As 2014 begins I cannot help but reflect on 2013 and all that it was for our family. This year saw you experience so many firsts and you grew not only in size, but also in personality and abilities. You continue to amaze me everyday with your natural gifts, loving spirits and your silly, energetic and comical ways.
This year we have experienced so many of the highs and lows that life has to offer. From Papa’s cancer to every cold, flu and fever, we’ve faced many illnesses and come out the stronger for each and everyone. With positive news from Papa’s doctors we can feel confident that he is currently cancer-free. While I thought that toilet training would never end, once you decided diapers were for babies you ditched the diapers and the pull ups and embraced all that it meant to be ‘big boys.’
This year, more than any other year I struggled with finding a balance between work and family. I wanted to spend every minute that I could with you but instead spent hours and hours and many late nights working which left me tired, grumpy and not as loving and present as I should have been. I am sorry for every moment I spent on my phone and my computer when I should have been playing with you. This year I vow to make a change. I hope to define work time and family time and be truly present at both.
I have loved watching you become more independent and I thank God every day that you are having less and less temper tantrums and using your words more often. I am so thankful for your kind and gentle spirits and your amazing capacity to love. Your hearts are so big and you never miss an opportunity to tell me and your family that you love us. Each and every time that you say “I love you mommy” I think that my heart will explode. I truly cannot express how much I love you.
While I cannot possibly remember all of the best parts of this year, here are some of the highlights of 2013:
- First family cruise – Carnival Breeze
- First Team Sport – U3 Soccer
- First School – Montessori – Casa
- First Canoe Ride – Lake Champlain, Vermont
- First Snowman – December 2013 – “Frosty”
- First movie at the theatre – Disney’s Planes
- First pony ride – local fair
- First roller coaster ride – local fair
- Toilet Training – goodbye to diapers
- Trips to Florida, Vermont, NY State, Blue Mountain, Toronto
- Road trip from Ontario to Florida – over 6000 kms driven in our “blue car”
- A Thomas the Train themed birthday party and a Day Out with Thomas in St. Thomas, ON
Your Favourite Things in 2013
- Hours of playing with your Thomas the Train toys
- A deepening love for our pets: Samson the cat and Jackson the dog.
- A zillion honeycrisp apples consumed – it is wonder you haven’t turned into apples with the number you eat each and every day!
- Your new found love for Almond Milk and your deliberate distinctions between ‘regular milk’ and ‘almond milk’ depending on your mood
- An obsession with fire trucks, fire men and any type rescue vehicles.
- Your favourite trips through town to make sure that we drive over every train track we can find
- Beginning to speak Spanish to your Dad and your family in Mexico
- Thousands of miles on your trunkis as you race them back and forth around the house and every hotel lobby we visit
- Your pillow pets, soothers and new Thomas the Train quilts
Thank you for putting up with my ‘photo shoots’ in favourite outfits, specific seasons or when I am trying out a new camera lens. Thank you for being such great travellers and for remembering to say please and thank you (most of the time). Thank you for sharing your love of trains, fire trucks, racoons and books. Thank you for the hours of playtime, cuddletime and new adventures.
N1 you are the sweetest, kindest little boy I have ever met. Your heart is so full of love that it sometimes skips a beat. You’ve taken on the role of big brother at every moment and relish any opportunity to play with your brother. While you love being a twin I sense that you love when we do things together just Mom and son. While you are very sensitive to loud noises, strange situations and any stress around, you are also brave, courageous and more mature than a 3.5 year old often is. You look for love from everyone and need more hugs, kisses and back rubs than your brother. I cherish our cuddle time and you break my heart each time you cower or show fear. I worry that your brother often steals the spotlight and hope that you find the things that you love to do that are separate and different from your brother. You are such a special boy with a kind and loving spirit.
N2 you are the ham of the family. Smiling, laughing, flirting and funny faces are your speciality. You are often louder and more demanding than your brother so it sometimes seems like you get more attention than him. Your emotions are BIG. You are either happy or angry and rarely anything in between. You worship Papa and look forward to any opportunity to see him. You spend every minute you can sitting on my lap of ‘hiding’ behind me. It sometimes seems like you cannot get enough time with me. You LOVE to help out around the house. Any ‘chore’ activity or helping hand you can give makes you so pleased and proud. You yearn to be a ‘big boy.’ You were the first one toilet trained and you enjoy pointing out any accidents your brother has. While you are technically the 2nd child, you love the spotlight and the attention. When you cannot think of something to say, you tell me that you love me. You are a fun, loving and energetic little boy.
While you cannot read yet, this letter is a chance for us to remember this time and reflect on all that you were as you get ready to turn 4. I hope that you never stop giggling and laughing at the antics of your brother, that you will always consider your twin an extension of yourself, and that you will always know that no matter how frustrated I get with your sometimes, I love you more than you can ever know.
May 2014 be our best year yet. Looking forward to creating so many more memories with you.