Hannah and Jack spend a lot of time together, and watching the two of them grow up so close in age is really sweet. People ask if they're twins all the time, especially when they're both pushing little shopping carts around Trader Joe's (please send strength my way for our grocery store trips) or when we're out for a walk and both of them sit in the stroller with their blankets, sucking their thumbs. Their mornings together are special. Jack gets to be "in charge" while Lilly is at school, although Hannah may be slowly taking over that role. Hannah has spent 20 months watching the other two, so she has learned everything that Jack knows about trucks and trains and will point out cement mixers to you on the highway, or a police car with its flashing lights that has pulled someone over. From Lilly, she has developed a love of crayons and coloring, and setting up tea parties for all the stuffed animals in the basement. She is fully her own little person now, and is right in the mix with the other two at all times.
For awhile, Hannah had figured out how to really get on Jack's nerves. She would run up to Jack and take his blanket or his Elmo, or close the basement door as soon as Jack went downstairs (which he had just worked up the courage to do by himself), causing immediate tears from Jack. However, after a couple of weeks of doing this, and with quite a bit of encouragement on our part, Jack has reacted less and less to this taunting, causing Hannah to lose interest and go on her way. She also went through a week of biting! This was a first in our family--Lilly and Jack skipped right over a biting phase, but Hannah tried it out one day when Jack took a toy away from her, and it was effective. Jack backed off and got upset and Hannah got her toy back. She bit Lilly later that day for the same reason, and then the next day, when we asked Jack to help Hannah put a toy away, his response was, "No, I don't want to touch Hannah's toy...otherwise she'll bite me!" Well, regardless of how effective the biting was, Hannah is smart enough to know that this is not acceptable behavior. So now Hannah has her own quiet corner, where she sits (for about 30 seconds) when she's done something that she is not supposed to. Hannah's misdemeanors include drawing on walls, pulling all the clothes out of her drawers, and other "helpful" toddler activities.
Jack has always been extremely patient with Hannah and even if she drives him crazy and runs circles around the house with his blanket, all he wants to do is play with her. Jack will ask Hannah to come and play with him, and assign a truck or train or car or something to build out of lego to her. The other day, Jack was finishing his snack at the table and called out, "Hannah, come and watch me finish my snack." Joseph and I both started laughing at that appealing offer, and as we did, Hannah called back, "Okay, Jackie!" and went running off to watch him eat.
Hannah calls Jack, "Jackie," which made me cringe the first time I heard it. But it's what she does, and now I can't help but smile when I hear this little voice calling for "Jackie" around the house. Uncle Joef quickly became Joefy, so if you don't have a "y" at the end of your name, Hannah will add one.
|These two are pretty good at "selfies".|
|I bet this was the first time anybody sang "Happy Birthday" to this pumpkin!|
Jack takes on different roles depending on who he is playing with. Lilly tends to organize all the games when she is home (imagine that!) and Jack mostly goes along with what she says. With Hannah, Jack is content to play next to her, although he would prefer her to have a truck in her hand at all times too. He doesn't understand why Hannah always wants to play with Daisy, her baby. I can't wait to see who all these little people become in the years ahead. But for now, I'd like them to stay little and cuddly.