is almost 23 pounds, almost 33 inches tall, and 18 months and 1 day old! Its our boy Joel!
You are absolutely everything I could have wished for in a little boy. You are a cuddle bug, yet fiercely independent at the same time. I'm so proud of everything that you have accomplished and I love watching you grow more every day. It makes me sad that you're quickly leaving babyhood behind, but each day with you had proven to be more and more amazing, so I try to enjoy and treasure the moments we have together each day and look forward to watching you continue to develop into your own little person.
You are brave. You will climb anything and everything that stands still (and sometimes try to climb Lexi). Your recent conquests have been the swingset and Daddy's ladder. I cannot believe how quickly you have mastered slides and ladders; you definitely are gifted in the climbing area.
You are a lover. We have finally gotten you to the point where you will (most of the time) give sweet, close-mouthed kisses. Although you do save some big sloppy ones for me, and honestly I love them. :) You really love your big sister and are constantly giving her hugs out of the blue. And she thinks that's the best thing ever. Lately when I've been dropping you off in the childcare room at the Y you'll let go of me, cling to Alyssa for a few moments, and then its like you know that you've got your big sister to protect and comfort you, so you're on your way to play. The last time I picked you up you didn't want to leave, which is quite the change from you bursting into tears as soon as I walked back in the room and rushing off to get our red bag so that we could get out of there ASAP!
Your favorite word right now seems to be "see". You use it to point out things that you've done as well as things that excite you and you want to share. You love to put other people's shoes on and you'll clomp around the house saying "see!? see?!" as you point out your accomplishment to anyone who will look.
We struggle with your love of hitting and pulling Alyssa's hair. I keep trying to tell her that you're just jealous of her curls and long hair, but I don't think she's going to buy that much longer. You do seem to love to hit whether with toys or with your hands. Its not always out of frustration or anger (although you do do that often and I can't say I always blame you because you're sister needs to work on her sharing and compromising skills); sometimes I think you just don't understand "nice" touches. It'll come. And you're always ready with kisses and hugs after you hit someone, so that helps.
Another love of yours these days is Lexi. You love to lay on her, climb on her, and give her hugs and kisses. It makes me miss Joey because I think you would really get a kick out of her being close to your own size. You're such a little fire ball of energy, I think you could really give her a run for her money. Of course, maybe that's not such a great thing. Maybe someday we'll talk Daddy into getting a smaller dog again. :)
I love you buddy bear.