A fact that makes me smile is that, for a brief time in the middle of this celebratory day, it was snowing, much like it did the day he was born - and if you know Oklahoma winters (particularly these past two), you'll know having snow on the exact same day two years in a row (especially when they represent only half of the occasions it has snowed in our area over the entirety these two years), you'll know it's a downright miracle. I like to think it's due to the nickname his sister gave him before he was born. Because a Penguin needs his snow.
At this point in his life, he is already a talker - his most common words are "ball" (definitely his favorite toy), "thank you," and "bye-bye" (though some of us swear we heard him say, "Hi, Aunt Dayla" just the other day). He doesn't walk yet, but he sure can cruise along any object, toddle while holding a hand and take his own steps while pushing an object. The only thing standing between him and full-out running is a lack of confidence in his ability to balance himself.
He loves to climb. Of all our children, he is the climbing-est. He can tackle a full set of stairs with no reservations (despite the cries of his parents who are slightly more aware of his inability to successfully descend those same steps). He regularly climbs the step-stool in front of the toy kitchen to tinker in the plastic sink. He has taken his fair share of tumbles from this same stool, resulting, already, in many bruises and one teeth-cut lip, but he is determined and tough - one spill (or two or three) will not keep him from doing what he loves. Likewise with discipline. A swatted hand is a small price to pay for playing with those buttons (whether on the phone or any remote he can get in his hands), a cost he most willingly pays over and over again. Persistence and perseverance are his defining attributes.
Cooking for Momma
While typically rather serious and slow to show anything other than a blank stare to someone new, he can be such a little ham - he loves the camera. Most children stop what they're doing when the camera is pulled out, and so does this guy, but only to grin as wide as he can, showing off his only four teeth, declaring, "Eeee!"
Cheesing for the camera while riding Horsey Gram
He is most happy when he is involved with others. He enjoys being around his brother and sister most - they bring the giggles (and, yes, the tears) out of this otherwise-rather-stoic little man - and he regularly chases them from room to room just to be with them (he also clambers onto Sissy's bed quite eagerly whenever possible - but this might have more to do with his love of climbing).
Sharing the giant cardboard box with Emmett
He is also quite helpful, putting things away when asked (well, about half the time) and even helped Mommy with the laundry for the first time yesterday (well, other than just scattering previously-folded clothing) - first taking things from the dryer to put them in the basket and then hugging the small items of clothing she gave him to toss into the dryer. He was quite happy to help.
All of these developments in just one year - we can only imagine what his vast future holds.
1093. A year full of life
1094. Fluffy white flakes falling to the earth
1095. Offering a listening ear
1096. A weekend with the grandparents