Wednesday, March 28
Monday, March 26
Yesterday, I brought Iris outside to walk and play in the rain. We got to see her very first rainbow! I'm not sure that she really acknowledged it, but she did discover a large muddy puddle in the road at the base of a hill.
Thursday, March 22
My little love, your Papa and I have been astounded by your development lately. Your personality shines out more than ever before. You are curious, though still as tentative as you've always been. If you can imagine a sarcastic child, that is you. You are quite serious, but still playful. You certainly do let out peals of laughter when tickled. You delve into activities that require fine motor skills or problem solving, but you will not (yet) run off across the playground by yourself or climb anything other than the couch or a set of stairs. You seem not to like getting dirty (unless it involves smearing food on the table). You are also very observant of people. Once you have stared into their eyes for a time, weighing their intentions, you slowly open up and become more social.
You really enjoy watching youtube videos of animals making noises, and love to imitate all of them. You can meow, woof, neigh, baa, moo, caw, and a whole host of others. Your favorite animal sound is "roar!" You've also taken up a certain high pitch shrieking which is a sound all your own. You can use your words with intention to get your needs met, most notably: more, chair, bye bye, up, back, no and thank you. In the last two days, you've learned to recognize and say the letter "I" and can even pick it out of the group of 26 alphabet magnets on the fridge.
You can point to almost every part of your body, now including your forehead, cheeks, chin, neck, and knees. You have taken up balance exercises on the edge of the coffee table - you plant your hands on the surface and lean your hips forward on the edge to suspend your legs in the air. Sometimes you'll do this for a good twenty minutes at a time! You can take your own shirts and jackets off (with some squealing and frustration) and you are working on learning to put your own shoes on.
You love to eat roasted asparagus, corned beef, yogurt and snack bars made from a mix of figs, nuts and other fruits. You adore mandarin orange slices, but we think you may have an unfortunate sensitivity to them since your skin has broken out in a bit of a bumpy rash. You are still nursing and love your "memems" as much as ever. You usually want to feed yourself now and have become very adroit with your fork and spoon.
Your hand-eye coordination has also developed to the point that you can attentively and easily hammer the balls through your "pound and roll tower." You can kick a ball, throw it forward and behind, and you are amazed when we throw it up into the air and catch it. You will tell me when you've gone "poo poo" or have a very wet diaper, and will point to the wipes and lay down for me to change you. You will also tell me if you've made a mess. You'll run to come get me and show me where it is, usually coconut milk on the carpet, and announce, "ohhhh! mee! mee!"
You have started helping me "read" books now, by excitedly starting or finishing sentences with memorized words. Your favorites to read are 'On the Night You Were Born', 'Bear Wants More' and 'The Little Mouse, the Red Ripe Strawberry, and the Big Hungry Bear'. You love to dress up in my clothes while we're folding laundry; you prance around the house with a sly smile as you try not to trip on the draping fabric. You play with the kitty rather roughly these days, and you've received a few swats from him because of it!
One of your favorite things is when your Papa and I kiss. You will grab one of us in each hand by our shirts or hair and push our faces together over and over, with a look of solemn approval on your face. You do get upset when we hug each other, though - maybe you feel left out or like we could be hurting each other somehow. You've also discovered that when you cover your eyes, you can magically 'disappear' from our sight, and you become quite gleeful at surprising us when you reappear with a "boo!"
You are expressive, sensitive, loving and strong. You engage life with delicate attention to every detail of what you can perceive (which is rather a lot.) You are a joy to behold and we are privileged to be the parents of your unique vision. We love you!
Thursday, March 1
Marius came home to us on Tuesday of this week!
Iris was a little bit nervous at first, but that didn't last long. Even before we left the airport, she was already reaching for his hand and asking for his kisses. By the time we got home, she was sitting in his lap and hugging him. There is no doubt that she remembers her Papa and greatly missed him while he was away.
Marius will soon have two weeks off from work to spend time with us and to relax after his deployment. I've breathed so many sighs of relief since he returned happy, healthy and as much my loving husband as ever.
Our family is whole again.