I'm a big fan of lists, and I thought I'd let the blog be my electronic Post-It note today to share some observations about Mihret and the simple yet amazing ways she fills our days. We'll go with ten.
1. She loves pepper from the salt and pepper shaker, and she now asks for "Pepper, please" to put on almost anything at dinnertime. I doubted she could pepper her hummus without dousing it, but she was very gentle and she actually ended up asking for MORE pepper! We think that having the treasured gift of breastfeeding from her Mama Delame in Ethiopia may have prompted a love of somewhat spicy foods.
2. Her two favorite books right now are "Curious George and the Monkey" and "Zoo Animals." She can recite most of the first book, and names most of the animals in the second. When we climb up on our bed for storytime, she now brings the following items: 1) as many "babies" as she can carry; 2) the new pink rubbery ball and the new tiny Koosh ball she got from Grandma for Easter, and 3) her wooden cross that we haven't yet hung on the wall, that says "Jesus "heart" Me and I "heart" Jesus." We're working on having her keep the balls and the cross out of her mouth, but she is doing really well with not biting her books. Yay for good behaviors!
3. When it started to *snow* the other day after a weekend of (comparably) warm weather, I grumbled about it in the morning before I headed to work. Mihret looked at me and said, "Mama, it's _just_ snow." I guess I need an attitude adjustment. :)
4. Mihret has learned her colors and loves to point out what is purple, what is pink, what is yellow, etc. etc. Her "Hello Kitty Colors" book and her vibrantly colored bath toy cups have helped reinforce this. She kept mixing up "blue" and "red" for the longest time - I thought there'd be a better chance she'd mix up "red" and "pink," for example - but now she's getting most colors right about 95 percent of the time.
5. Josh found a way to help Mihret cope with getting her hair done in the morning. He took the play mirror from her talking purse and asked her if she wanted to watch while Daddy did her hair. She has been so much more cooperative since then. Her teachers at day care school have done her hair a few times (the cutest 'do was the four-poof 'do) and she loves that, so we're hoping to bring her to the stylist for a hair health checkup and a 'do that's a little more complicated.
6. She's taking to her big girl bed arrangement in her crib very well. She's also taken to bringing her stuffed platypus from Uncle Dave to bed - it lays on her pillow alongside two of her favorite "babies." Sometimes Grover gets to join them - sometimes he's relegated to a toy box.
7. Josh told me he's noticed she's figured out that when he plays the piano and reads the sheet music, there are directions on the pages that tell Daddy how to make the piano make music! Hopefully next year he will start teaching her some piano basics. For right now we're just openly letting her (respectfully) explore the instrument and seeing if she keeps up her interest.
8. She's growing to love Ethiopian pop music! We dance to it at home and watch Ethiopian music videos on YouTube.
9. She still points out the outline of Africa everywhere she sees it.
Our continued prayer is that God would help us be the parents Mihret, and He, need for us to be. I pray regularly for the support team of loved ones in Mihret's life who will surround her - those we know and those whom we haven't yet met - who will show her God's life, love and light, and eventually point her to Him. I hope someday to rejoice with her as she receives her new life in baptism - the outer symbol of her personal choice to live for God. Please, if you feel moved to do so, lift up a prayer for our daughter's someday choice.
Joshua Grover-David Patterson is a freelance writer, screenwriter, and blogger. His articles on pop culture, film and the Internet have appeared in The Post-Crescent, Bull magazine, delight! magazine and Film Threat. Patterson’s films have won 13 awards and appeared in 29 film festivals all over the world, including in Japan, Australia, Hungary, Norway, the UK, and throughout the United States. Patterson resides in Wisconsin with his wife and their daughter.