It is hard for me to believe that I’m a mama to a four-year-old boy. Seems like just yesterday, Nater Tater was a wide-eyed tot swinging in a swing. Now he runs and jumps and does things that amaze us every single day. Now, great fans of Nate, I don’t want you to fear. Just because Nate asked for birthday wishes to give to his teachers (and you all so generously responded) doesn’t mean that Nate didn’t get presents himself! We were sure to shower Nate with gifts to make sure he knows how special he is! Chad, Pete, and I got Nate a few gems including a hopscotch rug for our living room!
Nate’s been learning to balance on one foot and how to jump (and land on two feet instead of his bum!) and move forward in physical therapy, so we thought this was the perfect gift to help build upon those skills. We can also use the rug as a matching game, matching number tiles to each hopscotch square, and a counting game, putting the right number of items in each spot. Nate also scored what is apparently called “Pin Art.”
Do you remember this from your childhood? Chad had one and I remember playing with it at a friend’s house. It’s hundreds of flat pins (no pokey parts here) that take the shape of whatever’s pressed into it. Nate hasn’t caught on the the “pressing” part but, rather, enjoys making sure that each and every pin is perfectly flat against the surface.
Finally, at Ms. Susie’s suggestion, Nate got Melissa and Doug farm blocks. A few weeks ago, Susie sent home this picture of Nate.
Chad and I thought it was a cute picture until we read Susie’s note in Nate’s journal. Turns out, Nate did nearly all of this himself. Himself. Look at the picture again. Everything’s appropriately placed! The roof is on the building. The animals are standing and inside of the fence. The silo? Upright with the cap on top. This picture is nothing short of a miracle. If Nate likes farm blocks, farm blocks he shall have!
Many relatives sent generous gifts to Nate’s birthday wish and some, like Aunt Nan, Super Grandpa, and Mam, sent money to Nate, which we’ll put toward an outdoor trampoline, which is desperately needed to help Nate get some sensory input. But the biggest gift that Nate got in the mail was this gem from Aunt Patty, Uncle Blaine, and Nate’s cousin Mac:
Nate has two goals in life: to ring the bell at Trader Joe’s and to be able to ride a tricycle. We have two tricycles for Nate, both of which we scored at garage sales and neither of which is exactly right for Nate’s needs. But this one? It’s perfect for a four-year-old guy! Nate instantly knew what it was when we opened the box and he helped Chad assemble the bike quickly.
So far, Nate can only go backwards but he is working on the gross motor planning skills needed to make the bike go forward with his physical therapist. Soon he’ll be speed racing all around town on his tricked out trike!
Because it’s our favorite kind of cake and it’s so reasonably priced, Nate scored a ten-pound chocolate cake from Costco for our three-person party, which we shared with our neighbors who were happy to help out! The birthday boy enjoyed his fair share of the cake, too!
Thanks again to all of you who made Nate’s birthday such a joyous event and allowed us to give good fortune to others in honor of our boy’s life and hard work! Next week, I promise to share our adventures at Disney World and lessons learned — we gained some great insight into the park that we never knew before!