Growing Up

Wesley is growing up very very fast, which is also the speed at which he likes to drive, run, be carried, swim, fly, boat, etc. (Although physically he's stopped growing a half-inch a month and hasn't gotten taller for the past couple of months at all). Wesley can do pretty much everything in the house on his own. He's never been allowed to play with the DVD player (or watch TV), but if you turn your back, he'll go open it, stick in a Mozart CD and start it playing. Wesley's favorite song continues to be Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and he asks for that and Baa Baa Black Sheep to be sung to him every night and nap time. He often sings a medly that runs through those and ABCDEFG, and several other songs (Frere Jacques, Old MacDonald, She'll Be Coming Around the Mountain, etc.). Often he rewrites the words. He recently asked a violinist on the Downtown Mall to play Twinkle Twinkle. The more Wesley sings, the better the songs get.

Interview with Wesley

More Singing

Swansons in Milwaukee

Swansons in Milwaukee

Fast

We got a trailer for Wesley to ride in that attaches to the back of my bicycle. From behind me I hear the expected requests from Wes: "Fast, Daddy!" and "Very Fast, Daddy!" One time, and one time only, Wesley said "Not Fast, Daddy." I realized he's never bothered to learn the word "Slow."

Wesley's Gram and Gramps and Unle Matt visited for the weekend and he had a ton of fun with them.

That's My Mommy!

Well, Wes says Nammy or Nanny, but he means Mommy. And according to his Mommy, as they were leaving a park this morning and she was walking ahead of him, and a woman waved at Wesley, he pointed ahead to his Mommy and told her "That's my Mommy!" and grinned his big grin. His Mommy liked that.

Now I Know My ABCs

Wesley Plays Twinkle

Wesley Spinning

Wesley's Back Yard

Wesley's backyard has a deck and back of the house and garage that need painting, which we'll get to soon. There's grass that Daddy cuts and Wes pretends to mow. There are bushes that Wesley helps water from the rain barrel with an elephant watering can. There are flowers Wesley picks for Mommy -- yesterday it was buttercups from the alleyway. There's a vegetable garden that we need to start up again very soon. There's a hammock that Wesley loves swinging in with Daddy. As with swings at parks, Wesley's favorite request is "Fast!" There's also a plastic swing for Wes hanging from an apple tree. There's a dogwood tree with wind chimes. There's a bird feeder that is quite popular. And then there are Wesley's three plastic slides and one little plastic house. And of course "Ca" the little black cat who's never more than a few feet away from Wesley.

Wesley's Mommy

Wesley is still almost always happy, even having become a two-year-old with opinions and preferences and demands for control over his life. Why? Because he has the best Mommy in the world teaching him and playing with him all the time. Anna knows how to figure out what Wesley is thinking, what he needs, and lead him into activities that suit him. He really won the Mommy lottery. He does tire her out once in a while, but he has a LOT of energy. Wesley and Mommy have a great time playing hide-and-seek, but also making up random games. Right now they are hiding the lid to a bottle in the backyard and finding it. Now they're tossing maple seed helicopters in the air. "Ca" is in between them.

Wesley's Driving

Wesley asks a lot to drive the car. I let him drive in my lap in the driveway, steering as we go forward and back. He only has 14 years to wait! Poor kid! But he has a tricycle he loves, and he now has a tractor too - both of them are from his cousins. He pushes like Fred Flintstone because his legs are still a little short for pedaling. Maybe we'll add some blocks to the tractor pedals. Or we could wait a month. Wesley grows over a half inch every month, as measured on a chart on the wall of his room. He'd grown over 2 inches from December 15th to April 15th. We'll make another mark on May 15th, and I suspect he's picking up speed! Wesley may grow up to be an enthusiastic driver, or musician, or athlete, or singer, or storyteller, or painter, it's a little hard to say.

Wesley's Bloggers

Wesley's Mommy, Grandparents, Aunt, Uncles, and Cousins are encouraged to blog here!

Wesley's Birthday Bash(es)

Wesley had a number of second birthday parties stretching over a month or so, including one with some of his little Cville friends and their parents, one with his grandparents, one with his parents, and one with his grandparents', aunt, uncles, and cousins. That was the most recent one: last Saturday in Charlottesville. Everybody came to visit, and we went to the Dogwood Festival Parade. We watched the first dozen parade entries go by, and then when the Charlottesville Center for Peace and Justice came marching with flags and banners and the UVA Pep Band playing, we all joined in. I gave Wesley a ride on my shoulders, which we call a piggyback ride. Travis rode in a wagon. Hallie marched and quickly learned to wave a peace sign. The crowd cheered. We were stars. We stepped out of the parade again when we got to McGuffy Park and played there and brought over three big pizzas from Christian's Pizza. Then we went to Splendora's gelateria. Later we went home and it poured rain on the way and we hid under a roof for a while. Then there was a full double rainbow.

Wesley's Schools

We've looked at a number of preschools and elementary schools. We want to support public schools but are not sure we want to inflict one on Wesley if it's not a good place for him to learn and play in. We like Northbranch school, which is a very progressive hippyish preschool through middle schoool, but it's a long drive. Wesley would learn about economic sustainability while burning up gasoline by the bathtubful to get there. We like a Methodist preschool downtown, except for it being Methodist, but it sounds uncertain whether we can get through the witing list to get in. We really like Chancellor Street preschool, which is also in town and right across the street from UVA, from the Rotunda and from the Chapel where we got married. We know the first day to apply and think there's a good chance of getting in if we apply then. Today we're going to go look at Free Union School, which is 10 miles from town, and to which we might send Wesley starting in Kindergarten, after Chancellor Street. Chancellor Street Preschool is a co-op, so we'd have to help out, but we'd get to know the other families and save money. I don't know how much Free Union costs.

Wesley's Words

Phrases and sentences are common now, whether repeating after us or inventing out of the blue. Anna said recently that she and Wesley were at Northeast Park, and Wesley began singing (to the tune of "Twinkle Twinkle" of course) "Mommy ride the Toucan, Wesley ride the horse, Mommy ride the Toucan..." which pretty well informed Mommy what Wesley wanted to go over and do.

Daddy's Lawn Mower

I'm a hero because I push a lawn mower around. Wesley pushes his around at the same time - a toy lawn mower that his cousins Hallie and Travis gave him. Wesley still loves to be outside more than anything, and all types of noisy vehicles! He also loves climbing. Yesterday we took him to Tonsler Park which has a huge wooden fortress playground with lots of tunnels and stairs and slides. Then we ate lunch on the roof of the train station (in a restaurant) and watched the cars and trucks and trains. Nothing better!

Wesley's Music

Wesley sings the full lyrics of "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" by himself ALL the time. He loves this song. He has various recordings of it and a book about it. Most of the time if we put on a CD or the radio, or even if we don't, Wesley says "Gum CD," which means "Play the CD that Gum made me." If we do, he says "Twinkle Twinkle." When that song ends, he says "Twinkle Twinkle" again. He knows parts of a few other songs, but mostly he likes to just make up new words to "Twinkle Twinkle," which usually involves repeating the same one word for the whole song, such as "Mommy mommy mommy mom...."

Wesley's Attack Cat

The neighbors' little black cat has been coming around whenever Wesley is outside ever since Wesley was a baby and the cat was a kitten. We call the cat "Ca." Wesley named her. She got in a big fight with Riley yesterday when Riley escaped. Today she attacked our friend's dog as they were walking by. She was right next to Wesley prior to both fights. She's right next to him now. We think she's protecting him.

Mommy and Wesley (Wes Turns Two 12)

Mommy and Wesley (Wes Turns Two 12)

Daddy and Wesley (Wes Turns Two 9)

Daddy and Wesley (Wes Turns Two 9)

Twinkle Twinkle (Wes Turns Two 4)

Twinkle Twinkle (Wes Turns Two 4)

You're Two

Dear Wesley,

You're two today and you're napping. If you're dreaming, they're probably happy dreams. You're almost always happy awake. Whatever your worst dreams are, they're probably not worse than what I fear may become of this world and your future in it. You've spent your first two years and the nine months before that in a loving family in a beautiful town in a very wealthy country that has shared a little of that wealth with us, though not with everyone.

Wesley and Friends Hunt for Eggs in the Back Yard

Wesley's early second birthday party Easter egg hunt on March 20, 2008:

Watch this video.

Wesley Laughter

Wesley doesn't laugh just if you fake-laugh at him anymore. There has to be a reason to laugh. But there seems to be one quite often. And one can easily be created by doing anything silly or picking Wesley up and turning him upside down, or standing on one foot in imitation of a clown statue as Wesley's mommy showed him how to do this evening.

23 Months!

23 Months!

Wes at 22 Months

Wesley is much more energetic and active these days. He loves to move his body, spinning until he falls down, doing somersaults with assistance, crawling, scooting, kicking, splashing, climbing, dancing to music, and sliding. He’s been very focused on throwing and has been practicing that skill non-stop. He walks up and down stairs now holding our hands. He tries to jump, but his feet haven’t left the ground, yet.

New Wesley Skills

Wesley can now dribble a soccer ball! He can also twirl a fork in pasta and eat it like a pro!

Wesley Always Learns More Than He Shows You

Wesley is growing up. His eyes are turning greener (less baby blue). And he's learning an incredible amount. When he was littler he took a few swimming lessons and went to the pool sometimes in the summer. We also took him to an indoor pool last weekend, and he loved it. And he did something he'd been shown and asked to do but never really done: kicked! So we tried to also show him how to put his mouth in and blow bubbles, but he wouldn't do it. Then tonight in the bathtub, he rolled over on his stomach and started kicking, and stuck his mouth in the water and blew bubbles. Nobody had asked him to or mentioned the idea since last weekend, as far as I know. He did also take a bath at his Gum and Gup's house yesterday, and they have a tub like a small swimming pool.

Wesley the Worker

Wesley loves nothing more than helping and imitating activities that his Mommy and Daddy think of as chores. He likes to go grocery shopping and help put things into the cart and then onto the counter.

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