(Levi, eating oatmeal with his great-great-grandmother's spoon, sitting in his great-great-great-grandmother's high-chair)
I know this letter is way overdue and you'll be 2 years old in only a few short weeks, but I wanted to make to record the things that I want to always remember about 22 and 23 month old you...because this version of you is pretty awesome.
One of the things I most want to remember about you is how affectionate and sympathetic you are as such a young boy. You hug and kiss me (and many others) many times a day. My favorite is when you have one arm around my neck and one arm around Papa's neck and bury your head into us and sigh. If someone around you is crying, you rub their back and ask them "Are you ok?". When you wrong someone, you always say you're sorry and you seem to mean it. You share your toys and food.
I remember writing early on in your life that I thought you were very curious. Now that you are talking, I'm finding out just how curious you really are. All day, everyday you are constantly asking us "why?" and again, "but whhhyyy?". I usually stop you after about 10 "whys", but Papa will keep answering those questions till all he can say is "to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever." You always seem satisfied with that final answer.
Your other favorite phrases are "I love you, bye!", "What haaaaappened?!", "see you later!" "What's this?", "I'm glad to see you" and "Come on!". You getting better at reciting the alphabet and you know your numbers to 10 and almost 20 (but they get a little mixed up). You are getting very adept at communicating your needs and will always change to "use your words" if you start out whining. You still always answer "red" if someone asks you what color something is. :)
You have a CRAZY sense of direction and you pay very close attention to the world around you. I am not kidding when I say that you know when we are in the proximity of a fire station or a train station before I can even see it. You know when we get close to the homes of people you love. You have very strong opinions about which way we walk and drive, and I think it's because you know which directions take us to which places. You get all of this from Papa. Just ask Nana James.
Your favorite things? "Builders" (construction vehicles), trains, cars, anything that goes; you love your animal friends who sleep in bed with you (right now it's Wolfie, Caterpillar and Elephant), you love reading, especially with your Papa ("Snug House Bug House" is your favorite!); you love real animals, especially kitties, birds and squirrels; you love being with your family and talking walks around Salem. You love to sing, use instruments, fix things, draw and run, run, run.
You call us by many names. "Papa", "Paaapppyyy", "Pappido", "Bwian" and "Daddy"; "Mommy", "Mama", "Hunny". Our favorite is when you run up to us and say "Hey buddies!".
Your family and friends are very important to you and you talk and think about them constantly. You ask for your grandparents, aunts, uncles and friends on a daily basis. You guess where they are and why you can't see them.. "Matt on train?", "Papa at work?", "Kimmie in car?".
This month you spent your first whole weekend away from us and even though I missed you like crazy, I knew you would do great. Of course you did (at least that's what Auntie Katie and Uncle Matt told me!) and I love that you are so low-key and enjoy spending time with other people.
You also love to work. If there is a vacuum, broom, rake around, you'll immediately throw yourself into cleaning or raking or sweeping. You often pick up after yourself, throw trash away and leave your shoes neatly at the doors of people's houses.
The other day you said your first unprompted prayer. You asked me if we could pray, then said "Dear Jesus, Thank you for food, thank you for Mommy, thank you for Pappy, thank you for the kitty comin', thank you for blankey. Amen" I love that you weren't just repeating words, but you totally got the point and made up your own prayer of thanks. It was beautiful.
A few weeks ago I was getting ready for church and you stopped playing, looked up at me and said "Mommy, you're beauuutiful". I wasn't prepared for that. Tears may or may not have been shed. I definitely want to remember that. :)
Oh, I could go on and on, but you gotta stop somewhere.
I love you sweet boy.