How well we remember the day we learned about you. We were so overjoyed that we would become parents for the second time. We didn't know until you were born if you were "son G" or "daughter H", but we already loved you! Your big sister often pretended she was pregnant, too, and seemed to understand as best she could that a new baby was coming to our house.
What happiness to finally meet you face to face!
We felt so amazed to be a family of four. Your sister seemed to like you quite well, especially when you gave her a large set of play dishes and play food!
Oh how I loved your sweet little legs pulled up to your belly!
This was the very first time we used our new side by side double stroller. We went to the mall, just to get "out" and walk around. The stroller was used constantly for many years after this (and was used as recently as last summer to hold our "stuff" when we were out somewhere!).
When you were two months old we drove to Yosemite, CA. This was the infamous "sleeping in a laundry basket" trip that you've heard about. We could carry you into the tent, or outside in the shade, and you just slept on so cutely! Sometimes your little toes poked through the holes in the sides of the basket. I used to love just watching you!
It was on this trip that you began smiling in earnest.
Your first Halloween we dressed you as a peapod and took you to about 6 neighbors' houses just to show you off. You had no choice whatsoever in the costume! All your siblings were also a peapod for their first Halloween. ;-)
You and big sister played GREAT together. You have many similarities in personality, and have (almost) always gotten along really well. This was the picture we sent out in our Christmas cards that year.
Your first snow!
Daddy was happy to have a son. You were not a huge snuggler, so he loved cuddling with you whenever you were in the mood.
When you turned one, you very seriously examined your little cake and then ate every single bite.
Two weeks later you became a big brother when L was born! It was awfully soon for you to become a big brother, and honestly, you were mostly oblivious to him for the first few months, except when he cried. I loved all three of my babies so much, but parts of your second year are a bit of a blur. I think that's one reason I love looking at pictures of that time so much ~ despite the daily busyness of life, I was pretty good about taking pictures, probably to help me remember later!
When baby L was very little (2 or 3 weeks old) you took your first steps! You were all dressed up for us to go to church as a family of 5 for the very first time, when your sister came running through the house, saying "baby's walking! baby's walking!" And sure enough, you were! Both your grandmas got to see your first steps.
The summer that you were one we got this little pool, that we finally got rid of just last year. Do you remember it? Many happy hours were spent in this pool!
When baby L was sleeping through the night, you two brothers began sharing a room. It was kindof like having twins, because we had two of everything.
A few years later, you still shared a room, but you had both graduated to twin beds!
This is when you were 2, baby L was 1, and big sister G was 4.
Do you remember how badly you wanted the Imaginext pirate boat?? You were SO HAPPY to unwrap that for Christmas! We loved that you loved to build so much. You were constantly building from about age 2 on.
You were a sweet natured boy, and very gentle. Here you are petting a baby porcupine. Porcupines are very soft when they are new, just like little humans! Your smile could melt my heart.
When you were 5, you started kindergarten at home. You loved school, especially math. By this time brother L was doing preschool, and your brother C was 2. He is in the far left of this picture, pouring and measuring dried beans.
During that year, Little Man was born. You were amazed by him, and spent many long moments just like this, gazing at him and talking to him. I love that you are still good friends, and such good room-mates.
Here is one of your fabulous lego creations! After receiving a new lego set, you would build the intended item immediately, and after a couple days you would take it apart and use the pieces to build something new. It was such a fascinating glimpse into your mind!
When you were 7, you began playing soccer. You loved it from the very first moment, and seemed to have a mind for the game. We loved watching you play!
Remember our trip to Williamsburg, VA? You loved learning facts about history, and have always been able to remember an incredible amount of information. And there's our double stroller behind you! If only it could talk.... it has been everywhere.
On the day you turned 8 you got your very own library card. You felt very grown up and it was an exciting moment! It has always intrigued me to see the books you choose at the library. Rarely are they fiction books, but rather non-fiction books about the current thing you are passionate about. Over the years those passions have been trains, airplanes, sailing boats, military equipment, sharks, and currently, roller coasters!
This was your 11th birthday. Remember?
And now you are 13. A teenager!! You have been a delight to us from the very beginning, and we are proud of the young man you are becoming. We love that you love Jesus, and we are excited to see how He will lead you and guide you as you continue to grow into manhood.
Happy, happy birthday to our much loved son!