A few days ago you turned thirty-three months old. I just turned thirty-three myself so for the next few weeks we can both enjoy being thirty-three! Not that I am anywhere near as adorable, inquisitive, or entertaining as you, but I find it amusing just the same.
I know you are only two (though three is JUST around the corner) but your clothing requirements have become increasingly more high maintenance. Firstly, you insist upon sleeping in pajamas. Not just at night, but during nap time as well. (I actually get this one, because why wouldn’t you sleep in pajamas just because it’s the middle of the day?) But upon waking from your nap, you refuse to put on the clothing you wore that morning. On days when it’s chilly in the morning and hot in the afternoon, it makes sense, but most days I feel like I am just doing laundry to keep up with your four (or five, if you have a special activity, like ballet that requires specific clothing) outfit changes. Man, having a clothing diva can be exhausting!
It’s no secret that we are big soccer fans. Timbers, Thorns, Pilots, we love them all. So it makes sense that you would get excited about soccer as well. One of the basic Timber’s Army cheers has a line, “When I root, I root for the Timbers!” and the other day I heard you singing in the car, “When I root, I root for soccer!” I’m glad our enthusiasm has been contagious.
You are such a determined little lady that sometimes I forget how little you really are. But you manage to hold your own and continually amaze me with the things you can do when you put your mind to it. If Ana jumps on her bike, you hop on yours. If she digs out her scooter, you drag out yours. You are very active and just love to keep busy!
Last weekend we ended up with a free day so we decided to go to Seaside. As soon as I said “beach” you ran upstairs and grabbed your sand buckets. I wasn’t sure if the weather would allow for actual beach time, but you were so excited that as soon as we realized the day was going to be nice, we made it happen. You love the sand. And the ocean. And running across the sand into the ocean. The sheer joy and shrieks of glee allowed me to put aside my utter loathing of the sand and it’s ability to coat every single surface instantaneously, and just enjoy some time on the beach with my family.
Speaking of messy fun, the other day I let you play with Play Dough. I mean, really play with Play Dough. All the tools, all the colors, anything you wanted to do, we did it. I even let you play with multiple colors at a time and smoosh them together until they became a lovely vomit color (whatever you do, don’t tell Ana. I never let her play with more than one color at a time). It was fascinating to watch you alternating between being so serious and focused, to giggling as you squished the molding compound between your fingers.
I love watching the excitement on your face when you learn something or figure something out. Knowledge is so empowering and I love that you get the satisfaction from it as much as I do. For example, you have always called “balloons” “babloons.” And while that is incredibly adorable and it made me smile every time you said it, it’s not correct. I know you can pronounce it properly, so I worked you with, breaking it down: “Say ‘ba’ now say ‘loon’ and try it all together ‘ba-loon'” until you could say it. When you finally said it, “balloon!” your face lit up, and you started clapping! I think you were more excited than I was. Now every time you say “balloon” both of us beam with pride.
Earlier this month us Bateman girls had the opportunity to spend the week at Girl Scout Camp. Originally I just signed Ana up to go as a camper, but the camp needed more adult volunteers. I said I couldn’t commit to being there for the whole week because I stay home with you. Siblings are allowed to attend the camps “Pixie/Widget” program, but they have to be three years old and potty trained. They said they would make a special exception to their rule if I volunteered to work with the Pixies (3-5 year olds) so you could be with me. I agreed, despite the fact that camp was from 8:30am-3:30pm and you still take naps, but I just made sure that your dad was on stand-by to come pick you up if you had a meltdown. But I never had to call him. You were amazing. You were the youngest camper out there and I could not have been more impressed with your positive attitude. You are such a trooper.
You had a fabulous time at camp. You made friends, did arts and crafts, learned silly songs (that you and Ana still continue to sing every time we are driving in the car), went on nature hikes, made “armpit fudge” in cooking class, and just had an all-around fun time. It was exhausting, but it was totally worth it.
We also made some time in our schedule this month to meet some friends for Oaks Park Chipper Preschool morning. We hadn’t been at all this year and I wasn’t sure how you would do on the rides. Most of the rides the parents can ride with you, but there are several that are just for the little ones. But you loved them all! On one of the rides a little girl sitting next to you started crying and you actually comforted her. Then when the ride was over and you were unbuckled, you reached over and gave her a hug! It was one of the sweetest things I have ever seen.
Hadley, you are such a riot. You are always saying things that crack me up. I swear, I laugh or smile all day long when I am with you. You have such a positive perspective and I just love to see things through your eyes. Your kind heart, your silly nature, and the way you are so expressive of your love toward family and friends make me so proud to be your mama.
All my love,