Dear Denver,

Happy Birthday! What an incredible year this has been. The last six months in particular have flown by, thanks in large part to the arrival of Everett. You have grown into an amazing big brother! You give kisses and hugs, like to make Everett laugh, and are quick on your feet when he needs a pacifier, toy, or diaper change. You love to greet Everett when he wakes from naps, enjoy tickling him, and are eager to demonstrate tummy time and rolling. I love watching your relationship grow, and I continue to pray that you’ll be best friends.

Meeting Ev aka “brah” for the first time

Getting to know each other on Easter morning

Close talking with Ev

You are now a talking machine, with hundreds of words in your repertoire. Your language skills started exploding around 20 months, and the sentences started right before your second birthday. You can now count to 20, recite most of the alphabet, sing several songs, and repeat any words that Dad and I ask you to say. My favorite phrases are “whoa, cool,” “tick toes” (for tickle toes), “Jesus Song,” “kiss face,” and “love, too.”

Cheesing it up at Taco Mamacita

You are quite the story teller, sharing about playdates with family and friends, traveling in cars and planes, getting hurt, and crashing on the floor. It’s amazing to see how your mind works, and which events are memorable to you. Your favorite story is the time you hit your head on the fence, which you retell daily.

Enjoying summer

Mixing colors

Reading is one of your favorite activities, and you have many books memorized. Dad and I start the sentences, and you finish them. You also occasionally pick up books to read to your brother and stuffed animals. Your favorite book seems to be Richard Scarry Best World Book Ever because it has trains and planes and automobiles. The Bug Book is a close second. You pretend to hold and eat the bugs!

Reading Richard Scarry

Music is still the key to your heart, and you’ve picked up a penchant for marching. We march to “Mickey Mouse Club March,” “The Ants Go Marching,” and “We Are the Dinosaurs.” We march around the kitchen, to your bedroom for naps, and around the neighborhood for exercise.

We took this during family photos, and you would not sit still!

One of my favorite developments over the last six months is your love for church and the Bible. When I tell you we’re going to church, you get excited and immediately respond with “see friends.” You also love reading the Bible before bed. You have a children’s Old Testament and New Testament, and you insist that we read a story from each every night. Your favorite stories are David and Goliath, which you’ve named “fight,” and Jonah and the fish. I am so thankful that God is writing His name upon your heart, and I pray that your faith will grow as you continue to learn about His word and especially about His son, Jesus.

Reading the Bible to Everett, with paint or chalk or marker on your arm

Still a bit timid around new experiences, Dad and I took you to get your first hair cut. We let Dad get his hair cut first so that you’d be a bit calmer come your turn, but it didn’t matter. You were not having it, and the pictures are hilarious and pitiful.

We traveled to Virginia Beach to introduce Everett to the extended family, and you were a super traveler, great on the airplanes, and flexible throughout the entire trip! While in Virginia Beach, you enjoyed your first trip to the actual beach! You were wary of the waves, but Dad and Pappy managed to get you to swim a bit. You saw dolphins, seagulls, jets, and boats, and enjoyed eating all sorts of delicious snacks. You also experienced your first Shogun experience, on the trip. We told you in advance about the “big fire,” and you were so excited, until you saw the big fire. Then you were so scared! We all got a big of a laugh at your expense, and we’re hoping you warm up to the idea soon (pun intended).

Walking to beach with Dad

Walking on beach with Pappy

Playing on beach with Mama

Dining at Shogun

Speaking of food, you now have official favorites: pizza, sweet tea, and chocolate chips. You really are a terrific eater, enjoying many fruits and veggies, but you could probably eat Jets Pizza every single day. On your actual second birthday, we took you to the Adventure Science Center in the morning, and we picked up pizza for lunch on the way home. Birthdays should be full of favorites after all. We also threw a big party with the extended family the day before your birthday. It was Llama Llama themed. You loved being the center of attention and opening your new presents, including toy trains, a baseball set, and a car!

Pic with Dad and me on your actual birthday

Happy 2nd birthday, Denver Josiah! I hope you know how much you are loved. You are a bright little buddy, and you fill each day with joy.

Love,

Mama