S: Joshua James SPEEDIE - My First Four Years
BC: And Now I Am Four
FC: Joshua James SPEEDIE | My First Four Years
1: To our darling Joshua, Who we love with all our hearts, And to Grandma & Grandad "Bandie Doggie," Grandma & Grandad "Jack Doggie" and Aunty Katrina...a keepsake of our Josh's first 4 years. Love from Mummy & Daddy Hilton, WA, 2012
2: For many years, we had hoped and prayed for a little baby of our own, to love and care for. But after a long wait, in early February 2008 we got the best and most exciting news of our lives - we were going to have a baby! We felt overwhelmed with joy and excitement. We wondered many things. Would you be a boy or a girl? Would you love sports like your dad or music and reading like your mum...or all of those things? Would you look very much like Mummy or Daddy, or a bit of both? What kind of person would you be? We couldn't wait to meet you and hold you in our arms. For nine long months, you grew inside Mummy's tummy. We saw special photos of you, called ultrasounds, in the doctor's office. When you had been growing there for just 7 weeks, we could already see your heart beating. And before long, we could see your fingers and toes, your face....the ultrasound could even look at see if your heart was healthy! Every glimpse of you gave us hope and joy. | Psalm 139:13-16 For You created my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from You when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in Your book before one of them came to be.
3: So many things to prepare while we waited for you to arrive! We wanted your room to be special so you would know how much you were loved. Daddy put together your furniture. Grandma Jack Doggie made your beautiful quilt., and Grandma Bandie Doggie made your curtains and special lamb blankets. Mummy organised things, and supervised! Many friends gave us special gifts to help us to look after you well..
4: Wait...here it comes...it's a... it's a...it's a BOY! A beautiful, beautiful baby boy. | Our hearts were filled with the most indescribable love for you from the very first moment we saw and held you. | JOSHUA JAMES SPEEDIE Born: 11:25am, Monday 20th October, 2008, at Mercy Hospital, Mount Lawley. Weight: 3.14kgs, 6lb 14oz Length:49cm Obstetrician: Dr Charles Armstrong | One look at you told us all we needed to know...that you were perfect. | FIRST YEAR
5: During your hospital stay, you would meet many new people...firstly, of course, Mummy and Daddy. Next were your Grandmas and Grandads, who were so happy and proud. And of course, you also met your lovely Mr Bun, who has been your most special toy, right from the beginning. You were about the same size as each other! | This is the proudest Daddy in the whole world!
6: Daddy spent every possible moment he could get away from work at the hospital with you and Mummy. We were still pretty amazed at what a gorgeous baby we had produced! You had perfect little fingers and toes, a dear little nose and ears...and of course, you had red hair, like Mummy and Daddy! Just to hold you or watch you sleep gave us great joy.
7: A newborn baby is the beginning of a journey, in which two become three and many new adventures become possible. A newborn baby is an opportunity to discover the limits of human endurance, the depths of the well of patience, and an unending supply of love, joy and hope vaster than all the stars in the sky. A newborn baby is a treasure to nurture, cherish and to hold in our arms and our hearts.
8: These photos were taken by GF Photography while you were in hospital. You were 8 days old.
9: Finally, after more than a week in hospital, it was time to bring you home! Daddy had been taking your wraps home each night, so Toby and Tasha could get used to your smell. We weren't sure how they would feel about this big change in our lives. Ever since we'd decorated the nursery, Toby knew it was "baby's room." Daddy mentioned your name once to Toby and Tasha on the day you were born. A couple of days later, he said that he was going to put some things in "Joshua's room." Toby ran straight there - clever dog! Our worries about how they would feel about you soon went away. They were so excited to meet you, but they also seemed to know that they had to take care around you too. We filled your cot with the many, many lovely gifts from friends and family. The "nappy cake" was made by Grandma Jack Doggie, and the bear picture is one of Grandma Bandie Doggie's "sand paintings."
10: How did we manage to have so many photos of you sleeping? You didn't seem to do very much of it, unless we were out somewhere relatively noisy! Everyone thought you were a wonderful baby who slept a lot...little they knew! Poor little man, you had such terrible reflux that you cried and cried all the time because your tummy was sore. We were so very glad when the doctor found special baby formula that you could drink without getting sick.
11: Your first bath at home, and first walk in the pram
12: Daddy bought you the special outfit on the left, and Mummy knitted the top on the right. Buying baby clothes was pretty exciting, but we never realised until you came along just how quickly a little baby grows out of things!
13: Grandma and Grandad Bandie Doggie are so proud of you! After you were born, Grandad was telling everyone, "His name's Joshua James. Isn't that a great name?" Grandma often helped out looking after you when Mummy was struggling with lack of sleep when you were very small. Mummy went to New Zealand for a Girls' Brigade conference in Auckland when she was about 4 months pregnant. In a gift shop, she found this dear little lamb...the first toy she had ever bought you. Mr Bun was really too big for the basinette, so Lambie slept and played with you in there.
14: Wow, there you were, just two months old, and already attending your first wedding! You wore a spunky new outfit for the occasion. At the marriage of Ashley Kavanagh and Charmaine Dudley, 20th December 2008, Caversham House, Swan Valley.
15: Baby's First Christmas | It didn't seem like long at all before you were celebrating your first Christmas. Your cousins Matt & Chad came to visit a few days before Christmas - they thought you were pretty special! On Christmas Day, Uncle Dave came to visit you and give you a gift (did you know he came three times while you were in hospital?! He was really excited to have his first nephew!). You also got to spend some time with Aunty Ailsa, Aunty Yvonne and other members of Grandad Jack Doggie's family in the evening. They all thought you were super cute.
16: At just two months old, you were too young to get much of what Christmas is all about. We do believe, though, that you knew you were loved, that people who love you spent plenty of time with you, that there was a sense of fun to the day, and that some interesting new toys came your way. Grandma and Grandad Jack Doggie were not able to be with you that Christmas, as they were visiting your cousin Clayton in America.
17: We took time out to visit Aunty Lisa's memorial at Pinnaroo that day too, and also the memorials for your Great-Ma and Great-Pa Smith. We know they would all love you so much and be just so very proud of you. Great-Pa would probably reckon you are another "little red-headed bombshell" in our family.
18: Look at you! You are doing such a great job of raising your head all by yourself, and trying to get your knees moving a little too. These were taken on 28th December, at a picnic at Point Walter with Aunty Robyn, Uncle Jon & Maxwell. The cool rug with the tiger on it was a Christmas gift, made by Aunty Katrina. On 31 December, you reached what Mummy and Daddy thought was the best milestone ever - you slept through the night!
19: Water Baby On the 8th January 2009, you and Mummy started going along to the hydrotherapy pool at St John of God Hospital in Murdoch. They had a terrific mother and baby class. You would participate in fun water games with Mummy, with songs like "London Bridge," "Daddy's Taking Us to the Zoo Tomorrow" and the "Dingle-Dangle Scarecrow." You seemed to really enjoy it. After your session, kind volunteers would look after all of the babies, and Mummy would get to do a class of her own. It was great fun and a fantastic way to introduce you to water.
20: You can sit up!!! What a great milestone, and an important step toward being able to do so many fun things that you couldn't do before. You are three months old today. | Looks like you were already keen to be Daddy's little helper! Bet Daddy never would have guessed that a little boy who could only just sit on his own would help him take his medicine! | Hmm, am I standing on my own yet, Grandma? | Tickle, tickle, tickle! "That's funny Mum...now stop!"
21: This jumpsuit is one of several sent to you by Uncle Ray & Aunty Carol in the UK. They also sent you Little Charlie Bear a bit later. | You did meet Uncle Ray and Aunty Carol on one of their visits to Australia, but you were too young at the time to remember.
22: Sitting in your rocker, with those cute animals hanging from the bar is fun. But playing with Daddy is even more fun! Wheee...it's a flying baby! You look like you're not too impressed with Daddy's jokes though. As much fun as it is to rock, play, listen to Daddy and all those enjoyable things, it's all a lot of hard work for a little man, and you definitely had a well-deserved nap. The message on the bib is so true: "Born to Hug."
23: Wow, although it seems you're not a very long way into life yet, so much has changed! Your physical appearance has changed a lot already, with those cute little chubby baby cheeks. You were an alert little baby right from the start, and we can see the brightness in your eyes and smile. Sitting in the high chair is a good start toward eating "real" food, not just milk. You first smiled at us at 4 weeks, and you certainly put a lot of practice in on it from then onward! What a cheeky little grin you have! The fabric cube on your high chair tray in these pictures was a constant source of fascination for you, usually attached to your pram. In the bottom right picture, you're wearing a Gro-bag (baby sleeping bag)...the only reliable way to keep you in your covers at night, you wriggly worm!
24: "Hey Grandad, what does this blue and yellow thing do? Shake, shake, shake....cool, it's a rattle! There'll be lots of fun to have with that." | Your activity mat was a fun place to play, with all kinds of fascinating things, and a great way to learn new skills too. | "I'm too busy to sleep! I've got an important story to tell. Now, two by two, the animals all came into Noah's Ark..." | "Hey Daddy....what's going on? I had a bath just yesterday, promise!"
27: Professional photos taken at Image Portrait Studio, when you were 6 months old. It's amazing to look at these and see how much character you've developed since you were first born. You're bright, cheeky, observant, and just plain gorgeous.
31: The photos in the Dockers outfit were taken at the professional photo shoot, and Daddy went down to Dockers training one night and got legendary captain Matthew Pavlich to sign it with a message to you - how lucky are you?! The photo later appeared in the Dockers' members magazine - you're a star! Daddy also had to make sure you were introduced to soccer. What a cool Perth Glory suit! (Good thing both your teams have similar colours!) Looks like you're showing some early talent as a soccer player...but hopefully not as a keeper like your Dad!
32: Here you are, with Uncle Dave again. He's pretty happy to have a snuggle with you! On the right, is your first attempt at eating solid food, at five and a half months old. "Yuck! That's not milk!" But it didn't take you long to discover that real food is good stuff, and you would happily tuck into just about anything. Mummy and Grandma Bandie Doggie made all your baby food.
33: "Hmm...here's a comfortable lap. I think I might just... ....ZZZZZZZZ!!!" | Here is your Great-Great Uncle Frank Rixom. He's your oldest living relative (a little older than your Great-Gran). He thinks you are one fantastic little chap, and you seem pretty happy with him too!
34: "Hey Daddy, whatcha drinking there? Looks more interesting than this boring old juice. Mind if I try some?" (Disclaimer: It was ginger beer, not alcohol, and you are not really drinking it - the bottle is empty!) Daddy's boy is always keen to know all about what Daddy is doing and to be part of it with him. | What a cheeky, happy face. The little white tam-o'shanter was knitted by Mummy. Your cute face, gorgeous smile, beautiful red hair and happy nature always attracted lots of comments from people wherever we went. Even total strangers were enthralled by you!
35: "Hey Toby, can we be friends?" Toby was interested in you and keen to be your friend right from the beginning. Tasha was cautiously interested (typical - she's always cautious!), but a bit unsure about you to start with. You've been fascinated with them both from very early in life.
36: "Whoa, Dad...you're HOW old?!" Daddy always said he wanted to become a father before he turned 40....well, he made it! We had a party with lots of friends and family members there. Your cousins Matt & Chad came for a while. One of your favourite people, Uncle Mike, was there too (you can see Aunty Jan behind the balloon). You thought the best bit of the party was the balloon!
37: One day, when you were about 3 months old, and your poor, refluxy tummy was giving you a hard time and you wouldn't stop crying, Daddy sat down with you in front of the computer, brought up YouTube, and typed in "Wiggles." Well, that was it - one instant Wiggles fanatic! You were much too interested to keep on crying. You absolutely loved them from the first moment you heard them sing and watched them dance. Some of your favourite songs were "Toot, Toot, Chugga, Chugga Big Red Car," "Can You Point Your Fingers and Do the Twist," and "Rock-a-Bye Your Bear." Wiggles DVDs turned out to be a great way to keep you entertained while you played in your playpen. Any toy with the Wiggles on it - like the little car you're sitting on here - was sure to be a hit too!
38: You didn't only love listening to the Wiggles' music, but you were soon fascinated with both Mummy's and Grandma's pianos. Grandma often plays the piano with you and sings songs, and Mummy has often done the same. You've always had a range of musical toys to play with, both bought ones and homemade toys such as some barley, lentils and split peas in a plastic bottle - it made a great shaker! | From the moment you could crawl, the dog door became the bane of Mummy's life. You soon learned it was your gateway to a more exciting world, and you quickly became adept at slipping through it. Not long after that, you also learned that it's fun to play in the dogs' water bowl...Mummy had a really hard time keeping you in dry, clean clothes some days! | Why is it that you could fall asleep in your high chair so easily, when we had so much trouble trying to get you to sleep in your bed?!
39: Prison Break "Here's the plan...lean over the activity table, grab the rings, pull myself up...." It wasn't long before it became really difficult to keep you in the playpen (where Mummy really needed you to be, because her back was giving her a lot of trouble, and chasing you round was just too hard!). No matter how many times we'd move things, you learned to shift them so you could climb out. You were really on the move!
40: Baby on the Move! Wow...you've definitely mastered those crawling skills by now, and you're starting to wonder ...is there something more to life than this? Mum and Dad don't crawl! You discover that pulling yourself up into a standing position gives you a whole new perspective on the world.
41: Hmm...who left these yummy baby rice cakes here? | It wouldn't hurt to have one...or maybe two... | But I'd better not get caught in the act... | So grab those treats and go, go, go!
42: Daddy's Taking Us To The Zoo Tomorrow...No, It's Today! | Grandma & Grandad Jack Doggie were really looking forward to going to America to see Clayton. But they knew they would miss you so much, so we decided to all have a great day out with you before they went. Grandma, Grandad, Mummy, Daddy & you all hopped in the car, and off we went to South Perth for your first ever trip to the zoo.
43: You were fascinated with all the animals. You certainly weren't too little to get a lot out of the trip. | Who had more fun on the carousel horses... you, or Grandad?
45: Who's monkeying around?
46: "Hey...this standing business is easy-peasy. I'm the king. I've got it mastered. In fact, I'm writing the manual. Heck, I could do it with both eyes closed and.... WHOA!!! Who moved the room?!" | Splish, splash, I was taking a bath...
47: You always thought it was a great treat to go to Little Champs Playhouse on North Lake Road (it's moved to the Stock Road Markets site now), sometimes just with Mum or Grandma, or other times to meet Sally and Lachie. The racetrack was a definite favourite, as was the ball pit. It took you a lot longer to be confident to climb up to the slide and come down all by yourself, but you got there in the end.
48: Mummy & Daddy's Happy Little Man Having you in our lives puts a little bit of sunshine into every day.
49: First bike ride | You really didn't like the look of the baby seat on Daddy's bike to begin with. You cried at being put in there. But when you settled down, you really began to enjoy the ride. You got to be so relaxed about the whole deal that you dropped off to sleep on the way home!
50: For the first three years of your life, Mummy was Captain of the Girls' Brigade at Bicton. You came along to GB for the first time when you were 6 weeks old! The girls thought you were fantastic, and you seemed to enjoy all the attention. You came along to lots of additional GB events, such as church parades, and even to the City to Surf 4km walk. You slept for most of the walk! One of your favourite people, Edele, is on the right in the photo below, and Aunty Cathy is in the City to Surf photo.
51: Aunty Katrina came to visit from America in September 2009, shortly before your first birthday. She thought you were pretty fantastic and was thrilled to be able to spend some time with you. She wished she could have brought Clayton to visit too...how excited you would have both been if that had happened! You have talked to Aunty Katrina lots of times on webcam and on the phone since then and she loves to hear all about you.
52: Say, how far did you say Aunty Katrina came, just to see me? Wow, she really loves me lots!
53: Aunty Katrina gave you some great presents before she returned home.... it was like having your birthday a few weeks early! Ernie & Bert still sit on your bed at night. | "Hey Mum, this is what the cool dude around town is wearing this season - a groovy Wiggles bucket hat!" | "Wow, really, for me? Thanks very much!" | "The pressies were great, but the Wiggles gift bag is even better!"
54: "Hey Mr Bun, check out my great dance moves!" You and Mr Bun have been absolutely inseparable companions from very early on. | Babies get lots of colds, and even grown ups can cough for a long time after a cold, but when you'd been coughing for 2 1/2 months after a couple of colds, we were concerned something wasn't quite right, so we went off to see your lovely paediatrician, Dr Colin Derrick, at Rockingham Hospital. The conclusion was that you were allergic to milk, so you went back on prescription formula, which did the trick. You had to have a few nebulisers, just like Daddy, to get you well again. Some days you cooperated, and some days you didn't! | "Mmm....these are delicious sandwiches!" You were a great eater as a baby and enjoyed all kinds of foods.
55: "Come, they told me, par-um-pum-pum-pum....me and my drum." You've had some fun playing with a variety of musical instruments, and plenty of encouragement from all the family to enjoy music. | "Hey Jack-doggie, did you hear the one about why the dog crossed the road? No? Um....yeah, I can't quite remember the punchline, but it's an absolute crackup, it really is!" | Your first crush... Pinky Pinkerton, from one of your favourite shows, Bunnytown. Whenever Pinky was on the screen, you couldn't take your eyes off her!
56: Wow...where did the year go? One minute we were bringing you home from hospital....next minute, look at this big, bright boy turning 1! You thought this birthday stuff was pretty good. Your presents included your own piano keyboard from Grandma & Grandad Bandie Doggie, who also joined with Mummy and Daddy to give you your special tricycle. | Baby's First Birthday!
57: Your birthday fell on a Girls' Brigade day. The older girls had been learning about childcare, with you as their subject. You had visited once a month throughout 2009, so they could see and hear about how you'd changed since your last visit. They decided to throw you a special GB birthday party, complete with cake, decorations and a gift they'd made themselves - some girls even brought you gifts they'd bought too. We all had a great time! | Looks like the chair Grandma & Grandad Jack Doggie gave you for your birthday is a big hit. You had a really great day! | "And the Wiggles all hopped into their Big Red Car. Click, clack, front and back! Greg was driving the Big Red Car, and then...." | "And I felt this tug on my line, and I reeled it in....the biggest fish you've ever seen in your life, but would you believe, it got away!"
58: With Lachie's birthday only 3 days after yours, we decided to have a combined party at Little Champs with all your friends from Mother's Group. You had a great time and got some lovely gifts. | Josh & Lachie's Combined Party
59: Your birthday seemed to go on for days! There was the GB party and time with your grandparents on your actual birthday, this joint party on Lachie's birthday (23rd), and then a big friends and family party on the weekend.... | Here you are with your best mate, Lachie. Could a guy possibly have more fun than this on his birthday?!
60: Grandma Bandie Doggie made your cool Wiggles birthday cake. You thought it was great! | Lots of friends and family members were there, including Uncle Dave, Lynne & Tony, Aunty Ailsa, Fiona & Rowena and heaps more. | Again, you got even more presents - wow, talk about one spoiled little birthday boy! Some presents are great for a while and then you move on to other things, but "Uncle Dave's bike" is still a firm favourite.
61: "The state of MY face? Well, gee....you should try looking in a mirror yourself!" | "Mmm..I reckon I'll start a new trend - the Birthday Cake Diet! It'll be a hit!" | "On second thoughts, it would only be fair to share a bit of this with Toby..." | All your lovely presents. We hardly knew where to put them all!
62: Your Dedication We decided that, on the day of your family & friends party, we would also have a special dedication ceremony for you at our church. Some of your friends and family members came along to the service. This is where we promised to bring you up in the church, to help you to learn about God's love and to guide you on the right path in life. Pastor Mike Fawcett, who conducted the dedication, is still one of your very favourite people in all the world. The "Kingdom Warriors" kids sang a special song just for you on the day - "Let the Children Come," from Hillsongs Kids. We also sang the praise song, "Because He Lives," with the verse that says, "How sweet to hold A newborn baby And feel the pride And joy he gives But greater still The calm assurance This child can face uncertain days Because He lives."
63: Can we go to the park? Like any little boy or girl, you love trips to the park, where you have so many great opportunities to try out new skills, play with Mummy and Daddy, and just have heaps and heaps of FUN! | SECOND YEAR
64: Bibra Lake Bibra Lake, with the playgrounds next to it, is one of your favourite places. There are several playgrounds, so you have lots of opportunities to explore different activities every time you go. One of the big attractions is the food van - not so much for the food, but because in the second van attached to it, they have some cockies and parrots, which you just love. There are, of course, lots of wild birds to look at, like these lovely swans and cygnets. | You really enjoyed sharing that ice cream sandwich with Mummy! | "Higher, Mummy, higher!" You love going on the swings. | Look at that confident walking! What big steps! | Home...shops...park - anywhere is a good place for a cuddle!
65: "What's the joke, Mum? Oh, you think you can keep a big boy like me in here, huh?" | It's tiring, being a super-active one year old! | "At the Copa, Copacabana...c'mon, sing it with me now!" | Toyboxes are good, but any box will do, even a nappy box! | The toybox terror! Climbing into a toybox sure is a great game. The box is always so full of toys that we're not quite sure how you manage to fit in!
66: Your first ever Wiggles Concert! Even before you went to the concert, you were the Wiggles Number One Fan! If you saw anything with the Wiggles on it at home, you'd start to dance! You could hardly believe your eyes when you saw the real, live Wiggles in front of you - not on a DVD! It took a while for you to get into enjoying yourself, because you were still trying to take in this amazing fact! You were even excited before the show - I had to take you away from the merchandise queue, because you were getting too difficult to hold! Some people thought it would be a waste of time to take a one year old, but you loved it.
67: "Hey Dad...it's the biggest toybox I've ever seen!" Your sandpit got plenty of use, even before it was installed and filled! | "Now Toby, let's try this again...sit! Lay down! Roll over! Well, you got the sit part right, but you really need to do some work on the other aspects before you pass doggy school!" | "Daddy, can I wash your car?" | World's cheapest paddle pool! Staying cool on a hot day. | "Yes, I see what you mean.Well, I'm no economist, but here's what I'd do..."
68: Getting Cool in the Pool
70: Your 2nd Christmas Christmas was more fun this year, because you were at least starting to understand about presents and being excited to open them. You still use the blue and red balls and the blocks. You enjoyed your Christmas dinner, right down to the pudding and custard, and put up with wearing the silly party hat for a while. You weren't too happy about the crackers though - the "BANG!" scared you silly and made you cry. Apart from that, it was a great day for everyone.
71: Sandpit Heaven You spent many fun hours out here, playing with buckets, spades, trucks, diggers, watering cans and so on. Even winding the umbrella up and down became an exciting game! At times, we planted flowers in pots that sat next to the sandpit, which added another dimension of delight for you. | Our backyard at Touchell Retreat would not easily fit a swingset. It already had a cubby house when we moved there. So we decided the best thing we could add for you to play with was a sandpit. Daddy worked really hard to level the ground, lay a cement edging and some rubber playground matting, install a big umbrella and then, of course, install the sandpit and the sand to make it a fun and safe place for you to play.
72: You just loved hanging out in the spa with Daddy. On with the bathers, and into the water! At times, you would also sit in a duckie swim ring, which gave you a measure of independence, allowing you to float back and forth across the spa by yourself (under strict supervision, of course!). You and Daddy had many, many fun games together in the spa, sometimes joined by Mummy. | Serious Dad & Son Time
73: Water Baby You started baby swimming classes at Murdoch, but then moved to the Fremantle Leisure Centre, for classes for toddlers. You loved most of the activities, but couldn't stand to put your head under water. The teachers made the sessions so much fun. We had to stop classes when Mummy's back became too sore to cope.
74: "Just lazing around, nothing much to do today, maybe I'll watch The Wiggles Movie..." | "Gee, the suspense is absolutely killing me - does Greg Wiggle get his magic wand back? And will Wally get to the magic show on time?" | They say toddlers will get into anything and everything... | But don't you think this is taking it to extremes?
75: It's a scientific fact (I'm sure it is)... The quantity of chocolate to be found on a toddler's face and hands (and sometimes on his clothes as well) will always exceed the quantity of chocolate given to said toddler, even if some has been observed to successfully disappear into the mouth of said toddler. And you seem pretty proud of it, too! | "Who needs a reverse gear when you could just sit facing backwards instead?" | "Peekaboo! I see you! And you can see that I'm mega-cute, too!" | "Now if I just press this button, I'm sure that I'll be able to make Foxtel work on Mummy's computer!"
77: Summer Fun | Where could you possibly find more fun than at the beach? Walking on the sand, Making sand castles, Finding pretty shells, Paddling at the water's edge, Going out where it's a bit deeper with Mummy... All the best summer fun in one place!
78: "Don't let me fool you... I may be a mild-mannered, unassuming couch potato (and Foxtel remote expert) by day... ...but I'm a crusading, caped (or at least, dressing-gowned) crusader and tricycle stunt rider by night!" | "Move over Gordon Ramsay...the best dinners are at my Mummy's 'restaurant'...I think I might just come again..." | One big change which came into your life during your second year which can't be seen in photos was learning to talk. You'd said a tiny handful of babyish words in your first year, but that was about it. As you got to 18 months, still with only 20 words in your vocabulary (most of which seemed to be animal noises such as moo, baa and woof), we started to feel concerned and asked to see a speech therapist. She confirmed you should have had about 70 words at this stage, but that every other sign, such as your attentiveness, seemed positive. It just so happened that in the week of our speech therapy appointment, you'd suddenly started to add 1-2 new words per day. After the appointment, without us doing anything the therapist had told us (as it sounded like rubbish anyway!), you started adding 3-4 words, and before long, a mere 6 new words was a "bad" day. Mummy was recording all your words, to be able to tell the therapist at the next appointment...she stopped recording and cancelled the appointment when you moved from 20 words to 250 in the space of a month! As with walking, it seemed that you needed first to reach the conclusion that you could really, truly do it, and then whoosh - off you'd go at a rapid rate! Once you started talking, that was it, you absolutely raced ahead and continually impressed us all with your fantastic new language skills.
79: . | Just hangin' out in my backyard... | Whether it was playing with your ball, or looking at the pretty flowers, making big messes in the sandpit (and filling your favourite Wiggles gumboots with sand!), playing in and around the cubby house, or just hanging out with Mummy or Daddy, the backyard offered endless hours of fascinating fun for you.
80: We'd been able to get some free tickets to the Circus Joseph Ashton, which set up in what was then an unused space on North Lake Road in Cockburn Central (it's apartment buildings now), and set off with high hopes for a fun afternoon. You did watch a bit of the show, but got upset after a short time and we ended up having to leave before it was finished (we were glad our tickets were free!).
81: At the Circus | Trapeze artists - clowns - performing ponies - trained dogs... there are so many exciting things to see!
82: Family Day Out at Penguin Island We wanted to go somewhere a bit different for a family day out, and decided it would be nice to go to Penguin Island. We drove down to Rockingham, hopped on a ferry and soon, we were seeing all the cute little fairy penguins in the special penguin centre. We took a long walk up the boardwalks, and saw lots of pelicans and lizards, and then went back to the picnic area for lunch. We played on the beach, where you chased seagulls, and fell in the water...good thing we brought some dry clothes! Then we finished the day off with an ice cream back at the café where the ferry docks back on the mainland.
83: Josh and Daddy may do the lawn mowing and wood working jobs together, but it's Josh and Mummy who do the gardening. You love to have your own little garden and watch your flowers or vegies grow. | Daddy's Little Helper | You love to help Daddy out with whatever he's doing. Daddy will be pretty happy when you are big enough to take over doing the lawn mowing!
85: When you had an eye infection, you kept trying to do the medicine all by yourself! | You had hair from the day you were born, but you never seemed to have very much of it, so although some of your friends had had multiple haircuts before they were one, you were 21 months old before your first haircut. Daddy's cousin Jodie did your haircut at her salon, and put some "product" in your hair when it was finished...you thought you looked like a pretty cool little dude! | At least you also eat plenty of fruit and veg. In fact, I had to keep a really close eye on you in the shop, or you would keep picking up vegetables and biting into them, and I'd then have to pay for what you ate! If a capsicum is on the kitchen bench, waiting to be put in the fridge, we have to watch out or you munch into it! | Oh no. The chocolate monster is at it again. How do you manage to get it all over your face like that? You think it's hilariously funny to see your filthy face in the mirror. You also make pretty good messes with ice cream - on this occasion, mango gelato from Mummy & Daddy's shop.
86: We decided you were old enough to enjoy a day at the Perth Royal Show. Given how much you love animals, we knew there would be plenty of things for you to get excited about! | You were really thrilled by all the animals you saw. Patting a pig and a duck were real highlights...almost as exciting as seeing the rubbish truck come earlier that morning! (You absolutely loved seeing the rubbish truck come each week at this age!) | Perth Royal Show | Baa
87: You were a little nervous about the pony ride, but once you were up and moving, you thought you were just the bee's knees! You did hold Mummy's hand very tight, though. | It's no wonder you had a bit of a catnap in the pusher ...what a big day! It was a big day for Mummy too. Mummy had surgery on her back in May, and this was the biggest test yet - 6 hours walking round at the Show, and Mummy's back was fine, hooray! | Moo
88: After all the fun things you'd seen and done, what was the number one thing you told Grandad when he asked what you'd seen today? Not the pony or the chickens...but Uncle Mike Fawcett, who we bumped into in the dairy pavilion! You enjoyed tasting all kinds of foods that we sampled as we worked our way around the Show. You even got to go on the "teacup" ride. | You absolutely loved this balloon dog, even if you did get ice cream on it! | The smile says it all ...one very happy and contented boy!
89: Some toy stores have a train table like this set up in store as a demonstration. Given that whenever we came across one of these with all the Thomas the Tank Engine toys on it, we could hardly drag you away, we didn't have to think twice about what to buy for your birthday! Daddy decided to make your train table himself, and he did a fantastic job. Mummy and Daddy painted the blue paint of the table frame together, then Mummy did all the fancy paintwork on top. Finally, Mummy and Daddy placed the stickers and then gave the finished product a coat of varnish. We had to work a lot of late nights when you were in bed, and take care to hide it from you along the way, but all the work was definitely worth it! We set it up inside the night before your birthday (we had lots of fun constructing the tracks!), and the look on your face made all the hard work totally worthwhile! You absolutely loved your present, and you played and played and played with it...about the only time you weren't playing with it was when you were unwrapping other presents! | 2nd Birthday
90: You've really started to discover that birthdays are great. You had a big grin on your face pretty much all day. The train tracks you got were the beginning of big adventures in construction skills. | Grandma and Grandad gave you your first remote control car. You were pretty excited, and started to get the hang of some of the necessary skills to make it go. | Look at me... I'm a big boy now! You've changed so much since the day you came into our lives two years ago. Gone is our little baby, and now you're a real little boy. You're growing up so fast and discovering new things all the time. You are talking really well by now, and of course, you run around everywhere with such confidence. We are so proud of our Joshie boy! | A few weeks before your birthday, we were at a toy shop, and you played with the Thomas trains there. All the while you were playing, you were muttering, "Happy boy! Happy boy!" So we knew that the train table, tracks and box of engines and carriages was going to be a bit thrill for you.
91: "Who says you need to be 17 to get your licence? I found one in the Weetbix packet just this morning, and hey look - my very first set of wheels! I am now the coolest 2 year old in the cul-de-sac! I'm just going to take my friend Bengal the Tiger and off we go!" The car was a gift from Grandma & Grandad Jack Doggie. A few months later, you were driving round the cul-de-sac with Daddy watching. You started to go down the road, and Daddy asked where you were going. "Going to shops," you replied. Daddy asked what you were going to get. "Going to buy sausages, milk. OK, be back soon!" Ahhh...the joys of independent transport!
92: Grandma & Grandad Jack Doggie came and shared dinner with us for your birthday. | They brought you a special Thomas the Tank Engine cake, which you thought was pretty cool. | Happy birthday to you, Happy birthday to you, Happy birthday dear Joshie, Happy birthday to you! | By this stage, you're really starting to get the hang of all the good things about birthdays, including singing the birthday song and blowing out the candles...and of course, balloons - even if you can't fathom how to blow them up!
93: As usual, Grandma Bandie Doggie made you an awesome cake. You thought the Thomas theme was pretty fantastic We held your party in the park on Goodwill Avenue in Atwell, under the big pavilion. Lachie and Jack were there, and family such as Uncle Dave and Aunty Verna, and a group of friends from church. | You and all the other kids had a great time playing on the playground together. You had some lovely presents, and really enjoyed your day.
94: You love doing all kinds of art and craft. You made some pretty cool finger painting masterpieces! | Mummy thinks it's great that you love to help...except when more water ends up on the floor than in the sink! You seem to think the purpose of getting dishes out of the rinse sink is to put more water in them again! You also love to help look after your pets. Even at this age, you would often be the first to notice the dogs' water needs refilling, and you would dash off to try to do it yourself...often resulting in water everywhere! Your constant efforts to feed Iggy, our budgie, also resulted in lots of mess - seed everywhere! We were so proud of how responsible and caring you had become. | At Lachie's birthday party, with Jack in the background. You all had fun in the pool! | Showing the folks at the Army Museum just how a really top driver does it - even if he can't reach the pedals! | THIRD YEAR
95: We went to a community fair in Baldivis, where Grandma Jack Doggie had a craft stall, and this was the first time you had your face painted. You looked pretty cool as a bunny! | Your version of the alphabet song at this stage of life is a little hit and miss: "A B C D E...mumble, mumble, mumble, double X Y Z." You climbed on the kitchen bench one day. Mummy overheard you saying, "Joshie won't fall down like Humpty." For a while, you were convinced that the purpose of coffee was to cure coughs. Daddy walked past with a cup of coffee, and you trailed after him, doing fake coughs, trying to convince him to give you some of his beverage! You were a two year old car salesman! When Mummy's car was up for sale, and some prospective buyers came to check it out, you advised them, "That's Mummy's grey car. It's very special." One afternoon, you rushed in from the garden yelling in terror, "'Nake! 'Nake!" The "snake" turned out to be a snail! Any garden creature you didn't like was classified by you as a snake. | Say...what's up, Doc? | Classic Josh moments & sayings... | At this age, you would often do DIY discipline! If we told you off, you would often voluntarily take yourself into time out in your bedroom! You figure that if you have to do time out when you're naughty, so do the dogs! Tasha stole your toast one day, and you yelled, "Tassa! Go do time out!" | On another occasion, you locked Toby behind your baby gate because you thought he needed to do time out! You were told to apologise. "Sorry Tobe, didn't mean do that in there."
96: Wiggles Concert Burswood Dome 28 November 2010 | Lights, Camera, Action! | The Big Red Car is always a hit. The Wiggles did some amazing aerial routines in their concert. Captain Feathersword came right up the aisle where we were sitting, collecting roses for Dorothy the Dinosaur.
97: You were briefly awestruck when you saw your musical heroes on the stage, but in a very short time, you got right into the songs, and you were singing and dancing away in your seat. Partway through the concert, you went up to the front alongside the stage with a bunch of other kids, where there was a clear space to be able to dance along more freely. You had an absolutely fantastic day. | "Can you point your fingers And do the twist? Well, we're gonna go up And go down Get back up and turn around Can you point your fingers And do the twist?"
98: The Belltower is one of those landmarks that tourists visit, but which locals tend to drive past without giving it a second thought. The price certainly puts people off just making a casual visit. However, when the 10th anniversary of the Swan Bells came around, there were some days when entry was free, so we decided to go and have a look. You were completely enthralled by the bells and their different tones, and watching them swing up and down. We spent ages in the viewing gallery, speculating on which one would swing next. Mummy got to swing one of the bells...it's harder than it looks! Some of the bells come from the English church of St Martin in the Fields...you have a distant family connection with them, having ancestors who were married in that church a very long time ago! | Swan Bells
99: Mummy's Number 1 Tree Decorating Assistant! You had an absolute ball helping to decorate the tree. You liked to hang the baubles on the lower branches all by yourself. | Also Mummy's Number 1 Baking Assistant! Your personal specialty was, of course, licking the spoon! Your efforts to help in other regards were sometimes a bit frustrating! Once, you ate a handful of raw flour - the horrified look on our face was priceless! On another occasion, you upended the mixed spice into the cake mix - fortunately, Mummy was able to spoon most of it out again! As Mummy's assistant chef, you've spilled things, put things in at the wrong time, had your fingers in absolutely everything and eaten all kinds of raw ingredients...and you've always had a great time doing it!
100: You helped Grandma Jack Doggie decorate the beautiful gingerbread house. You were pretty proud of your efforts! | At church, you wore a shepherd's costume for the nativity play, complete with your friend Lambie to add some authenticity! You were starting to understand the Christmas story and loved reading nativity picture books. You "read" one of the books to Mummy one night: Josh: It's angel. It's Mary. Mummy: What did the angel say? Josh: Have baby boy. (Next page) Mary riding on donkey. Mummy: Where are they going? Josh: Going Befahem.
101: One of your favourite Christmas time treats is looking at houses decorated with Christmas lights. Quite a lot of houses in Atwell tend to decorate, so driving round the streets near to home provided lots of joy. The best street of all is Kennack Vista, where almost all the houses in one end of the street have lights. They raise funds for PMH, so Stitches the Bear sometimes visits...you kept hugging him! You would run from house to house, stopping to dance when you heard Christmas music playing. At two, any child you see is instantly your friend, so you would often find kids to play with. We went many times, because you loved it so much.
102: "You better watch out You better not cry Better not pout I'm telling you why Santa Claus is coming to town. He's making a list, Checking it twice, Gonna find out who's naughty and nice, Santa Claus is coming to town. He sees you when you're sleeping, He knows when you're awake, He knows if you've been bad or good, So be good for goodness' sake." | A fruit mince pie and a glass of iced coffee for Santa Claus before you head off to bed on Christmas Eve...sleep tight! Oh, is that Santa's sleigh bells I hear jingling? You'd better get to sleep or he might not come!
103: Wow...it's CHRISTMAS!!! This year, you really "get" Christmas so much more than in previous years. You were so excited about all the presents under the tree. You got a lot of use out of the playdough set (you made Mummy and Daddy lots of delicious pizzas, doughnuts and other snacks) and the art set.
104: First visit to AQWA Aunty Jane often comes to Perth to visit her family at Christmas time, and we almost always have a catch-up on Boxing Day. Most of the time, Aunty Jane just comes to our place for lunch, but this year, the forecast was for such a hot day that we decided to find an activity where there'd be great air conditioning! We thought a trip to the Aquarium of WA would be a great treat for you. You loved seeing all the different kinds of fish, and even being able to touch a few in the touch pool.
105: "Umm...I dunno who trashed my room. Maybe it was Toby. Yeah, that must be it!" For a while, whenever you were supposed to be having a sleep, you'd make a total mess of your bedroom. The worst mess was the day you smeared nappy rash cream all over the side of your chest of drawers and a few other things...Mummy was not amused! | Oh dear. You could also make some pretty good messes of yourself! This was one of a number of occasions when you decided to DIY with the baby powder. | This is one of your wonderful playdough pizza creations. You and Mummy would have a lovely time working out what was going on top of the pizza - the playdough set included little shapes you could press out for things like mushrooms, capsicum and so on, and then you would smother the result with yellow "cheese." | Mess Machine!
106: Junior Masterchef! Beating the eggs...mashing the bananas (hmmm...that sounds like a Wiggles song!)...sorting the pecans...putting in a dash of cinnamon...you're a great helper in the kitchen! And you're also a dab hand at eating the proceeds, too.
107: Kicking the ball...or learning the goosestep?! | The sponges in your art set made some pretty spectacular masterpieces possible. This beautiful bird was a real favourite craft. | This covered slide at the park on Harvest Lakes Blvd & Goodwill Ave in Atwell was a particular favourite. You went through a funny phase where you were really confident to climb anything and everything, no matter how scary it looked, but when you arrived at the nice, safe platform at the top, you would freak out and be too frightened to stand up! It really didn't make any sense at all! | Summer Days
108: Keeping Cool in Summer | Absolutely, definitely THE coolest place on a hot summer day is in the paddle pool!
109: #1 Helper Boy "I can help Grandma wash Mummy's car!" | My Family Four generations of your family - you, Mummy, Grandma Bandie Doggie (Grandad took the photo), Grandad's sister Aunty Anne and Uncle Michael, and your Great-Gran. Aunty Anne and Uncle Michael were visiting from England. They gave you Diggy Dog as a gift. | "I'm the king of the castle!" | "Bessie Chicken" was a very temporary addition to our lives. Daddy was backing the car out of the drive one afternoon, and called us to come and see - there was a chicken running round in our next-door-neighbour's front yard! We knew for sure that they did not have chickens. Mummy didn't want to leave the chicken, in case it got hit by a car, so she caught it with her bare hands! We put the chicken out the back, behind the gated-off section where Toby and Tasha could not get to it, until we could find out where Bessie came from. You called her "Bessie Icken," because you couldn't say "ch." We got her some chicken food and gave her some water...and next afternoon, she flew over the fence while we were out! We discovered she belonged to some other neighbours. You were so sad that Bessie left! She was only with us for a day, but she found a place in your heart.
110: Kings Park What happy smiles. In the picture on the left, you are holding an acorn. Since this day,we've had trouble convincing you that gumnuts are gumnuts and not acorns! It's not easy to see, but the people behind you in the centre picture are Mummy's cousin Lizzie, Uncle Michael and Grandad Bandie Doggie.
111: Colin Buchanan Concert Colin Buchanan is Australia's favourite Christian kids' entertainer. You had watched his "King of Christmas" DVD many times before this event, and we borrowed another DVD from friends at church, so you knew quite a lot of his songs already. Colin is always a bit crazy and heaps of fun. You enjoyed the concert, even if you did think the music was a little loud! There was a sausage sizzle on the lawn afterward, and we bought a DVD of "10-9-8 God is Great," which Colin signed with a special message just for you.
112: Beautiful sunny day at the jetty near Bicton Quarantine Park and the Water Polo Centre. You were really fascinated by the big brown jellyfish swimming in the river.
113: Oh dear. Why is chocolate the only food that never seems to make it into your mouth? | This was the day you just about gave everyone a heart attack. We often go to Mandurah around Easter time, to catch up with Aunty Lyn, Uncle Bev and their family. You especially like spending time with your cousins, Matt and Chad. Mummy took you for a walk along the river. You were enjoying wading in the water. You met some other kids to play with. One of them had a foam "noodle," which you sat on. The waves then took your feet from under you, floated you back a few metres away from shore, and you fell into the water. While Mummy stood there in shock, a man nearby leapt into the water and rescued you. You had swallowed quite a bit of water, and had had a nasty shock, but were otherwise okay. You seemed to quite enjoyed the celebrity of the moment, telling everyone back at the picnic over and over again, "Joshie had a big fright!" | Get the right score, and you win a great prize, if you drop the Cheezels into this clown's mouth! | You were forever pulling the drawers out of this bedside table. You thought you were a dog, sitting in there like it was your kennel.
114: By this stage, you are really starting to get excited about celebrating other people's birthdays, not just your own. It's Daddy's birthday in these photos, and you helped sing the birthday song and blow out the candles. Because you get so excited about it, we had to go through it twice! | b | Because both sets of your grandparents chose to be called "Grandma and Grandad," we needed some way to be able to distinguish which is which when speaking about them. You solved the problem by naming them after their dogs - Grandma and Grandad Bandie Doggie (Rotherham), and Grandma and Grandad Jack Doggie (Speedie)! | Daddy's birthday
115: Here you are, with Mr Bun, as usual. Only a few days after these photos were taken, the direst calamity imaginable overtook us - you lost Mr Bun at Kardinya shops! We went back and looked everywhere we'd been, and then reported his loss to centre management. We went back at least once, and phoned several times...still no Mr Bun. You were inconsolable. I don't know how much time we spent cuddling you while you cried for your Bunny. Miraculously, a few weeks later, the postman brought Mr Bun back in a parcel. You were the happiest boy on earth! But the pain of losing him for those weeks stuck with you for a long time. Months later, Mummy would see you looking sad, and when she asked why, you would say, "Mr Bun got wost" (you couldn't pronounce L). Mummy would remind you about his return. You'd say, "Yes! He camed back!" and your face would break into the hugest grin. | The trams are one of the cool attractions at Whiteman Park, and you, Grandma and Grandad had fun taking a ride. | Whiteman Park Another annual family event is the picnic at Whiteman Park, usually around Anzac Day, but it was a little later on this occasion. We catch up with family on Grandma Bandie Doggie's side, like Uncle Ed, Aunty Denise, Channan and your cousin Alex, as well as Dossie, Val, Brian and others. We always have a nice BBQ lunch under the gazebo - we usually book the same one every year, near the Motor Museum.
116: San Churros... your favourite place for afternoon tea! Dipping the churros in the chocolate is definitely a culinary activity which rates highly with you! The computer photo below reminds us of a day you gave us a fright. We couldn't find you anywhere in the house or garden. We even asked the kids playing in the street if they'd seen you. We were so worried. Then Daddy realised he hadn't locked the office...and there you were, downloading updates from iTunes!!! | Grandma and Grandad Jack Doggie got you this Thomas the Tank Engine bike. You really enjoyed learning to ride a "big boy bike." Mummy and Daddy were glad it had a handle, to keep control of you! | You are forever breaking into Daddy's office, trying to get on Oovoo to speak to your cousin Clayton in America! | At Aunty Debra, Jessica, Amy & Rebecca's place, trying to ride a trike and a scooter all at the same time! | You've got a lot of growing to do before your feet are even remotely the size of Aaron Sandilands' big flippers!
117: "Can I wick it, Mummy? Pwease oh pwease? Fanks!"
118: You loved this special parking garage from Mummy and Daddy. You spent almost all day racing cars down the ramps, winding the lift inside up and down with cars on, and parking your cars in the garages. It was a big hit! | The Thomas the Tank engine set you got at your last birthday is still a favourite and much-loved toy, and new Thomas bits and pieces are always very welcome...this level crossing was a great new addition, a gift from Grandma and Grandad Jack Doggie.. | And now you're 3!
119: Now, that's a big boy set of wheels! "Thanks, Grandma and Grandad Bandie Doggie...my very own scooter!" You had a lot of fun, scooting up and down the road. You had a special lunch out with Daddy and Grandma and Grandad Jack Doggie (Mummy was at work) at Cully's Tea Shop, just round the corner. You declared, "This is the best birthday party EVER!" Mummy came over to Grandma and Grandad Jack Doggie's house straight after work, and a bit later, Grandma and Grandad Bandie Doggie joined us there too, and gave you your scooter.
120: We had a lovely dinner with both sets of grandparents, Mummy, Daddy and you...birthday party number 2! As usual, you got right into singing the birthday song and blowing out the candles. You thought the red rose on the cake was really special!
121: We had planned to have your party at Bibra Lake, but the weather wasn't too good, so we had to re-locate it to Grandma Jack Doggie's place at the last minute. We were sneaky, and didn't tell you about the party. Daddy took you to Jungle Sports in the morning, and then brought you straight to the party. You saw the cars lined up, caught sight of one or two of your friends, realised it was a party and said, "Wow...another party...now I am 4!" Later in life, you'll be happy that extra celebrations do not add extra years to your age! Uncle Dave and Aunty Verna gave you the Elmo guitar, and Aunty Ailsa your aircraft carrier. Grandma Bandie Doggie made you the best birthday cake yet - this beautiful Little Charlie Bear cake. It looked so much like the real Charlie Bear from your favourite TV show. | Party Party Party!
122: We got to sing the birthday song again! You were happy to share your lovely cake with all your special friends. A couple of weeks after your party, we moved house, to 7 Ethelwyn St, Hilton...right across the road from Grandma and Grandad Jack Doggie. You were pretty happy to be living so close to them. | You had plenty of special friends and family at the party, including Sally, Lachie & Jack, Liz, Andrea, Fletcher & Charlee, Cathy & Edele, Olivia & Dylan, Aunty Debra, Jessica, Amy & Rebecca, Lynne, Tony & little Matty, your grandparents, Aunty Ailsa, Uncle Dave and Aunty Verna. Wow...popular boy!
123: "Clayton is my cousin!" Even though you and Clayton, who lives in America, had only ever "met" on webcam, you were both always very conscious of each other and seemed to really love one another. You will even tell people at the checkout in the shops that Clayton is your cousin! You two are only about 5 weeks apart in age. You were so excited to learn that Brooke, Phillip and Clayton were coming to visit. You were making grand plans for weeks and weeks about things the two of you would do together. At the airport, the moment the two of you clapped eyes on each other, you ran to each other and hugged until you fell over! You then held hands all the way out of the airport. You had lots of fun together, like this day out at AQWA & Sorrento Quay. The two of you were absolutely inseparable the whole time Clayton was visiting. If you weren't together, you were talking about one another! | 4 th YEAR
124: The two of you loved visiting AQWA, and seeing all the beautiful and unusual marine life. Daddy took some pretty spectacular photos too!
125: The touch pool is a favourite of all kids at AQWA. You can touch starfish, little Port Jackson sharks, rays and other underwater creatures, as long as you keep them under the water. | Enjoying a ride with together after your AQWA visit. | Mettam'sTouch Pool @ AQWA
126: "We're going to the zoo, zoo, zoo, How about you, you, you? You can come too, too, too, We're going to the zoo, zoo, zoo!"
128: "See the elephant with the long trunk swingin', Great big ears and long trunk swingin', Snuffin' up peanuts with the long trunk swingin', We can stay all day See all the monkeys scritch, scritch, scratchin', Jumpin' all around and scritch, scritch, scratchin', Hangin' by their long tails scritch, scritch, scratchin', We can stay all day"
129: We saved the zoo trip for a day when Mummy wasn't at work. Mummy LOVES the zoo! It was interesting to see how much more you were able to enjoy this visit, compared to when you were a baby. You love animals of all kinds. | Even at the zoo, trust you and Clayton to find a playground! You both had a lovely day together.
130: The boat cruise around the Mandurah Canals is one of our favourite excursions to take visitors on, mainly because you are almost guaranteed to see wild dolphins. | Mandurah Canals Boat Cruise | We had a fun day, including lunch at Cicerellos in Mandurah. The dolphins were your favourite part of the day though.
131: Things that I love... ....my Mummy and Daddy... ...my cousin Clayton... ...and churros and chocolate dipping sauce at San Churros! The heart sculpture is located on the boardwalk , near the Mandurah Visitors' Centre, just near where you hop on the boat for the canal cruise.
132: Whenever there are visitors from overseas, it seems that Mummy and Daddy always get the task of showing them round the Swan Valley, so we are pretty much experts at this job by now! We knew Clayton would love to see lots of Australian animals (and that you'd be just as happy about this!), and the best place in Perth to do that is Caversham Wildlife Park, in the Swan Valley. You were a bit shy about the wombat to begin with, but discovered she wasn't really all that scary.
133: A day in the Valley just isn't complete without a trip to the Swan Valley outlet of the Margaret River Chocolate Factory! You were both fascinated at seeing the chocolates made...and you both ate plenty of the free samples too! | The walk-through section where you can feed the kangaroos is one of the best parts of the park. The kangaroos are very tame and used to people big and small coming close to them, feeding and patting them. Caversham has a number of rare albino kangaroos, as well as the standard red and grey types. You and Clayton both got a thrill out of feeding the kangaroos. | Doesn't matter where you take two three year olds...they'll always manage to find one of those rides you have to stick $2 in somewhere! The three weeks when Clayton, Brooke and Phillip were here were so much fun for you. You were so sad when Clayton went home to the US. You really missed your cousin.
134: Mummy started work as a school chaplain in Term 4, 2011. The above photo was taken when Mummy accepted her commissioning certificate as a YouthCARE chaplain. Most unusually, you fell asleep in Mummy's arms shortly after arriving. Mummy had to juggle a heavy, sleepy boy and shaking hands and receiving the certificate when the time came! As the service drew to a close, the announcement was made that there would be afternoon tea to follow. Your head suddenly popped up and you exclaimed loudly, "Afternoon tea!" Everyone there folded up with laughter. | More Josh-isms... You said, "Pingu jumps on beds, and he slides on the snow, and Wibbley (Pig) too...Pingu slides on a...a sliding thingie." Mummy replied, "On a sled." You responded sadly, "Yes, that's right, he slides on a sled...I don't have any snow. I don't have a sled. I only got a bike and some cars!" One night, when you should have been asleep, Mummy found Tasha on your bed, and you were "reading" her a story. Very appropriately, you chose Spot the Dog! You tried to phone the ABC one day after losing the guessing contest about which window Playschool would look through to Mummy. How unfair it was that they looked through the diamond window, rather than the round one! Mummy told you off one day for running into the church car park, and asked, "What if a car had hit you?" You said, sadly, "There would be noooooo more Joshie. We have to get a new Joshie." Trying not to laugh, Mummy asked, "Oh? Where will we get one?" You immediately replied, "At the shops!" You, Mummy and Grandma Bandie Doggie were out one day. Mummy and Grandma were discussing whether to turn left or right. With all the panache of the star in a spy movie, you declared, "Follow that car!" The only problem was, there was no car to follow! We transferred to East Fremantle Baptist Church during the year. On our first visit, we went down the front for the children's story. The person doing the story said, "Now, let's pray." You yelled out, "SURPRISE!" Quite a way to make an impact on our first visit. On another occasion, you refused to sit at the front during the story. The story was all about friendship. A family with a daughter about 6-8 years old came in late, and had to put out some extra seats. You jumped up and grabbed a kiddie chair, saying, "I will get that girl a chair!" You may not have listened to the story, but you deserved an A+ for practical application. You learned an old kids' praise song which goes, "Joy is the flag flown high from the castle of my heart, when the King is in residence there," from Mummy. Soon after, you and Clayton went to King's Park - you concluded that's where the king lives. When Mummy came home from work, Daddy asked you who lives at King's Park. You replied, "Jesus!" Late that night, you prayed, "And Jesus, when you take off your king clothes, you wear a T-shirt just like me!" A classic misunderstanding: You had been thinking about your mate, Lachie and his little brother, Jack. You were worrying about what Jack might do to your toys, "because he's just a baby!" (He was nearly two.) Mummy said, "Jack's just little, sometimes you've just got to cut him some slack." You paused, looking puzzled. "Yeah....I can cut him some snacks." A conversation in the car one day went like this. Mummy told you, "We're going to Bunnings." You responded, "To buy some dust." We were confused, so you explained, "To grow the plants." Mummy replied, "Ah, yes! Some soil, we're going to buy some soil!" (Potting mix, actually.) You then affirmed, "Yes, some soil. It looks like cocoa." Perhaps...but not so tasty!
135: Christmas Time Again | East Fremantle Baptist held a special children's service a couple of weeks before Christmas. Grandma Bandie Doggie made you a cute shepherd's costume, which looked great. Mummy and Daddy were proud of you. After the service, there was a baby animal farm outside, which you thought was great. | How to get a three year old to sleep: (1) Send him to Jungle Soccer in the morning. (2) Take him to the cricket club's family session at Tropical Twist (indoor play centre) for two hours of non-stop running, sliding and playing. (3) Let him play with the neighbours' kids for half an hour or so, riding trikes up and down the driveway. (4) Take him to the cricket club Christmas party, let him run round with the other kids on the hockey grounds for ages, and get a present from Santa and all that stuff... (5) Put him in the car to go home...bingo, sleeping child! | When the Tour de France was on, earlier in the year, you saw Cadel Evans racing a number of times, and like the rest of Australia, you were so happy when he became the first Australian to win. With your helmet and sunnies on, you reckon you look just like Cadel! You and Mummy have had lots of good walks/rides around the neighbourhood.
136: Wow...guess what Santa Claus brought you for Christmas?! When you woke up on Christmas morning, Mummy and Daddy asked you to come outside to see what Santa had left for you. You were so excited to have your very own trampoline at last! Sometimes, if you hear Jayden and Adelia next door on their trampoline, you climb onto yours and have bouncing-up-and-down conversations over the fence. You always want Mummy or Daddy to come and bounce with you too!
137: You were very excited about preparing for Christmas, especially as you received a special, personal video message from Santa this year. You watched it over and over! Grandma and Grandad Jack Doggie were in America again this Christmas, but they left presents for you to open at Christmas. Presents included a new roundhouse and turntable for your train set, some cars and a new backpack. We had a delicious Christmas lunch with Grandma and Grandad Bandie Doggie. We did all the things we always love to do at Christmas, including finding sixpences in our Christmas pudding, popping the Christmas crackers, wearing the silly party hats and telling the terrible jokes.
138: We baked lots of biscuits as Christmas gifts. When Mummy suggested making a few batches of banana and chocolate muffins as well, you nodded and said, "Yes, so I don't steal any more biscuits!" | One of your favourite activities is going to the netball courts with Daddy to play with your remote control car. | We had a really hot summer, and this house holds the heat terribly. The best relief from the heat turned out to be a $25 paddle pool out in the backyard, under a canvas gazebo. Mummy, Daddy and you all cooled off together to beat the heat. | You are growing up to be such a kind and caring boy, who has a lot of empathy for others' feelings. When your cousins Matt and Chad lost their grandma, it was your idea to make a special card for them to help them feel better. Mummy wrote what you wanted to say in the card. We were so proud of you for your kindness. | "Will someone please, please, PLEASE come and bounce on the trampoline with me? Pretty please with a cherry on top!"
139: . | Getting you to sleep in your own bed can be a tricky job! Sometimes, you fall asleep in the car, or occasionally in your green chair. You also went through a phase where we kept finding you asleep in the dog beds (Toby and Tasha sleep in your room). One morning, you came into Mummy and Daddy's bedroom, still a bit dozy, and you fell back off to sleep in our bed! | Apprentice Mechanic One day, you and Daddy went to play remote control cars at the netball courts. When you got in the car to come home, it wouldn't start. Daddy needed a new battery. Luckily for Daddy, he had his apprentice mechanic to help out, complete with a T-shirt with tools on it! You tried to help Daddy with the spanner, but worried that, "I don't know where to spann"! Guess that must be the correct verb for "to use a spanner"!
140: At the "Dinosaur Park" This is one of your favourite parks. It's less than 5 minutes away by car, on Carrington St in Palmyra. What makes it unusual is the cool dinosaurs, which you love to climb on. | More "Josh-isms" Mummy said, "That was very good grammar." You replied, "I'm not Grandma!" Do you have management potential? Mummy asked you how you were going with tidying up your room. You said, "It was e-e-easy. I just gave the books to Daddy." "My potato and my drink are having a race to my tummy." Mummy was telling Daddy about a news report about Lachie's dad, a policeman whose ankle was broken when making an arrest. You said, "It's Jack and Lachie's dad." Mummy replied, "Yes, it's in the newspaper," and you corrected, "No, he's in hospital."
141: Celebrate Leeming Community Festival | Uncle Mike and Aunty Jan moved to a new church too, Leeming Uniting. The church was involved in the Celebrate Leeming festival, which included an open-air church service and some kids' activities. After the service, we wandered round various stalls and you joined in some activities. You made a "clucky chicken" craft at the church's stall, went on a sort of carousel ride, had a great time on the bouncy castle, and had a lovely time with the baby animal farm. You especially loved being able to feed a carrot to a guinea pig.
142: We had the usual family gathering at Mandurah at Easter time. You tried to have a ride on Chad's bike, and you had lots of fun playing soccer with him and some other boys. You made everyone smile, going round with a cane basket, offering everyone Easter eggs and wishing them all a "Happy Easter." | Aunty Melody and Uncle Michael moved back to Perth from Hong Kong in the later part of 2011. Matthias and you hit it off straight away - instant friends! You two have had some fun together - you've been to dim sum, enjoyed the exhibits at Scitech, had a pizza party with Clayton and been to each other's birthday parties. Matthias's baby sister, Meagan, arrived less than 2 weeks before your 4th birthday and you can't wait to meet her!
144: Can you climb up the big mountain, Little Charley Bear? | We went down to Port Beach one afternoon in late April, because Daddy wanted to see if he could get some good shots of a US aircraft carrier, the USS Carl Vinson, which had been anchored off Fremantle. You loved the chance to run around on the beach, look for more shells to add to your collection, build sandcastles, chase seagulls and play games with Mummy. It was getting late by the time we came home, so we stopped off on the way home to pick up one of your favourite meals - fish and chips.
146: Grandma and Grandad Jack Doggie took you to the Aviation Museum at Bull Creek one afternoon. You had a lot of fun...and what's that? Did they give you your pilot's licence while you were there?! | You love stories! You and Mummy read together every night (except occasionally if Mummy is out at a meeting, when Daddy or Grandma reads to you). Some of your favourites include Paddington Bear, Mr Men, Charlie and Lola, fairy tales, Bible stories, the Gruffalo and other stories by Julia Donaldson, and Muddypaws. | "Tassa is my best pet." You are absolutely over the moon if Tasha will agree to come and sit on your bed. Unfortunately, your efforts to keep her there usually convince her to run away! | We've always had problems trying to keep you under the covers at night, even when it's cold. Sometimes you sleep facing the wrong direction in your bed, or in odd places. We've found you asleep under the bed or table on some occasions, and even in the dogs' beds!
147: There is an amazing variety of bird life at Point Walter. You love birds, and you can correctly identify at least 20 different kinds, from seagulls to magpies, rainbow lorikeets to kookaburras. | Point Walter Definitely one of the most beautiful places in Perth, and only just over 5 minutes away from our home by car...we are so lucky! | "C'mon, Daddy, seesaw with me!" You and Daddy had a great time in the playground together. The digger is definitely easier to operate with Daddy's help, and the flying fox is much too far off the ground without Mummy or Daddy's help!
148: You are pretty thrilled that in this house, Toby and Tasha get to share your bedroom. Although in this picture, Tasha is in her small bed and Toby in his big one, that cheeky girl usually steals Toby's bed and makes him curl up in her little one! You love both your doggies, but Toby often upsets you by eating the food you keep on leaving in places that are at his nose-height, and by knocking the toys you always leave just where he has to walk. You love to help out with them wherever you can - feeding them, or trying to help Mummy bathing or grooming them, or holding Tasha's lead yourself when we take them for walks.
149: One of your favourite people in the world is Edele, our friend Cathy's daughter. She loves you too! When we have our Iranian friends over for Bible study, Edele often looks after you. She is so patient and kind to you, even if you bury her in toys! | Afternoon tea at San Churro's is a special treat! You love having Churros with chocolate dipping sauce, and have invented a new kind of "double dipping" - two kinds of chocolate at once! | This little Elmo toy has been a favourite ever since you were a baby. | You have a knack for falling asleep in the most uncomfortable-looking positions, and for getting the sheets and blankets into an unbelievable tangle in no time flat.
150: Now you are a big boy, you are learning new ways to play and learn. You've started to be able to draw some pretty funky people, although your favourite subject to draw is race tracks. You can also write all the numbers and quite a few letters. The basic building block towers you used to make are now becoming increasingly complex pieces of architecture. The toys you play most with these days are your Lightning McQueen cars. You conduct races and give all the commentary. Your cars have lovely polite conversations with each other too! | Why do we have to keep Daddy's office locked? It's because you are always trying to break in! You sit down at Daddy's computer, and click everything in sight, in the hopes that you will eventually find Oovoo (the webcam program we use) so you can call Clayton! You also love to sit in the office with Daddy, and watch YouTube videos of Lightning McQueen, Thomas the Tank Engine and marble runs.
151: A face full of grape tomatoes made you look like Wallace from the Wallace and Gromit movies! You get as excited about a bowl of dip and vegetables as some kids would about lollies. It's good to know you love healthy foods! And whenever we get party pies, you insist on having J for Joshua written on one, and C for Clayton on the other. We went through a phase this year when just the word "dinner" was enough to set you off on a huge tantrum. You would often push your bowl away, declaring, "YUCK! I don't LIKE it!" without even having seen what was in the bowl. Something you might have said you loved one day, you hated the next time. Mummy was just about tearing her hair out, trying to get you to eat. Then we found a Charlie and Lola book at the library, about all the things Lola refuses to eat. Charlie then starts telling her that carrots are orange twiglets from Jupiter, fish fingers are ocean sticks from the supermarket under the sea, tomatoes are moonsquirters, etc., and Lola begins to try the foods, discovering in the process that she actually really likes them. Mummy had a bright idea, and served you a lot of foods from the book one night, and insisted that they were "orange twiglets from Jupiter" and so on. You were so busy arguing that they were really carrots, that you forgot to refuse your meal! That seemed to break the deadlock and mealtimes started to be much more pleasant, with you actually choosing to eat your dinners most nights, much to Mummy's relief!
152: It's one of the greatest wishes of your life to go "camping" in your bedroom with your sleeping bag and Lightning McQueen tent. However, when we've tried, you only last in there for about half an hour before going to your real bed! | You are Mummy's #1 helper in the garden. You think that you are just the bees' knees, with your own special gardening gloves. You have your own special patch in the back garden, where you have chosen to grow flowers. A purple and mauve pansy is your particular pride and joy. One of your favourite jobs is watering all the plants with the hose. You also help Mummy out with the vegetable garden. You're excited to pick even lettuces, and you can't wait until there are more great things to eat coming out of our vegie patch. | "I can walk Tasha, all by myself!" It's probably really Tasha who walks you. But even if you fall over the lead (which seems to happen frequently!), you still keep your promise to hold on tight to the lead. You were so excited to get an invitation to Matthias' birthday party. You insisted on sitting next to him when it was time for food. When you went off to find a drink and another kid tried to sit there, Matthias refused - "That's Joshie's seat!" You are two great friends.
153: Lachie and you have been best mates forever. You have known each other since mothers' group. When you and Lachie were 15 months old, Jack came to join Sally and Matt's family too. Now that he is getting bigger, you two find it easier to play with him than before. We try to catch up every few weeks for a playdate, but it isn't easy - between three small boys, there is usually someone sick, causing a cancellation! You always have a lot of fun together.
154: Perth Royal Show, 2012 We had a really exciting trip to the show this year. As usual, you loved all the animals. You were really excited at all the different chickens in the Poultry Pavilion. You had to pat every single animal in the walk through section of the baby animal nursery, and it was a special thrill to see goat kids which were just 3 days old. You patted a pig and held a little chicken. You watched some clever sheepdogs rounding up the sheep and guiding them through a series of gates. You were nervous at first about the pony ride, but as soon as you learned its name was Otis, like the pug dog in the movie Milo and Otis, you forgot about being scared. You wanted to just keep on riding and riding! You also got to find out just how much smaller you are than the Dockers' Aaron Sandilands, the biggest man in footy.
155: You did so many fun things at the Show. We allowed you two rides in Kiddie Land, and were really proud of you when you didn't try to pressure for more, but just made your choices and stuck with them. You weren't afraid to ride without Mummy or Daddy next to you either. You chose a bouncy car ride and a helicopter ride. You also got to play the clowns in Sideshow Alley, and won the cool truck you are holding in the top left picture. We also followed the "Yellow Brick Road" of healthy food and physical activities around the Show. After seven and a half full-on hours at the Show, we hopped on the train and headed home.
156: Mummy took you to music to start with, but when she started work in late 2010, Grandma Bandie Doggie started to take you along instead. Here you are, doing "Round and round the garden, like a teddy bear" on Grandma's hand. | Mainly Music sessions usually start with a special song where you wave a scarf around. You usually insist on a blue one! The songs are lots of fun, with dancing, shakers, puppets, actions and heaps of other ways to get involved. Your absolute favourite song is "Five Little Ladybirds," and you even have your own set of ladybird finger puppets. Another favourite is the Rainbow song - you love waving the special rainbow ribbons around. "Little Red Wagon," with a mini maraca or bells, is another song you love. Sometimes you don't want to participate in some songs, but then you sing them at home later! | You have been going to Mainly Music at Holy Cross Anglican Church in Melville since you were about one year old. Mainly Music is a fun program for kids from 0-5 years old.
157: Lynne & Tony Holmes' grandson, Matty, is one of your good friends at music. Other friends you have made there include Jessica, Amy and Rebecca and Aunty Debra Gauntlett. Mainly Music is run by Revd Debbie May, assisted by a team of other ladies from the church, including Jill and Sherrie. They make Mainly Music a fun and enjoyable place to be. One of your favourite bits of music is...morning tea! After eating, you get to play with the other kids and lots of cool toys. | The bubble song is a favourite of absolutely all the kids at music. The ladies set a bubble making machine going, and you all run around with joy, trying to catch the bubbles floating around the room. When it's your birthday, everyone at Mainly Music sings you a special birthday song, and you get a little gift. Each week, you really get into singing the goodbye song!
158: You love Jungle Sports! It is one of your favourite times in the whole week. There are Jungle Sports groups in a number of places around Perth. Your group is at Samson Recreation Centre. At the end of every term, they have a dress up day. You usually go as Captain Feathersword. You get to do a really cool rotation of activities on dress-up day, and then at the end, you receive a certificate. Daddy is the main person who takes you to Jungle Sports. Grandad Jack Doggie goes sometimes, and when your class has been on a Saturday, Mummy has gone along too.
159: One term you did Jungle Soccer, but other terms, you have done Multi Sports, where you have learned skills related to a range of sports, including basketball, soccer, cricket, rugby and Aussie Rules footy. You are getting particularly good at dribbling a soccer ball.
160: Robbie, your Jungle Sports teacher, is your hero! He thinks you are pretty great too. You always want to sit right next to him when he is giving instructions. At the end of every session, you all do a special chant about how you are all Jungle Cubs, complete with a big scary roar at the end. You really get right into it all!
162: You are always really proud to receive your Jungle Sports certificate each term. | Robbie asked Daddy to take the photos for the Jungle Sports website, so you ended up in a few of the pictures. You even ended up on the flyer, with your hero Robbie!
163: Happy 4th Birthday! | Wow! How on earth did you get to be 4 already? You are really growing up, and you are no longer a baby or a toddler, but a real little boy. You were so excited about your birthday. You were thrilled with your presents from Mummy and Daddy - a marble run and marbles, gardening set and flower seeds, a book about Formula 1 driver Lewis Hamilton, and a boxed set of Herbie DVDs.
164: Your birthday fell on a Saturday, so we were able to have your party on your actual birthday. Lots of friends and family members came to celebrate with you - your grandparents, Aunty Lyn, Sue and your cousin Chad, Aunty Ailsa, Uncle Dave and Aunty Verna, Uncle Mike and Aunty Jan Fawcett, Aunty Margaret and Uncle David Varney, Sally, Lachie and Jack, Aunty Debra, Jessica, Amy and Rebecca, Uncle Michael and Matthias, Guy and Clay from church, Lynne, Tony, Michael and Susan Holmes and Matty. As usual, Grandma Bandie Doggie made you an awesome cake, this time with a car racing theme, and she also made traffic light biscuits. Grandma Jack Doggie made some of her pretty cupcakes. Mummy made cute teddy racing car chocolates, and a big spread of all kinds of yummy party food.
165: Your favourite bit of the party is always singing the birthday song and blowing out the candles...unless it's opening the presents! (That bit was pretty good too!) Matthias was right there next to you, making sure you did a good job of blowing out the candles. All you kids had a great time jumping on the trampoline. The adults just enjoyed hanging out in the shade of the gazebos. It was about 29 degrees that day, so the shade really helped keep it pleasant.
166: You are so fond of our Iranian refugee friends, but we didn't think we could fit any more people at our party. So we had a special afternoon tea party at Point Walter with Mahmood, Drew from church, Cathy, Edele, Farid and Mehdi. Farid is one of your favourite people in all the world and you two always play lots of silly, fun games together. This was a relaxing way to end your birthday! | What's a party without some fun games? All the kids joined in for a range of traditional party games, such as pin the tail on the donkey and pass the parcel. Then Mummy modified some other games to fit the car theme - instead of Duck, Duck, Goose, we played Mater, Mater Lightning, Musical Statues became Emergency Brake and What's the Time Mr Wolf became Red Light, Green Light.
167: Look how much I've grown! | Every year, we take you to Myer at Garden City for a photo with Santa. They have a lovely Santa there! It's become a family Christmas tradition.