Wednesday, June 20, 2007

3, 2 & 1

There is MUCH to write about again this time. The star of this blog entry is definately Harrison. The last couple of months have been an amazing time for him. He has grown and developed so much as a person and has had a lot of fun new experiences. Usually he has a little blurb at the end of each blog entry, but certainly not today. Today is his chance to be the star.

I will start with something I can now say that I have been looking forward to since I found out in the fall of 2005 that I was pregnant with Harrison. I now have 3, 2, and 1 year old children. Usually when I am out in the store I am a bit of a specticle with the three little ones hanging off my cart. Everyone wants to know if they are all mine and how old they are. At first it was the hassle of saying 2 1/2, 14 months and one month or whatever. Now I just get to say, 3, 2, and 1 and continue moving. It has simplied my life just a bit. It also gives me a bit of pride to say that they are all mine and it is possible to survive and thrive in such a family. It is not as unusual and freakish as many think. In fact, it's fun, and I will add to it when I can convince Stephen that it would be a good idea :>)

I will start with an Evan and Julia story before I jump into my Harrison biography. Julia and Evan have the most hilarious conversations that really only make perfect sense to the two of them. For example, one day we were driving down the road when we came to a stop at a VERY long red light. I look in my rear view mirror to see Julia and Evan completely captivated by the two guys in the midget pickup truck next to us with their windows down, elbows out the windows, and smoking cigarettes. A lovely seen to be sure. Finally Evan says, with eyes still glued on the guys, "Julia, do you think those guys are nice or scary?"
Julia: "Nice."
Evan:"Do you just want to hug and kiss them?"
Julia: "Yeah."
Evan: "Ok."
Mom: "That would be the day. . . "


Boy. . . it's hard to decide where to begin. Harrison spent the first 11 months of his life not doing a whole lot. He has had the most delightful and easy-going personality since he got over his cowlick at 8 weeks old, but he was more of an observer and self entertainer than an eager family participant. That was until the week he turned 11 months old. In one week he started drinking out of a sippy cup, crawling up on all fours (May 3rd), and talking up a storm. You have just about never heard a child his age who could talk as much as this child can. He astonishes people every where we go. I can't really guess at how many words he knows, but it's a bunch and he will repeat a LOT of what he hears. His favorite thing to do is to repeat the last word of the sentences we say. About a month ago I was out with my parents when he called my dad "Steve" and my mom had to tell him to call him "Papa". This week at Vacation Bible School he started saying "please: and "thanks" to the workers who gave him his snacks. He slapped a girl in his class on Monday who was leaning on a chair and said, "SIT!" Evan talked very young as well, but he never repeated what he heard as he heard it until he was closer to two years old. He would just randomly start saying things. Julia didn't talk a whole lot until she was speaking in full sentences, though she was still pretty young for that. It never ceases to amaze me how unique each child is. Hearing Harrison repeat so much of what I say during the day never ceases to take me completely off guard. Probably his most complex word is "ticka,ticka,ticka,ticka. . ." which is what we say when we are tickling him. You really have to hear his verbal skills to believe it, but I have many, many witnesses.

Several important first:

*First time to the beach and salt water while in Bradenton, FL for my cousin's wedding with just mommy (pictured below).
*Started walking around while holding on to furniture the week before his first birthday.
*First trip to Washington DC and Annapolis, MD with just mommy again for another friend's wedding over his first birthday (Pictured Below).
*First Birthday was June 3rd.
*Started eating with utensils (used a fork on his meat) on June 2nd at my friend Leah's rehearsal dinner in Annapolis, MD.
*Stood without hanging on to something for the first time on June 16th.
*First time in a swimming pool the week before Memorial day.
*Weighed just less than 24 pounds at one year appointment which is down from 25 pounds at last appointments. All that crawling is trimming him down.
*One thing I completely forgot to write about in the last blog entry was that Harrison had his first haircut on the day before Easter in April. His hair isn't thick, but it was getting long and straggly and it made him look so grown up. We used the shaver we use on Evan.
He is a mad lover of water. He will stick his whole head under the water and come up gasping for breath and choking up a storm and when he returns to normal breathing goes back for more. It scares me to death. He has a love/hate relationship with the swimming pool because I have to hold on to him and he would rather I just let him go on his own. I can't take my eyes off of him for a second in the bath. He just has no fear of the water at all. Julia and Evan, until we started living at the swimming pool this year, have had a terrible fear of anything other than bath water and they don't want that to even splash their face in any way. . . I am not sure which madness is better.

First taste of salt water in the Gulf of Mexico with Mommy on 5/6/07

Who doesn't like sandy beaches?

Mmmmm. . . spaghetti!

First time petting a goat.

Not the first time he has been imprisoned and mocked by older siblings.

Harrison with old Liberty debater friends and spouses in Annapolis, MD 6/1/07.

Making an impression on my friend's new mother-in-law following the wedding in Annapolis.

The reception in Annapolis was at a yacht club with a beautiful view.

Harrison and Mommy had a great time . .

Cutie Patutie and Micheal Tilley.

First birthday present at family party.

First Birthday cake at family party. (31 candles. 30 for Daddy and one for Harrison)

First birthday cake explosion.

Getting good with a spoon.


Julia announced in the car today, "Mommy, Jesus lives in my heart." Where she came up with this, I can only guess. We were, at that moment, listening to the song "I've got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart". Where she specifically got the term "lives" is unknown to me other than just picking up on previous conversations with Evan on the topic. I just said, "Really?! Wow! Great!" There is a theology that I think needs to be understood a bit before this is the life-changing decision that one can make, and I know it is way over a 2 year old's head. Who knows but God? I don't discourage such talk, I just won't let myself think she is eternally secure just yet.

This morning I ran upstairs during breakfast to grab something quickly and heard an explosion in the dinette. I ran back downstairs to find that Julia had dropped her glass bowl on the floor and it had shattered into a million pieces absolutely everywhere. After I had taken in the scene for a moment I looked at up Julia. Her eyes were wide as saucers and she said, "I go to the store and buy a new bowl, mommy." After a moment of shock at realizing that she had suddenly grasped the concept of commerce, I realized that she just thinks money grows on trees. When something breaks we just run out and buy a new one. I don't remember thinking that as a kid. . . I guess parenting is all about re-evaluating what we are modeling so we can readjust.

I also forgot to mention in the last blog entry that Julia also had her first haircut the day before Easter, the same day as Harrison's first haircut. I have trimmed her bangs before, but I was letting her hair grow out for a while before I had them even it out. She LOVED the experience of going to a salon with just Mommy. It was a special children's salon and she got her hair cut in a Lightning McQueen car while she licked a sucker. What could be better than that?

She gets braver in the pool in our neighborhood every time we go. We go 3 or 4 times a week now that it is so hot. The first couple of times we went she just stood at the edge of the wading pool, which is a foot deep, and watched. Then she would get in for a minute at a time if I would hold her hand. Then she would play in it for a period of time. Then she figured out how to get into the pool herself. Then she started lowering herself into the water up to her neck. . . in less than a month since the pool opened she is now able to jump in the wadding pool and even if her face goes under and she freaks out for a second she is right at the edge jumping in again. She is getting braver with floaties in the big pool. She will let us let her go for a few seconds at a time and is so proud of herself when she does. I am certain by the end of the summer she will be kicking around the big pool with Evan in her little floaties like it's nothin'.

We have been at Vacation Bible School for 4 hours every morning this week. I have been teaching Julia's class. It's not my idea of a great way to spend a week, but I have done worse things. Every once in a while when I start to miss Harrison I will go down the hall, get him out of his class and take him back to mine. Julia cares for him like a little mother and protects him from the other toddlers in the class. She has really gotten into baby dolls in the last month and always has one under her arm. She has an all plastic one, completely in the nude, who goes to the pool with us every time. Then she has one that is Persian or Latino or something which she she picked out with her Grandmother on her birthday that stays in her bed because it is too big to drag around. Then she has identical twins (her two grandmother's unknowingly got her the same doll) which go with us everywhere else. I have a picture below of her "shopping" in goggles, bracelets, jammies, a purse, and one of the twins.

My legs with Julia and Harrison at Vacation Bible School for the first time 6/18/07

Getting too grown up . . .

Dancing with Mommy at VBS.

Pool babe.
"Shopping" with goggles, jammies, purse, bracelettes and baby.


I wrote Evan news in blue, because blue is Evan's favorite color. I know that because he tells me and anyone who will listen several times a day. It has been his favorite color for months. His favorite food is still jelly and mayo sandwiches, which are still a struggle for me to even make. His favorite friend is always Quin. He is really into naming his favorites.

His favorite new hobby, burping on command. I feel like a hypocrit telling him that it is disgusting and he needs to stop it, but it is disgusting and he needs to stop it. It would help if Stephen did anything other than laugh when he does it . . .

Similar to the Julia story, sometime in March he started to insist that he asked Jesus into his heart at church. I don't argue with him, but if he starts asking where Jesus is, I will say, "He is in heaven and in mommy's heart and daddy's heart". Then he always says, "And he is in my heart too! I just asked him into my heart at church." I just say, "You did? Cool!" I think he too little to understand what that means, but I don't want to discourage him.

He has turned from being petrified of the water into a little fish. He has gotten so much braver about a lot of things, but one big relief for me, since I was actually part fish as a kid, is that he is really into the pool this summer. He puts on his floaties and swims all over the "big pool" with the other kids his age and older. He is now starting to hold his breath and stick his lips under the water. . . It makes me so proud.

Part of being a parent is living with the continued amazement at what kids come up with. For example, for a week or so Evan's favorite book was "Jonah and the Whale". We would read it each night before bed. Finally one night I stopped reading it and just started asking him questions about the story line to see what he would say. We got to the second to the last page of the book and at this time Jonah has decided to obey God and is clipping it to Ninevah. I asked Evan, "What is Jonah going to do now that the fish spit him out onto the beach?" Evan said, "He is going to go to Ninevah to tell the naughty people that God loves them and he's going to get a new pair of shoes." Noticing that Jonah is barefoot in the picture I say, "Hmm. . . interesting idea. Ok." I turn to the last page of the book to read about Jonah's time in Ninevah and Evan says, "See, mommy? New shoes!" Sure enough. Jonah is preaching on the streets of Ninevah in spiffy new sandles. It is the most minute part of the picture, something that would never have occured to me, but he noticed it. I told Stephen about it later and we laughed about it together.

BTW, Evan has started informing us of all of the stuff he is going to buy when he grows up and get a job. That's because everytime he asks for something I tell him he will have to buy it when he gets a job some day. A blue boat is a the top of that list along with a new, blue, jeep truck and a new blue house. The list grows by the moment. I tell him he better ask God what He wants him to do before he starts making so many purchases, but he just asks, "Why wouldn't God want me to have a house?" Now when he asks if I will buy him something I say, "If you pray about how God wants you to spend your money and He says you can, then you can." He is not crazy about that answer.

Jonah and his bare feet.

Jonah preaching away in his new sandles.

First time brushing a goat.

Beaming at a braves game with Daddy.

Crashing after the Braves game with daddy.

I see a striking resemblence.

Swimming like a fish.

Washing my windows. . . for real.

Three peas in a pod.

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