Let’s Be Butterflies.

Some days there is nothing more frustrating than an almost three year old. Some days she doesn’t stop talking. Some days she doesn’t stop needing. Some days she doesn’t stop whining. Some days she doesn’t even pretend to listen. Some days she must do everything for herself. Some days she runs the complete gamut of emotions in 20 minutes leaving us both drained.

But then some days she straps on her little, pink wings and innocently asks, “you wanna be a butterfwy with me, mommy?”

And I melt. And run around the basement/yard/house flapping my arms in the air chasing the most giggly butterfwy God ever created.

Aside from everything else, the innocence of this age is magic. The imagination is something to behold. And no matter how the day before unfolded, I am always excited to see what Leah has in store for me each day. She is something special, my bug. And I don’t talk about her enough. I really should shout from the rooftops every day how grateful I am for everything that she is – but the neighbors might call the cops. But sometimes I want to anyways. Her three-year-oldness can wear me down like nothing else, and the lows with her can be really low. But the highs… the highs are enough to want 12 of her.

I feel bad because I take a million pictures of Quinn (just like I did Leah at this age), and I rarely have a new picture of Leah. But then I don’t feel so bad, because I politely ask if she will smile for me so I can take a picture, and she does this:

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πŸ™‚

There was a time when she was easy. And it wasn’t too long ago. But at the same time, I admire her fighting spirit. I want her to have it, I’ve told you that. I want her to know what she wants and what she doesn’t – and I want her to know that she can voice those things. And boy, does she. What a booger.

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She can say no, but for now I’m still smarter – so I can trick her πŸ™‚

We have made it through the depths of winter. And now Leah is living for the days we can be outside all day. Thank goodness there have been some – and here’s to many more! She loves to be outside, to be active, and to just run. I’ve never seen anything like it. Kyle and I ask ourselves often, “do other parents have to run laps around their house with their kids every night after dinner?” Because we do. I kid you not. I get a 10 minute run every single day – and I’m the one that stops at 10 minutes – she could go for days. She most certainly did not get that from me. She is a born athlete. And because of that we have re-enrolled in gymnastics and added outdoor soccer. I run out of ideas (and energy) trying to think of how to keep her moving. There was a time I would have judged a parent who had their kid in a million activities, but not anymore. Now I understand that some kids just have to move… all the time. Leah is one of them, God love her.

But on the opposite end of the spectrum – we are now forcing her to watch movies. Does that make us bad parents? You see, we are going to Disney World later this year, and in order for the ridiculous amount of $$$ to be worth it – she needs to know someone other than Winnie the Pooh. So her Nana has gotten her quite the collection of Disney’s finest started – and we have added regular family movie nights to our routine. Monsters Inc, Little Mermaid, and Frozen are so far the favorites. Cinderella and Toy Story were a bit of a bust. She is so excited for this Disney trip, though, and to see all of these characters up close. Having breakfast with Pooh, Tigger, and Piglet might just kill us both. A lot of the time I don’t know who’s more excited between the two of us. (Please feel free to message me if you’d like to know where to make donations). πŸ™‚

In LeahLand, Daddy is the name of the game. Anything he does, she does. Anything he says, she says. Anywhere he goes, she goes. She wants to play hockey, baseball, and golf because of him. GOLF. That’s when you know it’s bad.

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He is her gold. On weekdays, the first thing out of her mouth in the morning is, “where’s daddy.” Then I say, “daddy went to work.” Then she says, “daddy be back soon.” As if to reassure herself that he won’t be gone long. My favorite (or maybe it should be least favorite) thing about their relationship, however, is the daddy drinks. You know, beer. I will say now, Kyle is not an alcoholic. But he and Leah have a tradition of going to the grocery store on Thursday nights (when beer is on sale) and getting daddy drinks. Let the record show, this is about the only time he goes to the grocery store. Last night we happened to be there as a family and we started with first things first – the free cookies. After Leah got her cookie, she declares to the rest of the store, “alright, let’s go get daddy’s beer!” I whipped my head around to glare at him for starting this little tradition of cookies and beer only to find him cracking up. She had the routine memorized. God bless. You can imagine my shame. Don’t worry, he also does non-alcohol related activities with her.

I will end with my favorite of her Leah-isms these days.

6 o’clock. She loves to play doctor, and everytime we take a temperature – it’s 6 o’clock. I don’t know if your fever has ever reached 6 o’clock – but it requires immediate attention.

ABCs. This child is obsessed with letters, and now that she knows the song – that’s all she sings. Only last week she added a new dimension. To sing it woud. Every time we’re in the car, we’re singing the ABCs. And now she says, “wanna sing it woud, mommy?!” “Wanna sing it wouder?!” So we belt the ABCs as we drive down the road. Quinn doesn’t know what’s happening.

A couple years. She has 0 concept of time. For instance, we are going to Disney World tomorrow. My favorite, though, is when she says, “in a couple years.” “Leah, you ready to go to the store?” “Not yet, mommy, in a couple years.” She also loves, a couple minutes, a couple weeks, and a couple days.

Jesus. Yesterday, when asking her what she did at church, she non-nonchalantly says, “we learned about Jesus again.” Ha. No kidding, kid.

What everybody. Before I tell you, can you guess what that might mean if you’re three? What everybody. WHO! As in, what body – who. I think it’s rather clever, and it goes something like this, “what everybody made that mess?”

I love you, Quinn. This one isn’t funny, but it makes me melt. This morning she was holding Quinn on the couch and I was walking by and I hear in the softest voice, I love you, Quinn, followed by a kiss. I went a little weak in the knees. She loves her little sister so much.

She’s a lot of kid, this Leah of ours. But she is everything good. And I’m her biggest fan.

Even on the bad days.

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