How can it be that my baby boy is three? It doesn't seem like it's been that long since I first held you in my arms after a beautiful, peaceful, fast birth at home.
My sweet boy, I don't know if it's your personality, the fact that you've been the baby of the family for over a year longer than anyone else, or a combination of both, but you are the snuggliest three year-old I've had so far. You love your mama--and your mama loves you too. And if you can't manage to situate yourself on my lap, daddy's lap will usually do.
You talk a mile and a half a minute, amazing family and strangers alike with your vocabulary. In fact, when we went to the pediatrician for your check-up this fall, they asked if you could speak in full sentences yet. As we pulled into the parking lot that morning, I counted an 18 word sentence. Ha!
You have really grown up a lot in recent months, between your speech and your growing ability to hold your own when you play with Katie and Benjamin. You've also begun learning how to be more helpful around the house. You mainly help with picking up your toys, and truthfully you are often reluctant to do so--but we're working on that. You have pretty strong opinions and are fairly hard to convince when you have your mind set, much like your older sister.
You also definitely think you have swag, as daddy would say. You act like you're 3 going on 19. This frequently cracks us all up--and every once in a while is just a wee bit annoying. But that's alright. We all have quirks, and this is one we love about you. You don't lack confidence despite being the youngest of the 'big kids.'
You are all boy, my Joshua. You love planes, trains, cars, guns, and superheroes. If it has wheels or is otherwise manly, you are all into it. You're also pretty tough. I'm amazed at the tumbles and bumps you take without crying. Your daddy appreciates this about you!
Just over a week after your birthday, you met your new baby sister for the first time. It has been precious watching you become an older brother. You adore Josephine and are so sweet to her! Between you and Benjamin (and daddy!) she will be so well protected and taken care of. Despite how much you love your sister, adjusting to mommy having a new person to focus on has been challenging for you. You're coming along, though.
I am excited to see what providence has in store for you, my son. You're a smart, funny, strong, and sweet boy. More than anything else, I long for you to submit to Christ and honor Him with all your days. In the end, nothing else matters much.
I sure do love you, Joshua Gianavel. You make my world sweeter by being in it.
Happiest of birthdays to you!
PS: I hope when I write you a letter next year, I can say you've successfully potty trained.