In less than a week Joe will turn three years old. Ryan and I have said for a couple months now that we think Joe might have the "terrible threes" rather than the "terrible twos." Our personalities are really clashing now that he's becoming more and more independent. There are more many, many, many, many more tantrums now than when he was two. Maybe they are more infuriating because we can't use the "oh we just can't communicate" excuse. There are days I want to pull my hair out and start hitting the wine bottle because maybe that would make the "I'M AWAKE! I'M AWAKE, MOMMY! I'M AWAKE!!!!!!!!!!!!" coming from his bedroom as soon as I put him down for a nap a little more bearable.
But as much as there are times I feel like my brain is going to explode there are those times that my face hurts from smiling so much. Joe has matured so much in the last few months. It seems like in lightning speed he's gone from a bumbling toddler to a little social human being.
I realized on Sam's birthday just how much fun Joe's birthday will be. Joe enthusiastically opened all Sam's presents and even started the chorus of Happy Birthday without being prompted. I think this is the first birthday he actually understands the concept of birthday. I'm so excited for him to see his party guests. I can't wait for the excited happy look on his face when he opens presents. I wonder how he'll react to everyone singing to him. At least I know he can blow out his candles. Last year he just kind of blew raspberries at them. We're planning on decorating for the party the night before while he's asleep to surprise him the next morning. It's going to be a dinosaur theme. And we are so doing this for the party:
|Don't judge us cuz we're awesome.|
|Joe when he was 13 months old|
The one thing I am hesitant on is Halloween. I've seen the fear factor creep into his eyes these last few weeks. Just a couple weeks ago we were all sleeping in bed and he woke up saying there was a bear in the bed. He was pointing to Sam. I turned on the light to show him it was his brother. He said, "Oh." then looked a little closer to be sure, and then he really figured it out and said, "OOOOH!!!" An hour later he woke up saying there was another bear, but it was just a shirt hanging by our closet. Just this week he tells me he doesn't want to watch certain movies because they are "'cary" and has insisted I remove Buzz, Woody and Jesse from his bed at night. Just today he said the crack between the bed and the wall was scary. I think we are entering the realm of fear. I've written about my thoughts about the scariness on Halloween before, but this year I think we're going to have to be extra cautious. I do think he'll be excited to dress up and get candy. I'm sure he'll ask to watch The Great Pumpkin fifty times a day, but judging by the worried look on his face while looking at the inflatable Halloween decorations at Wal-Mart... this may be a tricky holiday.
|I don't blame Joe for being freaked out.|
|Joe at 13 months helping us carve a pumpkin|
Don't EVEN get me started on Christmas. Oh, Lawdy. I revert into a seven year old at Christmastime... always have. But now that Joe will be a little more aware of what's going on... I'm going to go all Buddy the Elf. I will be just as excited as he will to see Santa and all the lights and presents because I will get to see that magic and wonderment in his eyes. So often I feel like I fail in teaching Joe about God, but I think Advent will be a perfect opportunity to start. Maybe, just maybe.... I can finally start doing all those Catholic liturgical crafts because Joe might understand it now!
|Joe at 15 months being amazed at the Christmas village at Crown Center|
I have always loved this time of year. It's magical to me. Even my melancholic personality seems to fizzle away in the months of September, October, November and December.
I really do think three will be a fun year. Sam is starting to walk all over the place and he laughs hysterically at Joe all the time. Joe often encorages Sam to walk and says, "Good walkin'!" I know there will be those maddening times when they start to fight over stuff, but absolutley cannot wait to see how their relationship develops.
And I can't wait to see how Joe's relationship develops with Ryan and me. He's talking so much now and we actually have conversations. Sometimes Ryan and I will be talking in the car and Joe will just butt in with some story about a lion and a dinosaur. We can actually sit down and watch a movie together and talk about it. He asks me to sing songs and how things work and what is the monkey's name and it. is. so. fun.
Seeing him run around in super hero underwear instead of diapers makes me realize just how fast he is growing up. So much has changed in a year and I know more changes are coming in leaps and bounds!
Happy almost 3rd birthday to my Joe. Words cannot express the love and joy I have in my heart because you are in my life!
|Turning 2... he still looks so babyish!|
|Almost 3... my little hero!|