Muchkin Update: 2 Years, 3 Months

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When Lydia wasn’t yet two years old, I started writing down monthly “reports” describing the latest things she was learning, saying, or doing. I thought it would be fun to keep a record of how she was growing and changing, and to be able to look back with her later and show her how much we enjoyed her and all the precious things she brought into our lives.

Lydia has made some huge strides in the past month, language-wise! Some of our favorites include her pronunciation of “All finished” when she’s done eating (sounds like “All fiscious!”, and her latest expression of independence, “I do it!”. She also asks me every morning, “Odyssey? Blankey? At Stef?”, which translated means, “Are we going to listen to Adventures in Odyssey while I sit on the blanket and then watch an Aunt Steph vlog?”. The answer, on most days, is “yes”. Whenever we listen to music in the car and the cd gets to the silent gap in between tracks, Lydia almost always asks, “More?”

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Lydia is back to loving her books. She often asks us to read to her (“Book?”) and can even identify some of the books with a name. A favorite is called Grandma’s Are for Giving Tickles, which she just calls, “Gramma”. It has flaps, and she is starting to memorize, not only what picture is under each flap, but the writing under the flaps as well. So, when I open the hop scotch flap, she says, “No cheating!” When I open the flap that shows a fireplace scene with hot cocoa, she says, “Cocoa”. And when I open the flap where Grandma is sending grandson out to play in the snow, she says, “Have fun!” She also enjoys reading her First Words book and identifying an impressive number of the pictures inside. She has another book with flaps, but it also has buttons that make sounds. For each flap there is a picture that matches a picture on a button, and Lydia can successfully match every flap to the corresponding button without help.

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Lydia loves the playground. We are sad to think that, once we move, we will no longer be within walking distance of a playground. So I’ve been trying to take Lydia there extra to get some time in. She just recently started going down the tunnel-slide by herself, and has even done one of the bigger twirly slides. Recently Lydia went down the tunnel-slide 13 times in a row! I noticed that she followed the exact same routine every time.

Lydia sits down on the slide, on her knees.
Lydia: Sit down!
Tries to pull her feet out in front of her.
Lydia: Feet first!
Gets stuck.
Lydia: Stuck!
Gets unstuck
Lydia: Ready?!
Goes down slide. Gets up. Looks up the slide.
Lydia: Me?
Dan: You want me to come down?
Lydia: Yeah
Dan comes down slide.
Lydia runs back around to the spot where Dan lifts her up to the top.
Lydia: Again!

I don’t know if it’s an age-thing, a phase-thing, or a personality-thing, but Lydia really likes repetition and routine. (Maybe she takes after me!) It will be fun to see if she grows out of it or if it sticks with her.

 photo slide_zps1d9312b8.jpgAs always, Lydia is super sweet. Yes, independent, feisty, stubborn, but super sweet. She’s almost always smiley and giggly, doesn’t get down even if others around her are, and loves meeting and watching other kids at the park. Sometimes, without a nap for a couple of busy days, she’ll get emotional and whiney. But as soon as she gets her rest, she’s her perky, happy, giggly self. She loves playing games, being tickled, pretending, helping, cuddling when she’s sleepy, and watching baseball. At the end of her Grandma book, the last page talks about giving Grandma a big hug and Lydia will say “Big Hug!” then turn and give the reader a big hug (and anyone else nearby). And this week, for the first time, when I tucked her in for a nap and said “I love you”, she shouted back “I luff oo!”.

Labor Day Adventures

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Dan had the day off for Labor Day on Monday, and we were able to enjoy our first day-off as a family without traveling since Dan graduated! The day started with some sleeping in, a late breakfast, and then plan-making for the rest of the afternoon.

We decided to check out downtown Plymouth, since we’re planning on moving soon and had never gotten around to spending some time down there. It’s a lot like downtown Traverse City (where we grew up), but bigger.

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We walked the streets, looked in the windows, and pushed Lydia in her stroller. Eventually we came to the fountain, and took a nice break there sitting in the shade and watching kids walk around the edge of the fountain and then sneak in when their parents weren’t looking.

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After a while, we continued our walk, touring all the streets of downtown Plymouth. We ended up in a historic area, where we gave Lydia a history lesson on the American wars. Dan and I remembered an embarrassingly small amount of information about any of the wars. So much for straight A’s. Dan’s side of the family is somehow related to Abraham Lincoln (17th cousins or something like that) so we were sure to get a shot of Lydia with Abe. See any resemblance?

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It was pressing in on nap time and we still hadn’t eaten lunch, but we made another stop at Starbucks to get some free drinks (story to come later…). Dan got an iced coffee and Lydia and I shared a smoothie as we headed back to the fountain one last time. However, just as I was about to take a picture of our smoothie-sharing, I realized my camera was gone!

We retraced our steps back to Starbucks. No camera. Then we went all the way back to Abe, where I thought I may have forgotten it on a bench. But there was the bench, and no camera. Just than a tall man ran up and asked us if we had lost our camera! This kind gentleman (Jerry) had turned it in to the police station. So after a while of knocking on doors and snooping around the station (which was pretty deserted), Jerry found us an officer who located our missing camera. That ended the trip on a very happy note and we headed back home for lunch and naps.

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The weather was absolutely perfect, so Dan worked on his computer outside and, after a long nap myself, I joined him. When Lydia woke up we all headed to the playground, where Lydia mastered the tunnel-slide, and then went down it 13 times, insisting that Dan follow her down every single time. We spent a good long while at the playground and, when everyone was satisfied, made our way back home for dinner. After a couple innings of baseball (our current Monday night tradition while Lydia gets ready for bed), we tucked Lydia in.

Then I gave Dan his first violin lesson, which went really well. I’m thinking of giving violin lessons from home starting sometime after Baby is born, but I’ve never taught before. Dan has very little music education, so he is a perfect first student. And so far, he does great. We’ve had two lessons in a row and he’s been practicing in the mornings.

So, after mastering the “D string”, we watched a little more baseball, and stayed up far too late talking. (Dan really is a happy camper on his days off) Eventually we had to call it a night. I can’t remember ever having a more full and happy Labor Day.