Dearest Bean,

This month marks the day that you are officially “two and a half”. Not only do we not officially number your age in months, but you are now referred to in 1/2 years.

June didn’t start off so well. Our family dog, Bubba, passed away on June 1st. You asked where she was a few times, but didn’t really get what it meant that she died. You are just confused that she isn’t coming back. Thankfully, the rest of the month was good.

Finally, your appetite has developed. We have a fairly normal dinner every day! When you say that you are finished, I actually believe that you are full. Thank you so much for this.

A good portion of this month was spent sick. I developed Scarlet Fever and we had a small scare that you may have also had Strep throat – thankfully it was only a scare, but you did feel grumpy and under the weather for about a week.

Finally – we have a house with Air conditioning and you can sleep in a cool room. As it turns out, you really like having the fan on, so when you are having trouble sleeping, we turn on the fan anyway. Speaking of sleeping, you have started to protest your bed time on occasion. This is not news for any toddler, but you LOVE bed time. The whole routine from giving everyone in the house a hug to my saying “night, night. sleep tight, dream good dreams.” you love it all. Until a few days ago. It has only been a couple of nights, but it is distressing as I have seen others obsess about sleep. Given the choice, as long as you are growing and are actually healthy, I’d rather obsess about your food intake than sleep – because this means Daddy and I also get to sleep. If you can work on that and have it not repeat, that would be great. Thanks.

You are going through a phase of being shy with everyone, not just strangers. I love that you cling to me, but I feel bad for whomever is trying to get a hug – like your family, godparents and others who love you (and you love). I know you love them because you talk about them ALL the time. You even sing about some of them – which is a lot of fun to listen to, although have not caught it on video yet. I have the camera ready when you are, though.

Potty training – now that you are two and a half, it is time for “official training”. I recognize that this is the weirdest thing you ever did in your whole life, but it is an important part of growing up. You already are adaptable to going potty in various bathrooms, but in and out of our home and you LOVE to go (well – you love to wash your hands. While this is an important part of the process, you use washing your hands as the prize for activity on the potty. Hey – whatever works, I’ll go with it) You do love getting stickers as well – all good. The challenge is that you refuse to go “number two” on the potty. You discuss it, you know that it goes in the potty and not in your diaper. You even have been on the potty and told that you should try when you had to go (by “try” you thought about it and opted to get off the potty and within minutes “went” in your diaper). What is the mystery of the poo in the potty? I’ve asked other parents and teachers and others are also mystified. Since you “use your words” in other circumstances, you could fill me in – we can solve it, then write a book explaining to others… we would get enough money to send you to college through your PhD three times over! So, come on, help me out, would ya?

Swimming continues to be among your very favorite things in the world to do. You love to throw things in the pool, then have me go get them. It is sadly similar to fetch with me as the dog – but I do it anyway because it makes you laugh like there is nothing funnier in the world. I would take offense, but I like to believe that you just find it funny to have me pick up things and not you see me as a dog fetching for you.

You also transform into a ball of giggles when Daddy counts to five and grabs your face. He holds up his fingers, counting to five, then grabs your face. You also have huge giggle fits at the song in which monkeys jump on a bed, fall of and bonk their head, ending with the doctor saying “no more monkeys jumping on the bed”. You sing it loudly and proudly with great frequency.

Favorite things to do are still coloring (which you love love love) and play doh (messy, but you love it). You are also playing with your plethora of babies – although your baby doll ( the one with a skimpy top and no pants) is often in “time out” for a variety of problems, chief among them hitting people. I don’t know why you think of your baby as so abusive, but I hope this is not a reflection of your behavior when I am not around. I am also hopeful that you are not being hit by others (because I will have to take them OUT). OK, I won’t be violent – but I will make them cry.)

We love you very much and wish the very best for you. Love you lots!