On the eve of Luke's 3rd birthday, we are busy getting ready for a party. Icing the cake, wrapping presents, straightening the house, hanging streamers, mowing the lawn, unveiling the new Spiderman pool, agonizing over the hundreds of water balloons I will fill tomorrow... Throwing birthday parties for our boys is just so much fun! As we run through all of our to-do's, I enjoy thinking about Luke.
When Luke was born, he looked exactly like Zach. Differences in personality began to show at 4 months, and they just keep coming! Luke absolutely adores his big brother and copies everything he does, but Luke has a style all his own...
Luke is fiercely independent. This can cause some difficulty at times, but I am so proud of how he is beginning to accept assistance when needed. I am always curious to see how his independent, strong-willed determination will impact his career choice. I've always said this child believes he should be running a small country!
Luke is tough. He cracked his head open a few weeks ago and only cried for a couple of minutes. He was laughing and climbing all over the room when we went to the hospital for a staple. He makes for a very pleasant patient, but can also be difficult to treat since he laughs through pain! You just never really know how he feels.
Laughter... This child loves to laugh! He loves to tell jokes. He loves to hear jokes. He listens to comedians using his dad's ipod in the car!! He does impersonations. He was born to laugh.
He loves puzzles and he's very good at them. He has dozens. He can do any of the Melissa & Doug variety of puzzles all by himself, and is beginning to do some 70 piece puzzles with smaller pieces (and some assistance). The box I read the other day said age 7+. I am always mesmerized when I watch him do puzzles. I'm pretty sure he's better at it than I am.
Luke has a love affair with all animals. His favorite changes everyday... A trip into PetSmart for dog food is never a quick trip, as we have to visit every animal in the building.
Luke is rarely still and even more rarely quiet. He is a chatty little boy who makes friends easily and can hold a conversation with absolutely anyone. His conversations usually lead to something very silly that causes him to show off his big belly laugh and precious dimples - he has a dominant one that you can always see on his left cheek, the other shows up when he flashes a broad smile.
I probably use the phrase "monkey see - monkey do" five times a day. He does absolutely everything he sees Zach do. One day this led to a broken vase in a furniture store... Ah, the little brother syndrome.
Luke is a very physical young man. He is always climbing or swinging and he loves sports. As Zach plays soccer on the field, Luke is on the sidelines cheering him on and practicing his own moves.
I think that Luke loves risks too. We have become used to it, so we don't freak out anymore when he's doing something we would never have let Zach do at his age... So far, he hasn't had an accident as a result of a crazy risk. We continue to pray over that one! We fully expect him to have a frequent flyer card for stitches, staples and fractures. We're just praying that it's never anything serious.
While Luke fancies himself a BIG BOY (and I sometimes forget that he's not), there are reminders that he is still only two years 364 days old. He sleeps with a satin sheep and sucks his precious thumb in bed. He tries to give the thumb up every now and then, only to take it back with a shy smile. It's comforting, so we let it slide for now. An orthodontist will thank us one day!
Luke loves to try things on his own - playing with friends, some pretty serious pretend fighting, going off to Sunday school and VBS with his little buddies, riding bikes with the big kids. But, he always comes running when Mom or Dad throw open that garage door after even the briefest of trips away from the house. He is a little boy who loves his family - Mommy, Daddy, Zachary and Apollo.
And we love you, Luke. We are blessed beyond words to know you. God is so good to us! Happy birthday, my little Spiderman in training.