Happy birthday kiddo! Today you are two!
I am so happy we spent this special day together. The morning started out with the gift of bacon and a birthday donut. Most days aren't going to start much better than that. We sang "Happy Birthday" twice so you could blow out the candles out a couple times.
I stayed home from work, and we all went to pre-school for your special day. Your Grandma Vicki joined the fun. You got to wear a crown and the class sang you "Happy Birthday" again. Lucky duck. Your Mom created a special booklet about you that Teacher Judy showed to the class. It included your handprints, original art and pictures of family. You acted a little shy with all the attention, but you didn't cry under the pressure. Good job.
Tonight we ate gnocchi for your birthday dinner. You pronounce gnocchi very well, likely better than 98 percent of all Americans. You thought your birthday was yesterday and asked for pizza then, which we ordered for you anyway. Pizza and pasta back-to-back is my kind of Italian diet. It's a carb-induced way to get back into the swing of things at home.
This past week, your Mom and I felt brave and flew us all out to Indiana (by way of Chicago) so Matteo could meet our extended family. We used buddy passes from your Grandma Vicki and Papa Steve to pay low fares and take open seats on flights. As a result, the flight times were not favorable and we ended up taking a redeye flight on the way out to Chicago. You were supposed to sleep but instead stayed up the entire night, too excited to be on an airplane and hold my happiness for ransom until you could watch Elmo on the laptop. You loved seeing all the airplanes at both Sea-Tac and Chicago airports and loved pronouncing "Chi-ca-go" over and over. You can obsess over three-syllable words.
That was a long night to get through, but the payoff was that you were so exhausted the next day you fell asleep on my chest. I'll take a sleepless night for some sleepy cuddles.
One of the highlights of the trip was going to the Fort Wayne Children's Zoo. They had awesome exhibits and the animals were close up. You always love water animals and were enthusiastic at the sea lion tank watching them lap back and forth. My favorite part was the walk-through kangaroo exhibit. The zoo had a couple rides, too. You were so elated to be on a "choo choo train" and enjoyed the lazy river ride through the Australian exhibit. When we were in line you kept saying "boat-a ride-a" like an Italian speaking English.
Your all-time favorite phrases right now are "No Daddy" or "Hold you Daddy." In both cases, I have my hands full. If I ask you any question, it's usually a "No," almost out of principle. You used those phrases a lot in Indiana. It takes you a little while to warm up to people you haven't seen for awhile, so I got a good arm workout.
The same thing happened today at preschool. You said "Hold you Daddy" over and over. You didn't care about the kids. You just wanted to perch high in my arms and get some Dad time, a weekday rarity. I'll take what I can get, too.