lately, it's been hitting me just how quickly time is going by, and how many little, quirky things that ruby does and says that i might (read: definitely will) forget. i have a tERRible memory, and there's also so much of it that i'd challenge anyone to hang onto all of that cuteness in their memory bank. so, since this is the main place that i've chosen to document life and "put it all out there", here goes..
-- you love clothes. like an i-clean-up-clothes-more-than-toys kind of love. you call one piece of clothing a "clo". as in, "mom, can i try on just one more clo before bed?" makes sense to me. the dress-up box that auntie v and kyle gave you for christmas is your current favorite thing to play with, and there is no telling what sorts of amazingly eclectic (and always colorful) outfits i'll see from you throughout the day. you've had your fair share of wardrobe changes over time, so you're super good at getting any and all kinds of clothing on and off without my help. it's kind of nice to let you get ready for the day or for bed all on your own, but i still love dressing you when you'll let me.
-- you're convinced that carrots will make your hair grow (not sure who told you that ;)), so you're always excited to eat them and ask me if i can see it growing.. of course i can!
-- pushing has often been a challenge for you, but you have gotten so so so much better at being more kind and patient, even just recently, and i'm so thankful for that. i will say that getting pushed a time or two recently when we've been out and about has probably contributed to you realizing how bad it feels, and i'm okay with that. we talk a lot about how we should treat others, and it's been neat for me to see your little mind and heart grasping what kindness and gentleness look like.
-- you have an amazing vocabulary, and stellar pronunciation in most areas, but you still call strawberries "traw-trawberries". i never correct you.
-- you can be very rough and tumble at times, but you are also insanely affectionate and compassionate. if ever i tell you that someone in our family or one of your friends is sick, you make this super sad face and tell me that we need to tell them, "i'll be ok". you're always giving kisses and you're very quick to tell me that you love me.
-- you're a great mix of friendly and cautious when it comes to strangers. you ask any and everyone that we see in our apartment building what their name is, and bring a smile to so many faces because of it, but you won't hug or even give a high five to just anyone. we try and instill in you that you have a choice about who touches you, and i'm thankful that, even at two and a half, your affection is intentional because it's something you choose to give.
-- you're already so funny and witty, and often surprise me with jokes you make and things you realize will make people laugh. you and i belly laughed the other night because i was commenting on how messy your room was before bed, and right at that moment you threw a card that you had in your hand onto a pile of dress-up clothes and burst out laughing. somehow you knew that adding to the mess at just that moment was funny, and it had us both in stitches.
-- you make up silly songs all the time, and i always love listening to you when you don't know that i am while you sing about random things around you. i'm hoping that's leading into you being musical, because i would love that.
-- without any encouragement to do so, you love princesses and all things girly. you can spot a picture of snow white from a mile away, and you love hearing any princess story i can think of. you're really good at telling them yourself, and it's always hilarious to see how you intermix characters into stories that they don't belong in. it was so fun to take you to meet the princesses while we were in disney world, and i count it a blessing that we could go there.. i'm thankful it's something we'll be able to tell you about and show you pictures from when you're older.
-- you love your daddy so much. we both get so excited and do silly dances whenever he calls to tell us he's on his way home, and you'll randomly say things like, "my daddy is so strong" and "aw, daddy is so sweet". it brings tears to my eyes when i hear him singing to you or reading you a book at night, and i'm still thankful for the ways that seeing him as your daddy, and you as his little girl, are redeeming things in me of what i think of as a father.
-- you blow my mind with your knowledge of technology. you can unlock and navigate pretty much any kind of smart phone that someone might let you hold. so much so, that you think people you're talking to on my "dumb phone" should be able to see whatever you're talking to them about, so you hold the phone up to it and tell them to "look". you also think all screens are touch screens, and have gotten into trouble a time or two for trying to push "buttons" on our tv.
-- you love babies and could ooh and ahh over them for ages. you talk constantly about having a baby sister named olivia, and trust me, daddy and i are doing all we can to make you a big sister. i know you'll be such a great one.
-- you've recently been more willing to cuddle in bed with me after you first wake up and come into our room in the morning. you'll lie there for quite awhile with your forehead to mine, rubbing your hand on my arm or against my face. it's become one of my favorite parts of the day.
-- you really, really love reading books, and while daddy or i read to you before nap or bed is probably when you're the calmest and quietest all day. lately you like to "read" a book to us after we read it to you, and i'm always amazed at how much of it you can recall back to us.
-- you always want to help me cook and clean, and you're constantly helping me learn more patience as i slow down and let you do more things with me. they're sometimes hard lessons, but i'm so thankful for how much i learn from, and because of, you.
ruby girl, i know that you are by no means a perfect little girl.
you need training and discipline much more often than i envisioned
a child needing, but i am so thankful to be your mama.
you light up a lot of lives, and God did something very kind
when he gave you to me and your daddy..
and that's something i never want to forget. <3