Tuesday, August 29, 2006

My Daniel

This is my Daniel. He turned two yesterday, although I would almost say that he turned two last Wednesday, the 23rd, when some new sort of energy started pumping through his happy veins.

My Daniel is such a great kid. He is 100% boy, and proud of it. He loves to climb and run, dig in the dirt, and tease his big sister, but he's still Mommy's boy when he gets hurt or wants to read a book. A few weeks ago he scared me to death when I woke up in the middle of the night to find him on top of me to give me a big kiss. Just wanted to check on you, Mom!

We went to great lengths to research what we could give Daniel for his birthday to best expend his unbounded energy, and finally settled on this great toy called the Woodland Climber, by Step2. Peter set it up last night, and I just had to video him climbing up, making Hannah move faster, and hurtling down the slide, just to run - with bouncing cheeks and tummy - around to the back again shouting "MORE!!!" Are you smiling yet?

It's hard to believe that two years ago yesterday I held my Buddy in my arms for the first time. He was my easiest birth, even though he was over 8 pounds. I remember crying one postpartum night as I rocked him, thinking of all the women whose sons are in battle in Iraq right now, and realizing that one day my own son may be in battle too. I remembered Mary, knowing some of what her Son would face at the hands of men. My son is not holy, but he is mine, and I treasure him.

But back to smiles...Daniel puts up with a lot. He's got an older sister who makes it clear that she is sharing her room with him. He's now the middle child, with a baby to take Mom's time away from him, but he is never demanding. He might test you a little bit - with a big smile on his face the whole time - but he's two, afterall.

Oh Daniel, if I could only make it clear to you just how much we love you. You are a gift from God. I promise, and I know Daddy does too, to do our best by God's grace to teach you and train you in the way you should go, that when you are old you will not depart from it. Our firstborn son. You make us smile. It's going to be a great journey.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Our Whirlwind Weekend

As an early celebration of Daniel's 2nd birthday, my parents took us all to go see THE Thomas the Tank Engine in Felton, CA (near Santa Cruz).

Thomas was everything we had hoped for. He's big, he's blue, and he's Really Useful too. There was a full-size train, a full-size inflatable train, a bounce house, face painting, the Thomas Store, a giant layout, a giant Lego Thomas, you name it. I would have to say Daniel's favorite was taking a ride through the Santa Cruz mountains on the train itself. He stood (way to excited to sit) on Peter's lap with huge eyes the whole time. Of course, the rest of us thought just watching Daniel's reactions were priceless!

It was good to get away and hang out with my parents. For those of you who have not yet heard, my dad was recently diagnosed with Parkinsons Disease. It is the result of a drop in the production of dopamine in the body, and is a muscular degenerative disease - frustrating, but thankfully not fatal. It has been a hard couple of months for he and my mom as they adjust to his condition, but God has been so faithful. Dad is getting good treatment, and they would covet your prayers as they seek the Lord for how to best approach life with this rather large twist. Daniel and my dad have a special relationship, so it was extra-special to take a trip with them, and especially as they are both train guys.

After staying overnight at Grandpa B's house in Hollister, we came home to spend time with my cousins visiting from San Diego! Lauren is turning 3, and Daniel turning 2, so we had a birthday party for them on Saturday night. I would post more photos, but I'm having trouble uploading them right now, so if you want to see photos, email me.

We all got a kick out of Lauren and her new dress-up outfit. I took Hannah to Toys'R'Us last week to choose something for Lauren. I figured, Hannah is 3, she would know what a 3 year old girl would want. She chose a very gaudy lavender "tap" dress-up outfit, with a tiara and earrings for Lauren. It was worth getting just for the feathers and sequins! Well, surprise, surprise, Lauren went gaga over it, and had to put it on and wear it the rest of the evening.

Daniel wasn't sure about his birthday cake. He ran away from it when I turned the lighter on to light the candles, shouting "Fire! Hot!!!" At least he understands to not get close to fire! What a sweet guy. Happy (early) Birthday Buddy!

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Christmas Already?

This morning I got out my sewing machine to work on some repair jobs, and found the remnants of ideas for making Christmas stockings. I know it is a little off-season, but I've been thinking about how I can get ahead of the Christmas rush. Maybe this is it!

Seeing that we seem to add one person to our stocking mantle each year, I need to choose something that I can easily add to, which means I should probably make my own. I have plenty of ideas, but I don't want to just blow a lot of money on something that I'm likely to change again in a few years!

I wish I knew how to quilt. That would be great. I could make patchwork stockings, and personalize the cuff. Or I could go elegant, velvet with gold trim. I could wait and discover each person's personality, and make one to reflect them. Maybe I'll do that the next time.

Until then, I'm just going to have to find a way to get myself to a fabric store...

Oh, regarding a prayer update: Peter is walking again!