At this moment, I hear you calling me from upstairs where you should still be sleeping. I'm pretending that somehow writing this letter makes up for sending your Daddy up to you so I can finish my post Sing-It-Yourself Messiah eggnog. This is the difference between life as an infant and life as a toddler. I wouldn't have done that even 10 months ago. I would have been up the stairs in a flash. Now your Daddy and I trade stink-eyes until one of us gets up. Not that we don't love you - we are just greedy for every moment of solitude. You have a toddler's energy and we are getting old. Also, Mommy likes to use the bathroom all by her lonesome. Weird, I know!
I can't believe you are almost two. And at the same time, I certainly can believe it. You are talking up a storm - though sometimes I don't understand you no matter how many times you repeat it. You can form three and four word sentences - especially imperative sentences. You are still the director of your world, at least as much as the pain-in-the-butt adults will allow you to be. You want to do everything yourself (woe betide the person who doesn't let you buckle your seatbelt or jump off the curb in the parking lot!) and you love to help - especially getting mail and doing the laundry. Folding and unfolding - one and the same thing for Tai!
We just got back from a trip to San Diego and the desert. You got to visit your Pawpaw, Des, and your Daddy's grandpa, Pop in San Diego. You impressed them with your ability to entertain yourself for at least twenty minutes just going out the dog door and letting yourself back in the back door. You visited with your Uncle Q and your Granddad in the desert. You're starting to have a preference for hanging out with other guys... when you had a choice of playing with Grandma or Granddad, you picked Granddad. (Which prompted your Daddy and I to wonder how we ended up with such a man's man.) You spent a lot of time improving your kicking abilities, and started to learn how to hold a golf club. You take after your Mommy - you're quite the water baby! Even though it wasn't above 50 degrees on our last day down south, you still wanted to swim.
It's almost Christmas and we've started decorating the house. You love your model train that runs around our tree, and you know what snow men look like (even if it's fortunately far to warm to make a real one). You sat on Santa's lap for the first time and we managed to get a good photo before you decided that sitting on strange guys laps is not for you. I can't wait to share the magic of this season with you. It's one of my favorites, and it's going to be even better now that I can make it magic for someone else, too.
I can't even count how many words you say. You still say 'oleoleo' for cereal. You say 'Da-dad' for Granddad, 'bahbin' for mountain, 'Howmeen' for Halloween, 'disniss' for Christmas, 'ay-oh' for radio, 'Peber' for Peter, 'nineese' for Chinese (as in food). You still call Grandma 'Bah'. You still love to order the dogs around. Cocoa is 'Doh-doh'.
Even if I listed everything you can do (climb up the climbing-web on the playground), everything you love (balls, trucks, drawing, playing piano), everything you can say ('Dad-dad, sit down floor please), it still wouldn't encompass why I love you. I love the way you say 'please' and 'thank you' for everything. I love the way you say 'You, Tai' and crack up after I sing the 'I love you a bushel and a peck' song. I love your laugh. I love the scrunchy face you make now when I tell you to smile for a picture. I love how much you love experiencing the world.
Tonight I was at the Mission Dolores Basilica with Bah, singing the Messiah and at intermission we went to see Mary's shrine. Standing there in front of her I offered my thanks again - that I was lucky enough to be blessed with you.
Love you times a million,