Saturday, September 27, 2008

thirty months

Dear Julianna,

Thursday you officially turned two and a half. So far in your ripe old age you’ve aspired to be a billboard painter, an astronaut in space, a cooker with three - no five – yellow knives, and a firefighter with hot coals in your mouth that might burn you. I have ABSOLUTELY NO IDEA where you get these things, but I swear I’m not making them up and I know they sounds dangerous, but what can you do, right? These are things you’ve actually said you want to be when you “grow bigger”.

<img src="" alt="Jules the firefighter" />

<img src="" alt="see my fire truck?!" />

You’ve also decided you want to be a princess for Halloween. To be honest, I’ve always dreaded the day that you become obsessed with princesses and fairies and all things girly. It’s not that I don’t want you to be those things, it’s more that I’ve never wanted you to be obsessed with them like most little girls spend some time being. You don’t seem to be obsessed with Disney characters YET and it’s actually kind of adorable to see your eyes light up when you talk about your Cinderella dress and being “a pretty, pretty princess.” Last night I went to a ladies thing at church and you and daddy spent the evening playing dress up. You have a good daddy, Jules. I know we both know that. I just wish I’d been here last night to take the pictures that prove it. :)

<img src="" alt="Cinderella girl" align="left" />

You simply adore the two little boys we keep every afternoon after preschool. You love to go to their house and you HATE to have to leave to come home. You scream and cry every time I tell you it’s time to go home. One day you were riding on your tricycle in their driveway and I was trying to get you to come to the car. The little boys were still riding their bikes and you wanted to stay and play so badly that I had to go over and physically lift you off the tricycle and put you in the car. The only thing was that you are smarter and stronger now. When I picked you up you locked on to that tricycle and it came with us. It took A LOT of convincing to get you in the car so we could leave. And just the other night after we got our hair cut we went to eat dinner at the local Mexican restaurant and in the car on the way home you said that next time you wanted two booster seats. After asking you about that I found out that you wanted two booster seats the next time we went to the Mexican restaurant, one for you and one for M (the younger of the two little boys) so that he could eat with us next time. Too cute.

You’re unfortunately cutting another molar and therefore sucking and chewing on your hands and fingers ALL THE TIME. I don’t know if the thumb sucking you’re occasionally doing now (very rarely) is because of the tooth coming in or if it’s more from the fact that both of the boys we see every day suck their thumbs. Regardless you do tell me pretty often that your teeth hurt and I wish I could take that pain away from you.

<img src="" alt="pretty, happy girl" align="right" />

I noticed a new way you’ve been talking this month too. You said something about a family you know that has birds, cats and dogs, rather it’s something like five birds, three cats and one dog. When you were speaking about them you said, “five cats and one <strong>dogs</strong>, uh no, five cats and one <strong>dog</strong>” and I was pleased that you corrected your own grammar. You’ve apparently picked up on pluralization.

You’ve also begun to torment me with the WHY? phase. It is almost more exhausting than it was chasing you right after you learned to walk. The endless questioning is so draining that it can turn an otherwise decent day into a taxing, extremely weary afternoon of discussion and nonstop conversation. It is hard not to snap, Doodlebug, but I’m doing my best because I know that’s how you learn.

<img src="" alt="all smiles" align="left" />

You’ve had a great transition back into preschool this year (even though it’s an entirely different school). You seem to really love at least one of your teachers. While I’m not entirely impressed with the school itself, you do seem happy there and you are growing and learning so I’m not going to have you change schools just because they don’t seem as organized there as they did at your preschool last year. You did take Lucy the first couple of days which helped tremendously I think. You also peed in your pants the first two days of school and since that hasn’t happened in forever (and it hasn’t happened since) I think it was just because of the new routine you weren’t sure who to tell when you needed to go and you hadn’t developed a trust yet for your teachers as full caregivers.

<img src="" alt="playing dress-up - fairy costume" align="right" />

The cutest part of your school experience so far this year has been the use of the drop-off/pick-up lane. It’s amazing! I pull up and a teacher helps you get out of the car and points you down the hall toward your teacher. You walk all the way down there with your little backpack on just like the big kids and I’m so impressed by your ability to follow directions and not be afraid of being independent. It's hard to watch you walk away all by yourself, but I know it's good for you too.

One day Nanna had to pick you up from school and she got there early since she wasn’t sure she’d be able to find the place. She sat in her car for a little while with the windows rolled down and she saw your class out taking a “nature walk.” She said you were all walking around holding on to the “bug rope” and the teacher would stop you all every few feet and point out something else that God made. You would all sing, “God made the trees, God made the trees, God made the trees and God made me” or something like that. Anyway, Nanna said she could hear you singing every word and she said towards the end she decided to get out of the car and walk toward your class and as she was doing that the teacher asked, “What else did God make?” Apparently, when you saw Nanna you answered loudly, “Nanna!” And the teacher said, “Yes, Julianna. God did make your Nanna.” When the teacher told you to wait and stay with the class as you walked back inside to get packed up for the day, you listened and followed her directions nicely.

<img src="" alt="fairy princess" align="left" />

Jules, I am so proud of all that you’re learning and doing and saying. You may be two and a half, but you’ll always be my baby. I love you unconditionally and I will forever and always. Happy Half Birthday!

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