NEVER!!!

Dear Charlie,

You are on the fast track to 3 years old and in many ways I think you’re already there. I can’t get over how smart you are, which is becoming increasingly evident as you get more and more clear with your words/talking. In terms of personality, I think you’re more Stoddard than Pacheco– strong-willed (stubborn as an ox really, haha), impulsive, a natural leader and problem-solver, but still incredibly sweet and caring… and really quite charming. You love your brother and playing with him is your favorite thing, but you’re also not afraid to stand up for yourself. You take no shit from anyone. šŸ˜‰ As far as stereotypes go, you’re doing a pretty good job of fulfilling those of being left-handed + red headed + the middle child.

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Your favorite things are still sports, cars and animals. You’ve become very attached to a little gray stuffed kitten that you’ve cleverly named “Cat.” Cat goes just about everywhere with you.

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You’re also starting to get into legos and drawing, I think because Alex is so into those things. This summer you’ve also developed a love for the water– you fearlessly jump in and swim in a pool whenever you get the chance (with the floatie on, of course, but I think swim lessons will need to be in your near future). I’m glad I only worked part-time this summer so that I could spend more time with you guys…. but if I’m being honest, you’re the reason I ultimately decided to go back to full-time. I wouldn’t say that you’re a bad kid, but you’re so inquisitive & fearless that I can’t take my eyes off you for a second or you’re into something messy, dangerous, or otherwise inappropriate. My strategy for this has been to just involve you in whatever I’m doing, which luckily you usually are happy to do — my big helper! — but Mommy really needed the mental & physical break I get when you’re at preschool.

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Speaking of preschool, you are doing so well with it! There were some tears in the beginning but you rallied quickly, and now you run into class without so much as a goodbye or backwards glance. It’s been a great outlet for your energy and creativity, and you’re learning tons. I’m so incredibly proud of you!

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Another thing you’ve been making leaps and bounds with lately is potty training. We’ve had to take a step back with it since school started because they require you to be in a pull-up (and you take that opportunity to just go in the diaper :-\ ), but when you’re home in undies you do really great with it. As with Alex, it was really just a matter of waiting until you decided you wanted to do it.

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Overall I’m really enjoying this stage of your life, even with its challenges (which we’re getting better at dealing with). My favorite part of every day is the smattering of hugs and kisses I get from you pretty much constantly throughout the day. And that sweet, devilish grin of yours. You’re growing up so fast, and my reaction to that is much the same as yours when I tell you to put your toys away and get ready for bed– “NEVER!!!” šŸ˜‰ But alas… I know better.

All my love,
Mom

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