Category: Dear Mike

Dear Mike: Be Kind

My Dear Mikey –

Last year I posted a letter to you about September 11th and how Daddy and I hope that you grow up to be kind and see the good in the world. As an adult some days that is hard to do.

So many things are happening in the world right now that make my heart hurt. Some of these things are happening thousands of miles away but they are having a ripple effect and impacting our country. I hope you learn to realize that when people feel scared or threatened they don’t always make the best decisions, like remembering to be kind.

The one thing I am thankful for right now is that you are too young to ask the hard questions because I have no idea how I would answer you. I am actually asking a lot of hard questions myself and searching for the answer.

It’s times like these that Daddy and I want to remind you about the Principles of Unitarian Universalism. These are the ‘rules’ we are striving to raise you with. These principles represent what we believe and act as our moral compass.

I hope that when you are older and lose faith in the world or when everything seems confusing and chaotic, you find comfort in these principles and the strength to live these.

 

uu we believe kids

 

I’ll eat you up I love you so,

Momma xoxo

Dear Mike: September 2015

Dear Mike –

Whoa, September blew by! I have to admit – this is my favorite month! The weather is cooler, it’s Grandma and Daddy’s birthday and it’s when Daddy and I got married. It was a pretty laid back month for you – just hanging out and being a toddler.

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{Speech Therapy} Daddy and I decided to get some extra help with your speech. You were talking a lot, but it was really hard to make out what you were saying and you weren’t saying many sentences. Well kiddo, that has all changed. Miss Lisa has come over a few times and I am not sure you’ve stopped talking since! She thinks you are charming and catching on really quickly – but we knew that would be the case.

{Food} I am really worried about our grocery bill when you turn into a teenager. You are eating EVERYTHING in sight. I am pretty sure you ate 5 mandarin oranges today alone! I really like pudding (punning), macaroni (ma-nonie), chicken (shick-in) and anything that is on someone else’s plate.

{Playtime} Stickers are where it’s at kiddo. Bonus points if they are Minion stickers. You also are obsessed with cars – specifically the die cast cars from the grocery store. You always seem to find the Scion Xb and shout ‘Mommy car’ proudly. Also coloring and chalk are popular these days. OH! I can’t forget. You love to write your name. Well, spell it (over and over) while someone makes your hand write it.

{Books} Every night you get to read 2 books and it seems like we are back to Llama Llama Share (yamma yamma shay) or any book that has counting or the ABCs. You’ve been doing it for awhile, but you really like when we pause and you fill in the word.

Well my love bug, October is already turning out to be amazing.

I’ll eat you up I love you so,

Momma xoxo

Dear Mike: Summer 2015

My dear, sweet two year old –

I hope that when you read this letter you will understand how important the 12-4-1 Diaper Drive is in our lives and understand why you didn’t get a June (or July, or August for that matter) letter. It’s so hard to keep up sometimes because you are literally changing overnight. It seems daily you do something, your Dad and I give each other a ‘look’ and instantly deem you amazing.

{You Turned 2!} We had a great time celebrating your second birthday at Grandma and Grandpa’s house, which we turned in Mickey Mouse’s Clubhouse. We had all your favorite foods – cupcakes, hot dogs and Goldfish. You had a grand time running through the sprinkler with your friends, especially Mollie. Your favorite part was singing Happy Birthday to yourself. In fact, we’ve pretty much sung happy birthday to a pretend cake and blowing out the candles. birthday

{Beach Days} Daddy spent a lot of time at the beach growing up and we were eager to get you there as well! We started small by going to Sandy Point State Park on the Chesapeake Bay. You were a little hesitant about the sand and getting in the water, but before long you were sitting in the ‘surf’ and throwing sand. We went back a few more times and each time you were more and more excited. I have to admit, your favorite part of the beach is the snacks!

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{Books} You got your first library card for Anne Arundel County and not a moment too soon – you are reading up a storm! Each night you get at least two books and it’s a struggle to convince you that it’s time for bed. Your favorites are Go Digger Go (because Daddy does the sounds and beat boxes), Llama Llama, Chesapeake 1, 2, 3 and Chesapeake A, B, C. I love that you love books.

library

{Vacation} Daycare was closed for two weeks so Miss Rachel could have a much deserved break so we decided to take a mini-vacation to the beach! We stayed with Aunt Phyllis and Bubbe which meant you got to sleep in bed with Mommy and Daddy and chase Mellie the cat around yelling ‘me-oh, me-oh’. We went to swim in the bay and the cove we settled on was shallow enough for you to walk in the water which you thought was cool. You also explored the boardwalk in Rehoboth Beach and the highlight was playing enough skee-ball to win a toy car.

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{Baseball Game} For Father’s Day you got Dad tickets to a Bowie Baysox game. We weren’t sure how you would like it so we prepared for a quick exit. I must say – you LOVED it!  You happily sat in Mom’s seat and patiently waited for the next time you could cheer. And while you were waiting you chowed down on hot dogs. It was a really fun experience and next year we are planning on taking you more often AND getting you your own seat.

baseball

You had a great summer Bug. It was so much fun for me to see you grow and show Daddy and me how independent you are becoming – like climbing a ladder at the playground, wanting to water the flowers and have a little more unsupervised time. It’s hard to let you do those things, but each and every time you prove you CAN do it and if you stumble, you shake it off and keep on keeping on.

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I’ll eat you up I love you so,

Momma, xoxo

Happy 2nd Birthday Mike!

My sweet Bug –

I’m sitting at my desk on this rainy day looking at your pictures on my desk from the last month or so – you watching the snow while Charlie watches your cracker, you wearing your White Rabbit costume at Miranda’s birthday party and you just being you at the BWI Airplane park. Looking at these photos reminds me of a few lyrics from Marcus Foster’s song ‘You My Love’:

It’s true, my love, so kind are your eyes,
I see them in the darkest skies.
If it’s true, my love, I’ve got to see the way
I’ll love you till my dying day.

I can’t help but feel a little bittersweet about your 2nd birthday tomorrow. I know Daddy feels the same. We miss have a little baby to snuggle, but now we have a big boy to snuggle! And you are the snuggliest. You love to bury yourself between Daddy and me in the bed and pull up the covers demanding ‘sea-goo’ time. Sometimes you even grab our arm and drape it over you. If you catch Daddy and I hugging, you run right up and want in on that action. You are truly our little love bug.

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This has been an exciting year for you! Right before your first birthday last year we were watching and waiting for you to take your first steps unassisted. Now you are climbing on chairs, maneuvering up stairs and fearlessly walking back down. I won’t even mention chasing you as you squeal with glee.

You’ve gone through some other changes as well. We made the big move from Centreville, Virginia to Crofton, Maryland in January for a variety of reasons and none that we regret. The main reason was to be closer to family and this has proven to be so beneficial. Your Bubbe, Grandma and Grandpa have visited often and we have seen Mollie a lot. Daddy and I are thrilled you will be growing up closer to the family that is so important to us.

With the move came a new daycare. It was obvious by day 2 that I worried myself sick about nothing. You have flourished there, learning new things and making friends. You give me a hug, go to Miss Rachel and immediately you are waving, saying ‘au revoir’ and blowing kisses. If you do cry it is once in a blue moon and probably only for my benefit.

Oh my love, you do have your moments like we all do. You have mastered the ‘lay down on the floor and fake cry’ quite well, but it never lasts long and you are always quick to come find us so we can move on with our day. You can’t keep up the grumpiness for long, I don’t think it’s in your nature!

Mikey, as you turn two my biggest wish for you is to know how much you are cherished and adored. You are growing into quite a kind, easy going, and hilarious kid.  These are all things your Daddy and I dreamed about while watching you roll around in my tummy.

I’ll eat you up I love you so.

Momma, xoxo

Mike: February 2015

My Mike-a-roni:

As I am typing this my head is singing Do You Want to Build a Snowman from your current obsession, Frozen. You randomly said to Daddy a few weeks ago ‘let it go’ (or so it seemed) so I started playing the song from Frozen. Apparently you have seen the movie before and now it is all you want to do. You call it ‘Go’. It’s pretty cute, but has caused some meltdowns. I am sure in March I will be so sick of the songs I will want to scream, but for now I love how your face lights up and you gasp when the movie comes on. It’s worth it kid.

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It’s been a pretty quiet month, we’ve just focused on getting settled in Maryland and the weather was no so pleasant. We are eagerly awaiting spring for when we can venture outside and check out the playgrounds.

You’ve been quite the happy helper these days! You love your ‘boom’ (broom) and walk around with it sweeping invisible (or not so invisible) dirt. You help us throw away trash, empty the dishwasher and the dryer. I love seeing you follow directions! I know it won’t last, but for now, we are using it to our advantage.

You’ve taken a liking the Buddha. I happened to have a few small statues from my trips to China because Grandpa likes the Laughing Buddha and you point and say ‘boo-doe’. You even take the big one and rub his belly! It’s so cute to see you walking around carrying your Boo-Doe statues.

You are becoming such a little boy my love. Daddy and I are so enjoying seeing things through your eyes. Everyday is literally like Christmas morning – what excitement will happen?

I’ll eat you up I love you so,

Momma xoxo

 

Mike: January 2015

My sweet, sweet Mike-a-roni –

I can’t believe it is already February! January was a whirlwind of packing, moving, adjusting and unpacking. You – my sweet boy – were SUCH a trooper. Your Daddy and I still marvel at how you only had a few moments when you had some frustration the past month. You would quickly hit us then go in for a hug. It was a crazy month.

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{Moving} You had a rough night before our official moving day so you got to snuggle in bed with Momma. Then the next morning you hung out with Grandma, Miss Joyce, Aunt Ray Ray and Mollie while the movers did their thing. You even went to Chick-Fil-A! You had a grand time running around in the basement before all the furniture came in.

{Food} I keep joking that we need to start socking money away for groceries so we can afford to feed you in high school. If it isn’t nailed down, you are eating it. This includes french fries, chicken tenders, apple slices, applesauce (in the pouch, which you daintily hold in the corners), Mickey Mouse cheese snacks, Annie’s fruit snacks, crackers (ga-gas) and pasta. So much pasta.

{Daycare} You started your French Immersion daycare mid-month and it was harder for Momma and Daddy than for you. You did cry, but Miss Rachel said you stopped pretty quickly. Now that you are a few weeks in you attempt to jump out of your carseat, ring the doorbell and wave ‘au revoir’ to me. Miss Rachel was very impressed with how quickly you adapted and how much you eat (see above).

{TV} It’s not my proudest moment, but you’ve watched a lot of TV while everyone is packing and unpacking. You are obsessed with Chuggington (“Choo Choo”), Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and Curious George (“Jew”). You enthusiastically ‘sing’ along when you know the right words. Or the wrong words. Whatever – you are my child.

{This and That}

You are best friends with the ceiling fans (“Fay”), you point them out, get very upset when they are not on and wave bye bye to them when we leave the room.

You have discovered wheels. You have a bunch of Matchbox cars and you love zooming them around over Mount Momma or Daddy. Everything is ‘Tuck’. And oddly enough, they all say ‘choo-choo’. Perhaps we will work on the difference between a truck and a train. One thing at a time though.

Well sweet pea, the theme of February will be fun, unpacking and finding our groove. It will certainly not be a problem for you Mr. Go With the Flow.

I’ll eat you up I love you so,

Momma xoxo

 

Mike: December 2014

To my little monster Mike,

I can’t believe last year we were waiting not so patiently for you to crawl. We would put you in front of the tree and you could balance on your belly while fussing. You were frustrated. We were frustrated. But not long after the holidays you figured it out. Flash forward to THIS year and we couldn’t get you to sit still! It’s funny what changes in a year.

{Holidays} Oh what fun it was during the holidays! You are a lucky kid who gets to celebrate both Hanukkah and Christmas. You got some awesome gifts and though you were still confused on what was going on, you figured out that you got to keep what you opened. Honestly, if we got you one thing you would have been thrilled.

We also went to the Bull Run Festival of Lights, a tradition for Daddy and I, and the whole time you ate Goldfish and said ‘ohhhhh’.

You were fascinated with the tree, and even said ‘Tee’. We decorated with the nonbreakable ornaments on the bottom, so you loved taking them off and trying to put them back on (which was really stuffing them in the tree).

You were not too keen on Santa Claus. We went to see him at our community center and you were okay running up to give him a high five, but that was about it. Maybe next year. Or maybe not.

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{Operation Relocation} You probably don’t realize it yet, but we signed a new lease in December! So mid-January we are moving from our apartment in Fairfax County Virginia to a townhouse in Anne Arundel County, Maryland. We are very very excited and very nervous for this transition. The good news is we will be so much closer to our family! I hope you see this as a new adventure. It’s the cutest little townhouse at the end of a street near parks and a school. I could immediately see you riding your trike down the street.

{Daycare} You also met your new daycare provider, Miss Rachel. You took to her and her daughter’s really quickly and even played with some of their toys. We are nervous about this transition as well, but know you are in good hands. Plus, you will be learning French! Wee-wee!

{TV} Your favorite shows right now include Doc McStuffins (you say Doc when you see her on books or toys), Curious George (or Jew as you call him), Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and lately your REAL favorite has been Chuggington. When it comes up on Netflix, you point and say ‘choo-choo’ and even dance to the theme song. It’s not a bad cartoon, and significantly less creepy than Thomas the Tank Engine.

{Words} Your vocabulary is growing so quickly! Sometimes you say something clear as day and Dad and I just look at each other in surprise and pride. You’ve been saying:

  • Ba-bub (Bubbles for a bath)
  • Ah-poo (apple, which is usually any fruit)
  • Buh-bye (this is the funniest. You say it so clearly as you are walking away waving. Sometimes sarcastically).
  • Up (both for up and down)

{Snuggles} You are still such a sweet snuggler. You love pulling the blankets over us on the couch, or walking up to Daddy who sits on the floor and plant yourself in his lap. You are giving hugs and kisses on your terms and that makes them 10 times as sweet. I know the time will come when you won’t want to snuggle as much, but I hope we have awhile longer.

{Food} Your love of food comes and goes. Right now you will eat anything smothered in tomato sauce. Also french fries, sliced apples or pickles.

{Helping} You are becoming quite the helper! You are great with directions, like when we ask you to put your shoes in the basket, and cleaning up. The other day you knocked over Charlie’s water dish and then we handed you a towel and you ‘wiped’ the floor. Granted it was the kitchen floor and not the dining room, but once we redirected you, you figured it out. You also love opening the microwave. The minute it beeps you run over the open it. I hope asking for help keeping the house in order is always this easy!

december

January is going to be a big adventure for you sweet boy. One of many many exciting adventures you will have in your lifetime.

I’ll eat you up I love you so,

Momma, xoxo

 

November 2014

Dearest Baby Boy Who is No Longer a Baby –
You are seriously no longer a baby. I mean, you will always be MY baby, but you are clearly a toddler. A running, climbing, vocal, sponge of a toddler and I am loving every minute of it!

Kid, you blow my mind almost every day by popping out with a new word, dance or skill. The other night we were cleaning up from dinner and Daddy-O said ‘say all done’. You looked up and said ‘all done’. While Daddy-O and I stared at each other in disbelief, you acted like it it was no big deal and you’ve been saying it since the delivery room.

Daddy and I were also talking the other night that you are so purposeful now. When you walk somewhere, it is for a reason. We might not know it, but you sure do. You are ‘helping’ around the house by putting your shoes in the basket and carrying the broom around.

You are also very purposeful when you are unhappy. We are working on gentle hands because when you get worked up you tend to slap, but when we say no and hold your hand you immediately burst into hysterical tears. I am thinking it is because you are frustrated and also because you did something that made us upset. You are learning though, just like we are.

 

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Here are some highlights from your November:

{Snuggle Bug} You are our snuggle bug! You stride right on up and settle into our laps and lean back. You also have managed to climb on the couch to sit with us and usually cover us up with blankets. What I love most about this is it’s on your terms. I always joke about stealing kisses from you, but it is the best feeling in the world when YOU chose to snuggle. And damn if you aren’t the best snuggler.

{Words} Your vocabulary is quickly growing and I can’t even keep up with my list! Applesauce (app-o-saw), airplane (air-pain), up, baby (bay-BE), Wubba (bubba), bellybutton (bell-butt), Curious George (or-g), bye bye (buh-bye), Oh Toodles (oh toooooo)

{Thanksgiving} This year’s Thanksgiving was vastly different. You aren’t a baby, remember? You and your cousin Mollie were such troopers with all the activity. Grandma’s carrots were your favorite. You got lots of time with Mollie and even hugged each other!

{Christmas Tree} We were so excited to put up the tree this year because you were going to love it – and we were right! We put it up while you were napping and the minute you saw it you started pointing like ‘look! A tree’! We ‘decorated’ it together and you were very interested in the ornaments. We are letting you take them off the tree and play with them (since they aren’t breakable at your level) and thankfully the newness has worn off. Grandma came over to babysit one day and it was the first thing you led her to.

{Interests} Your interests are changing every day, but you are still a lover of books. Not so much being read to, but reading yourself. We’ve gotten in the habit of putting a book in the crib with you and that buys us a little more time between when you wake up and when you want to get up. Also Curious George, anything stick like (brooms, windshield scrappers, etc), chewy fruit snacks, and doing choreography to Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, BINGO and Itsy Bitsy Spider.
The next few months are going to be really busy with the holidays and moving – but just having you around makes it more fun.

I’ll eat you up I love you so!
xoxo,
Momma

Mike: October 2014

Well hello there 17 month old Mikester!

I say it almost every month, but good grief you are growing and changing so much! Daddy and I love to see your blossoming personality – you are becoming quite a ham. We get these odd, questioning side glances when you walk by, we laugh, and then you turn and do this huge, booming, forced laugh. I would swear you do it just to make us laugh.

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{Halloween} Of course we have to start with Halloween! This year you were more sure about things than last year, but still hesitant. I made you a shark costume (which, to toot my own horn, turned out ah-mazing) and you dressed up for our community’s Halloween party, church’s Halloween service and then on the actually day. We only went to a few houses, but by the last one you were happily filling your bucket. At just about every house you really just wanted to walk inside and make yourself comfortable. Lollipops were the candy of choice.

{Pumpkin Patch} We had a great time running around Yankey Farm and picking out pumpkins. You rode the cow train and played in the corn box. It was just enough excitement for a fall morning.

{Words} We’ve had a lot of long and involved conversations lately, but you seem to be the only one who understands what we are talking about. So far you say:

  • Bubbles (bah-bulls): Bath time.
  • Is this? (Iz dis?): What is this, with a pointing finger.
  • Uh Oh (uhhhh-ohhhhh): Something happens. Anything really.
  • Shoes (chews): The things on your feet. Including socks.
  • Cheese (chhhhh-a-ez): Any time a camera comes out.

{Swimming 2.0} You’ve always been our water baby, but it’s been awhile since we’ve been in a pool. We decided to head over to Cub Run one afternoon and we weren’t sure how you were going to do now that you are a toddler and curious. We clearly had nothing to worry about. You’re laughs were the best EVER – pure excitement, from the belly and mouth wide open. You walked around the shallow end, kicked in the deep end and splashed everywhere in between. Dad and I kept looking at each other because we loved seeing you have so much fun.

{Clifton Days} We spent a couple hours at Clifton Days and you had a blast playing on the playground and dancing. We even watched the train go by!

{Eating} You are still a pretty good eater, there isn’t a hot dog you’ve met that you haven’t devoured. And as always, food is better when it comes from someone else’s plate. One new development though is the utensils. It seems you’ve connected that the food goes on a fork or spoon and in your mouth. You get VERY frustrated if we try to feed you! I would bet 85% of the time you manage to spear the food and get (most) of it in your mouth. Sometimes you ‘ask’ us to put the food on the fork, you eat it, hand back the fork, and begin again. It makes for a very long meal, but it’s worth it to see you figure out utensils.

Until next month sweet boy.

I’ll eat you up I love you so –

Momma xoxo

Mike: September 2014

My Crazy Mikester –

I can’t believe how fast the summer flew, and then September went in a blink of an eye! It was a busy month for you kiddo, but it was full of lots of fun. You are becoming more and more active and more and more opinionated every day. I LOVE seeing your personality shine, sometimes I think you are trying to make us laugh on purpose – like when we look up and when you catch our eye you give a huge, cheesy grin.

You are pretty much RUNNING everywhere and delivering things you find to us. This includes pens, electronics, bottles, remotes and yes, sharp objects we didn’t know were in reach. You are more giving with your hugs and kisses and point to what you want. Daddy and I are pretty sure you want to talk, and think that you are, but we just aren’t understanding.

 

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{Birthday Season} September is birthday season for our family since Daddy and Grandma have the same birthday. This year you got Dad an iPad cover with pictures on it and a card you ‘signed’ yourself. We had cake and Bubbe came to visit. We also went out to dinner where you quickly charmed all the waitresses.

{Burkefest} We went to Burkefest this year and it was WAY more fun now that you are a toddler. We had lunch and then you played in the tot lot. It was really neat to see you run off and play independently and interact, in only the way a toddler can, with the other kids. We really love these family moments.

{Harvest Festival} For Grandma’s birthday we ended up going to Harvest Festival. Mommy used to go to this fundraiser when she was little and it was cool to see how it evolved and have you enjoy it as well. While you wanted nothing to do with the sweet treats (which made us question your genes), the highlight of the event was the awesome playground. You and Mollie ran around like crazy kids taking different paths, going down and up slides and exploring.

{Favorite ‘Game’} Your current favorite game gives everyone belly laughs. After bath time we sit on the bed and ever so gently tap you. Then you flop on the bed as if Floyd Mayweather hit you. Sometimes we just point our finger and you flop over laughing. We don’t know where this game started, but it’s hilarious and wears you out in no time.

{Food} You my son are a chow hound. You especially like what other people are eating. You really like hot dogs, peaches, yogurt, ice cream and anything pasta related. It surprises me how happy you are with veggies like broccoli and carrots since I am not a vegetable fan myself.

{Charlie} You and Charlie are becoming quite a pair. I describe it as you being a needy friend following Charlie around squeeking his toy crying ‘why don’t you love meeeeeeee’. But more often than not Charlie lays down in your room while you are falling asleep and gets very excited when you come home. You guys are going to be the best of friends soon – I know it!

Well my sweet boy, another month is here and I have a hunch it is going to be a fun one.

I’ll eat you up I love you,

Momma xoxo