Today you turn four years old. To see it seems impossible to believe would be an understatement. We felt like we waited forever for you. And now you are four.
Daddy and I love you so much our hearts swell up when we think of you or talk of you. I often forget that you did not grow in my belly. You are such a part of my heart, I can't imagine you not being in my life for even one moment.
Here is a look back at your first four years on this Earth. (You can click on the photo to jump to a post telling what you were doing on that birthday.)
We love you sweet boy,
Daddy & Mommy
You were born on May 7, 2008 at Broward General Hospital in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Your Daddy and I drove as fast as we could to make it the ten hours from Eglin AFB to Fort Lauderdale, and we were able to hold you for the first time on May 8, 2008 at around 2:30am. You shared a birthday with your birthmother Bri. She turned 18 and you made an entrance to the world. I find the fire alarm in the background of this picture funny now, since you are currently obsessed with them and all things having to do with emergencies.
We spent the next year getting to know you, hug you, kiss you, and love you while standing in complete awe that we had been chosen to be your parents. When you were almost nine months old, we welcomed your little brother Elijah into the world. You were unphased. You continued to be one of the most easy going, chill, compliant, patient, sweet children we (and all of our friends) had ever met. Here you are with Daddy at your first birthday party trying some cake for the first time.
And here you are celebrating your second birthday with your birthmom Bri. She was turning 20. You were turning two. You loved your brother "Sidja" and were talking up a storm already. We had a Curious George party at a park near Eglin AFB. This was a bitter sweet time as we were months away from moving halfway across the world from all those we knew and loved.
Birthday number three was celebrated here in Turkey, nearly one year after we arrived. We had Mickey Mouse party and invited all the wonderful people we had met during our first year in Turkey.
Here are some highlights of your life as a now four year old.
- You love dandelions. You can spot one dandelion in a field of weeds and pull your bike over to give it a good blow.
- You are an incredible brother to your little sister Abigail. You are incredibly loving and gentle and patient with her nearly all of the time.
- You are definitely the "big" brother with your brother Elijah. You run the show. You guys love to play together. You fight but not an extraordinary amount.
- You have always been and still are a Daddy's boy. You prefer Dad when you get hurt although in the last year, I have moved up on the ladder a bit.
- You are wearing a size 10 shoe, size 3T pants, and size 3T or 4T shirts. We are guessing you will be about 5-10" to 6' tall someday. Your feet seem big!
- Your vocabularly is basically limitless. You say some funny things as you are still working out the nuances of the English language, but your English is close to perfect.
- You know all your colors in Turkish. You also use dondurma (ice cream), meerhaba (hello), kolay gelsin (may it be well with you), and thank you in Turkish.
- You continue to be incredibly observant. (Ex. You pointed out the other day that my watch matched our friend Christina's watch.)
- You remember everything I say. If I tell you we are going to do something, you will not let me forget it.
- You currently don't really have a concept of time or numbers, but you are starting to become more interested, asking me what time it is or how long you have to wait, etc.
- You are very interested in: cars, electricity, fire extinguishers, ice cream, and books. But your matchbox cars seem to be your very favorite. You can play with cars all day long.
- You ride your three-wheeler bike incredibly well. You can weave between poles and do some other really snazzy stuff (like ride along the curb but not fall off.)
- You love your "stuff" (what you sleep with.) You currently sleep with blue bear, small doggie (a dalmatian from Bri and Joni you've had since birth), big doggie (a dalmation we bought to back-up small doggie in case something happened to him but you then inadvertently also claimed), your brown bear (which Bri had when she was little), your whale shark (a gift from Bri), an elephant (a gift from Bri's friend Robert), and a brown dog holding a heart (which I got from the thrift store). You currently sleep with a red blanket made by Joni's friend Renee. It has dalmatians on it. Your stuff is quite important to you.
- You are very particular. (Ex. When we got your blue soft blanket made larger, you refused to sleep with it anymore.) You know what you want, and you are not afraid to stick to it.
- You are in charge of what you wear. You have a rotation of about six shirts that are currently acceptable. You'd like to wear jeans everyday but you compromise with jean shorts although you tell me, "I want them to be longer."
- You can put on your own sandals; you can put on your own underwear and pants; you can't put your shirt on yet; you can take all your clothes off by yourself. But getting you to put them on can sometimes, depending ont he mood you are in, cause you great tears and whining. You'd really prefer Mom just did it.
- You like to "sit under the drain" every time you are in the bathtub. As soon as you think it is bath time, you "call" it so that Elijah can't have it.
- You still like to "put stuff by the door" when you go to bed or nap. This means it is waiting for you when you get up. It "protects" it for you from your brother or sister.
- You are really not napping anymore at all. You rest for at least 90 minutes every afternoon, but you very rarely sleep. You usually sleep the longest in the mornings though ... getting up lately between 7:30 and 8:30am.
- You go to bed between 7-8pm and like to read yourself to sleep. You put the books away yourself when you are tired and ready to lay down. You love your Richard Scarry books at night in bed by yourself.
- You are starting to be able to draw circles and smiley faces. You added a line to the letter T the other day and said, "Look, I made an I."
- You are a very picky eater. What you like one day, you may not like the next. You like almost all fruits and you will always eat PB&J but after that, who knows what you will eat or not.
- You love chocolate milk, white milk, and an occasional juice or water.
- You are still on the shy side with adults but not usually ever with kids.