Monday, April 28, 2014

Dear Joseph,


You are officially a one year old!  I am in denial.  I have spent an entire year a mother, and what’s more, a mother to you.  I am so honored and priveleged to have you in my life.  You have a sweet personality and definitely know how to make me smile and thank Heavenly Father each day for bringing you to me when I most needed it.


This year you have blossomed so much.  I was surprised at how easy motherhood has come to me and how patient I have been.  You never cried your first week of life, but then you found your voice and kept it ever since.  We would call you our little tiger and it suited you nicely.  However, you also had a lovely gummy smile and I’m a little sad to see it go as you get more and more teeth.  You have long beautiful hair and it even grew the way I like it: long on top and short on the sides.  Makes you look like a cute little boy.  I hope all your siblings get hair similar to yours.  You seemed dark when you were born and I was excited to see some Japanese in you, but it turned out you were just jaundice.  But I prefer you just the way you are.  Your eyes lightened up and to this day I still have no idea what color they are.  A blueish, grayish, greenish, hazelish color?  I just named four colors there.  They are a mystery and I’m sure girls will love that!  You are becoming quite small for your age as well.  This last doctor’s appointment you were in the 5% for both height and weight.  Gives me more excuses to cook with butter and cream, though!



I love how you act differently with mom and dad.  With dad, you laugh and play and are content by yourself if Daddy needs to study.  With mom, you want her by your side at all times and will follow me around.  It also means you tend to whine more with me around.  If I leave and come back, as soon as you see me you start whining, but everyone says that you were just fine until I walked in the door.  I think that means you love me?  You don’t say any real words yet, but you have started a copying stage where you love to copy people’s actions and it’s very cute.  If I say “peek-a-boo” you start hitting your head (haven’t gotten the hang of it but we’re entertained).  If I say “yay” you start clapping.  If we can get you going, you have a daintly little wave you give people where you just turn your wrist like the queen.  My favorite though is when your dad and I were saying a prayer at meal time and happened to look over to see you fold your arms and bow your head.  I was so proud of you then, but it also let me know that we needed to watch what we did and said in case you picked up not so proud actions.You are still very cuddly and will put your head on my shoulder when I carry you and will wrap your arms around my neck.  While you do that you make sure to get a sturdy grip in my hair so I have a harder time prying you from me.  You do NOT like loud noises, and that's probably my fault.  We are pretty quiet here at home.  If I even try to vacuum, blow-dry my hair, or use the blender, you let me know it's not okay!  You still love your binky and it is heaven-sent.  Hopefully we can wean you off before it harms your teeth.  You only have three (the last popped up just last week) but we still need to think about that.


You have a very unique crawl and people love it.  We call it your Smeagol crawl.  You’ve been doing it for a couple months, but haven’t really switched to regular crawling, but I think you won’t until you start walking, which I have a feeling it won’t be for a while.  You started pulling yourself up to your knees, but refuse to stand on your feet when we try to help you.  You’ll get it, though.  I have stopped trying to compare you to others.  It’s not fair to you and it leaves me thinking that I’m failing you somehow.  So, I’ve come to just go with the flow, but help you in any way I can along the way.


You love table food.  It makes it easy in some ways, but not so fun in other ways.  You don’t like to drink that much, so it leaves you a little plugged.  We’ve struggled a little with that since you were born, but hopefully one day you’ll understand how to work a sippy cup without mama’s help.  You’re favorite foods include cereal, milk, sweet potatoes, cheese, cookies and icecream.  Oh, cookies and icecream!  If you are crying and NOTHING seems to work, we found out we just pull out some icecream and you are very content the rest of the time.  Maybe not the best way to start, but sometimes you got to do what you got to do as a parent.  And cookies.  You can down cookies and we have to be careful not to leave any in your reach or they are gone.

 
I see you learning new things literally every day. Like a couple days ago, you learned to climb up stairs (not down yet).  Yesterday you learned to roll from your stomach to back so you can crawl (a little late, but you still did it).  You also learned in the past week or two how to use a sippy-cup better, a straw, lifting your arms up when you want to be lifted, how to blow a kiss, and how to open our bathroom cupboards.  You are at a really fun age and I’m enjoying it.  In some ways, we are saying good bye to babyhood, though, and I’m just not quite ready to have you leave and not quite ready to start thinking of having another child.  Alas, you will have to grow up at some point.  I hope with all my heart that you will love the gospel even more than me and grow to be your best self, what your father and I see in you every day.


I love you so much, Joseph.  Like I said, I am so blessed to be your mother and I wouldn’t trade you for anything.  I wouldn’t trade you for a degree or a high paying job or for travelling or any other silly thing that gets in the way for other people.  My sweet Joey, always be yourself.  Always stay true to what you know is right.  Always serve, for that is how you find happiness.  Always love the Lord, and He will surely bless you.  Happy first birthday, Joey, and I hope that this year you will shine out even more!

Love,

Mom