I can not believe you are three. It seems like just yesterday that I found out I was pregnant with you, which was almost 4 years ago! Your daddy and I picked out your name years before you were born, when we were just dating. We dreamed about what "John Korben" would be like if God ever gave us a son, and I had dreamed of being a mommy since I was a little girl. I am so thankful that God gave you to us. You surpassed all dreams we could have had for what our son would be like. You have completely changed our lives in the best way. We love you with a kind of love we have never felt before, and you have caused us to be closer to God and to each other. You have helped teach me what really matters in this short life.
I feel so privileged to get to spend every day with you. There was a time that I didn't think I was going to get to be a stay at home mom, and God made it possible. I can not imagine if you had spent these past 3 years in a day care. The memories you and I have made together are priceless.
I have no idea how old you will be when you will read this, but I think you may find it interesting at some point in your life what you were like as a brand new 3 year old. So, I'm going to fill you in.
One of the most exciting things I can say is that YOU ARE POTTY TRAINED! At 2.5 you starting going #2 on the potty, and all we have had to work on since is you telling me when you needed to go #1. You made up your mind about a month ago that you were completely ready to be in big boy underwear and you have hardly had an accident since. I'm just so proud of you! It is so nice to not have to buy you pull ups anymore and your big boy underwear are SO cute!
You transitioned to a big boy bed last July and you are still a great sleeper. This is another HUGE thing to a mommy. Knowing that you are potty trained and you can sleep in your own bed so happily makes me feel like we have accomplished two of the greatest tasks parents have to face with a toddler!
Your vocabulary is ridiculous. Even before you could walk, I felt like you could say any word. Now you speak in paragraphs. You wake up talking and you don't stop unless you are asleep. Every thought you have is vocalized and it is very loud! You want to talk to me about everything all day long. You want to be right by my side and ask every question you can think of. You are not that kid that run off to do your own thing, although you have learned a lot more independence since Klaire has arrived. You want to do what we are doing and join in our conversation about it. Most recently, you have watched us as we have watched the horrendous footage of the tsunami in Japan. You have asked questions about it and anytime we see any of the coverage on TV you talk about how sad it is that the people have lost their homes and cars in Japan. You also can articulate what you have learned in Sunday School at church. I loved hearing you tell me about Jonah and the Whale a few weeks ago, and about your lesson on giving. After receiving so many new toys for your birthday, your daddy asked you to pick out three old toys to give to kids who didn't have any toys. Then, you told me yesterday that your sunday school lesson was on giving and reminded me that you gave some of your toys to kids that don't have any toys. I'm so thankful that you were able to comprehend why we had you do that. This makes me so so proud.
Speaking of sunday school, you LOVE to go to church. You go on wednesday nights, sunday mornings and sunday nights. You love all of your teachers and friends. However, I'm not the type of mom that thinks my child can do nothing wrong. Oh no. You get very excited sometimes, and struggle with hitting. Your teachers always tell me that it is rarely in a mean way, it is just an "overly excited, linebacker sort of way." You know it is wrong, and when you give me an account of your time away from me you always give me an honest review of everything you did...the good, the bad, and the ugly. You admit the wrong things you did to us even when you know that there will be consequences. I'm so grateful that you haven't learned to lie yet. I pray you will always be honest with us, and we can keep communication lines open. Hopefully one day you will get the big picture, and realize that we love you no matter what and we discipline you because we love you. At this point, spankings don't seem to have NEAR the affect on you as "taking something away." In fact, the greatest punishment for you is to be sent to your room, away from us. You can not STAND isolation from people, even if you are sent to a room full of toys. I find that so interesting!
Your imagination is so wonderful. You still have Bullskie, your imaginary dog and talk about him all the time. There is not one prayer that you pray that Bullskie isn't prayed for. I would love to get inside your head and see what you are seeing sometime! You love to cook us imaginary food. Our coffee table is your "kitchen", and you could serve us for hours! Its so adorable!
I haven't mentioned how sweet you are yet, but you really are the sweetest boy. You have so much love for others. You love to pray for all of those that you love, and you never seem to leave ANYONE out! You have a really great memory! You learn lyrics and words to books so easily. Your favorite song is "Our God" by Chris Tomlin (you call it "Our God is Greater"). You want to hear it every single time we get in the car, and of course, I always play it for you. The theology is on point, and I want those words to be written on your heart. Hearing you sing the lyrics is the greatest sound on earth. Worship in its purest form. Oh, how wonderful will that day be when you accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior...that will be the greatest decision of your whole life!
Ever since I've had Klaire, I've noticed that you have become a BIG snuggler with me. Anytime I'm not holding her, you take every opportunity to be close to me, and I LOVE IT! You will often ask me while sitting next to me, "Mom, you got lipstick on?" And if I say no, you will just plant the biggest kiss on my lips!"
Speaking of Klaire, you are a wonderful big brother. You usually refer to her as "your" baby most of the time, but sometimes you will call her "our" baby. Ha! I recently told you about a friend of mine that had a baby in her belly and I mentioned the name of the new baby. You said, "I just want OUR baby." You are very possessive of her, but also very proud. You want everyone to see her. You love for your "friends" to get to see her. I love how you say her name. You rarely call her Klaire, she is "Baby Klaire", but you say it so fast, it really sounds more like "BayKlaire." I will be sad one day when she is no longer "Bayklaire." You love to make her smile. She has just now started connecting with us and smiling. I can tell that you are going to be her favorite person in the world soon. How wonderful it will be to see her reciprocate all the love that you have been giving her for months.
I think you are the most handsome boy I've ever seen in my life. Your red hair is still so beautiful, and your blue eyes melt my heart. When you were a baby, your daddy and I did everything but stand on our heads (well, we probably did that too) just to see you smile. Your smile still lights up our life. Anytime I'm away from you for any amount of time, seeing your smile from across the room is the greatest feeling in the world. I'm SO proud you are mine. Hear that, Korben. I'm SO PROUD that I get to call YOU, "MY SON." To say you are special is an understatement. There is NO ONE like you, and your daddy and I will love you unconditionally for the rest of our lives!
Happy 3rd Birthday, sweet boy!
I love you!