"Hi cracker," I say.
"What you doing?" squeaks the cracker.
"I'm eating breakfast. What are you doing?"
"Liam is EATING you?"
"Mmmhmm!" And to demonstrate, the cracker jumps into Liam's mouth. Now just a crescent of its former self, the remaining bit of cracker waves at me, and continues to talk through Liam's puckered lips.
"Hi Mommy!" The cracker is cheerful as ever.
"Do you LIKE getting eaten?" I ask.
"Mmmhmmmm!"' says the cracker enthusiastically.
"Is it nice in Liam's tummy?"
"Mmmmmhmmmm!" And with that, Liam pops the remaining bit of cracker in his mouth and swallows it down.
"What a lucky cracker!" I tell him. Liam beams.
Liam boards the big preschool school bus and sits down just as it is pulling away. He looks out the window and finds me. He is smiling. I blow him a kiss. He blows one back. Still smiling. We wave. The bus pulls away.
Liam is writing on a piece of paper. He is making what he believes to be letters. When he is done, he says, tapping the paper with each syllable, "S.O.A-- Liam. I did it!"
A typical conversation:
"What's Daddy doing?"
"Daddy's at work."
"What's Soren doing?"
"Soren is eating a cracker."
"What's Mommy doing?"
"Mommy is talking to Liam."
"Mommy is talking to Liam? What the-- are you kidding me?"
Briar is sitting in the computer room. It is after 8 PM. The door opens, just a crack. Bright little eyes peek in. She knows she should tell him to go back to bed. But he looks so hopeful. "Oh, come in," she says. The door opens more to reveal a smiling little Buddha. It's impossible to send him away. She pulls him up onto her lap and he contentedly leans into that comfy spot between her arm and her chest.
It's morning. Liam is stretched out across Abe's mother's lap She is playing his little belly like a bongo drum. He is delightedly singing a single long note, in love with the percussive cadence made by his voice and his belly. They are both smiling.
A not-uncommon scenario:
Soren: Mommy, can I have some water?
Liam: Mommy, can I have some water?
Soren: Are you copying me?
Liam: Are you copying me?
Soren: Stop copying me!
Liam: Stop copying me!
Soren: Mommy, he's copying me!
Liam: Mommy, he's copying me!
Sound of a fist connecting with flesh. Ear-shattering wailing.
One evening as I was tucking him in to bed, Liam said, "Mommy, I sosty." ("Sosty" means "thirsty.") Sure he was stalling, I decided to ignore him, hoping he would forget he had asked.
"Go to sleep, honey. Can I have a kiss?"
Kisses. "Good night, angel!"
"Mommy, I sosty a water. Pleeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaasssssssse?"
As I walk into the kitchen, I hear him say to himself, "Yessssssss!"
Liam is wearing my hoodie. I don't remember why. But obviously it looks more like a dress than a jacket on someone his size. He's got the hood up. We just came home from somewhere so Abe and I are standing in the driveway. Liam wanders off and we find him tiptoeing down the sidewalk in an exaggerated sneak motion. Abe called it a "weird creeping Yoda walk." We both think it is adorable.
Everywhere we go, Liam runs. He's got this little trot that he does, not much faster than the grown-ups walking. He holds his arms up high, so that his hands swing more by his armpits. His shoulders swing back and forth. The little wiggle he does is cute. Even Soren says so. He can go and go and go. Often, he likes to run away-- down the hall at church, out the front door at home, into the baseball field, into a different section of the store-- giggling wildly, contagiously, so that the adult chasing after him won't scold him too hard when they finally catch up.
Liam is playing with a little stuffed cheetah and a little stuffed bear. He hides one under a blanket. The makes the other one hold its paws over its eyes and count to ten. When the counter's eyes are uncovered, it immediately looks under the blanket. "I found you!" it exclaims happily.
Liam loves eating outside. He'll take his meals out on the balcony whenever he can.