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Dear Colton,

Now you are three! The past three years have been a wonderful adventure watching you grow, seeing your personality develop, and learning to parent you. You have brought so much joy to our lives!

IMG_0085If I had to describe you in a few words, they’d be: fun-loving, sweet, stubborn, silly and energetic. You love to laugh and make others laugh too. Your teachers said you would never sit in your seat during lunch time because you were too busy trying to entertain your friends. I could never drop you off at school or church without giving you a hug and a kiss, and you had to give me one too. Some of my favorite moments with you this year came right before nap-time. I would always say some variation of “I love you! You’re my sweet/special boy!” before turning out your light, and you would say, “no Mommy, you’re my sweet girl!”

Colton gave me a heart necklace for Christmas that says "I Love Mommy." His Daddy took him to pick it out, but he chose the heart and told him what he wanted engraved on it. He was so excited and proud to give it to me. Sweet boy!

Colton gave me a heart necklace for Christmas that says “I Love Mommy.” His Daddy took him to pick it out, but he chose the heart and told him what he wanted engraved on it. He was so excited and proud to give it to me. Sweet boy!

Your zest for life is contagious and overflowing. If you are awake, you like to be playing, exploring, or running. Never before have I seen so much joy in looking for worms, jumping off a tree stump, collecting interesting sticks and rocks, or just simply running down the road.

DSC02101This past year you have especially enjoyed learning about machines and dinosaurs, thanks in large part to the TV shows Mighty Machines and Dinosaur Train. You know so much more about machines than I do! I am forever getting a bulldozer and front loader mixed up, and you are quick to correct me. Not only do you know what they look like, but you also know the different jobs they do, which forever amazes me. I loved seeing you expand your play with trains as you started to play Dinosaur Train with them, and Night and Morning Train, loosely derived from the show. You identified with one of the characters, Don Pteranodon (who is so your dinosaur equivalent), and love pretending to be him, make his signature noise, and sleep in a nest. Thanks to you, I now make a mean Pterandodn squawk!IMG_0291

You recently listed the things you like for me. They are: machines, cars, trains, trucks, planes, helicopters, puppies, kitties, doggies, horses, porcupines, ducklings, dolphins, and probably more. I was trying so hard not to laugh when you got to porcupines that I had a hard time listening to the rest of the things you like.

DSC02140Just before you turned three you became a big brother. I was worried about how you would initially do with this transition, but you have surprised me with how much you love your brother. Of course, you have had your moments of learning how to be gentle, but it is so sweet to see you try to get him to take his paci to calm down or bring him toys to “play” with.

I love you buddy, and can’t wait to see what the next year brings us.

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Back in November, I went to Richmond to hang out with Sarah, Caroline, and their sister-in-law, Theresa. Colton and Joseph were along for the ride! Now, Colton first “met” Joseph back when he was two months old, but Joseph was a whopping four months old, and could do amazing things like hold his head up and sit propped upright. All Colton could do was eat, spit up and poop all over his clothes. Then, Colton and Joseph were together again in May, but Colton wasn’t walking yet.

This time, the playing field was even. Colton never spends time with boys his age (everyone I know, go to church with AND Bible Study with has girls Colton’s age. No boys.). Now, Colton loves hairbows and can play baby dolls with the best of them, but that testosterone has given him an innate love for rocks, trucks and tractors. I was super excited for him to play with Joseph and find a kindred spirit in all things boys love. Instead, I found a study in all the ways Colton and Joseph are complete opposites.

Joseph wanted to feed Colton "crackers" (Chex), which was really, really cute. And sweet.

Except Colton wanted nothing to do with Joseph's sweetness. He's covering his mouth with his hand so Joseph has no chance of sneaking that cracker in.

But then! A beautiful moment when Sarah busted out her child-hood doctor's kit.

Dr. Joseph checked out Colton's throat and gave him a clean bill of health.

Sarah also had a great train set. Joseph was about building the tracks.

He also was great at putting the trains together (they were hook and eye attachments, and not very easy to put together). Colton thought, "hmm...I don't think you're going this right Joseph."

"Here Joseph, let me sit in your lap and show you. These work much better as projectiles!"

Colton and Joseph were both in agreement that our fun birdseed craft was icky...

...but Colton grew to like it and the patting it required.

Joseph decided cake balls were more his style.

The boys were both crazy about pushing this bucket of flour all over the house.

They both also thought running through this net was awesome!

Until Colton tripped and fell and stayed down saying "Fall. Fall. Faaaall," until we all properly ackowledged his fall. Joseph just looked at him like, "what on earth are you doing kid?" My son the drama queen.

Still, they agreed this truck was fun, and that the steering wheels needed to spin!

Still, I think they had a great time together. The jury’s still out as to whether or not Joseph likes me, and since I attempted to wipe his nose, I think it’s leaning more towards not. I had an awesome time with the girls (Theresa is especially hysterical) and can’t wait to get together with them (and their babies!) again soon!

…to your wife, who already thinks you’re pretty crazy.

“But if we ever try to have a third kid, and we had triplets, then we would have five kids! And where would we put them!?”

Just a 20-something girl living on the East Coast, trying to figure out life. I'm a wife and mom to two. I'm trying to rediscover my love for long walks, yoga and pilates. But not hiking. I still don't like hills. I was raised at the beach, but I don't like the beach. I like to look at it, but I don't like to swim in it, I'd prefer a pool, thanks. I'm just trying to become the best person I can be -- the woman God wants me to be. That's easier said than done!

E-mail Me!

Contact me at longbrakeliving@gmail.com - I'd love to hear from you!

Hubby is my all-time favorite guy. A perfect mix of serious, sarcastic, laid-back, handy and nerdy, he is the perfect complement to me. I love his strong work-ethic and the way he always loves and supports me through everything. Some of Hubby's favorite things include: hiking, Virginia Tech football, woodworking, and his family. When I married him in July 2007, I had no idea what an amazing journey we were headed on, and how I could come to love him so much more each day.

Our oldest, Colton, is three years old. He is equal parts sassy and hysterical. He loves all things train, car, bus, truck, and machine related. He has a penchant for made-up words and loves to be the clown of his pre-school class. Our younger son, Nathan, was born this May. He is pure joy and full of smiles! He is such a blessing and a perfect fit for our family.