spot a “barbage truck” (garbage truck) or “dunk truck” (dump truck) when we’re out running errands. He can name most types of construction machinery (like backhoe, digger, etc) and also loves planes and cars!
Just for some stats/record keeping: he’s still in size 5 diapers and has very little interest in potty training. He sleeps about 12 hours a night and naps for a few hours in the afternoon although he’ll wake up and play in his bed during one or either of those times if he’s not tired. He can skip that afternoon nap if he needs to but most of the time it’s not worth it. He wears size 2T pants and mostly 2T shirts but can wear smaller 3T shirts or jammies. His shoe size is between 7 and 7 1/2.
You are such a treasure to us and we are so thankful that we get to be your parents. You are growing into such a sweet and kindhearted little boy and we love getting to watch you grow. We can’t wait to see what God has in store for you. Watching you learn about God and Jesus and talking to them is one of the greatest joys in my life. We love you so much little buddy!