It is amazing to me just how much you have grown over the past year and a half. It has been an incredible journey thus far watching you grow, learn, and exhibit your own unique personality. We see so much of ourselves in you, and yet you are such a unique combination of the two of us.
Your curiosity should come as no surprise as both me and your dad have always been interested in science, or the study of how things work! You have been very curious from the moment you were born. You were very alert, checking out your mom and dad, right after you were born. Within your first week of life, you had figured out how to get those silly baby mittens off your hands! When you were a month old, you decided that you were a big girl and did not need to take naps! Can you imagine how hard it was to keep you entertained ALL DAY LONG....at ONE month old!!!! At four months old you somehow managed to get out of your swing! Starting when you were a month old, we went everywhere! We went to the zoo, a farm, Sylvan (so I could work), the library, museums, trips out of town, etc. In fact, in your first 6 months of life, you visited 6 states! You have always loved to go see something new! (Well, for a while you did not like to go anywhere at night because you thought we were trying to make you go to bed, and you did not want to go to bed because you might miss something!!)
You have taught me to appreciate characteristics in myself that I did not always see the positives in. For example, I have always had a very short attention span, and at this point you seem to share that characteristic. However, what I did not realize was that we both also have very sweet dispositions. After much thinking and watching, I have concluded that when you have a short attention span, you can't help but be very good natured! Any wrong is quickly forgotten! All of the neighborhood children like to play with you! If they get mad and take a toy from you, you just shrug your shoulders and go find something else to do. Don't think though that you are a doormat, that you are NOT! If there is something you want or need, you WILL let someone know, very loudly too I might add! Two of our neighbors have commented that they can hear you crying from inside our house! The day after you were born you kept the family across the hall awake with your screaming because you were mad that my milk had not come in yet! In general, as long as you are not tired or hungry, you are a very happy and sweet child!
You are also a very friendly child! I make new friends everywhere I go because you run up and introduce yourself! Well, except at Gulfcoast Gymnastics. There I spend the entire Open Gym following you around making sure you don't walk off a "precipice!" Speaking of which, you also have no fear! Go anywhere, see anything, meet anyone, and you are just fine! (You fed the goats and cows by yourself this summer at the zoo!) However, recently you don't like to get too up close and personal with people you are unfamiliar with in an unfamiliar place. You need time to explore the place first. THEN you will get to know the people! Once you are ready to meet people though, it doesn't matter who they are or how different they are. You are just happy to be there! You are particularly enamored with babies and small children! You once met a special needs baby and thought she was just the coolest thing! I got to talk to her mom a lot that day!!
I have learned over this past year and a half that you do things in your own time and your own way. There have been a couple times that I thought "Ok, today we are going to learn to do ____!" Only to realize that no matter how determined I was, you just were not ready or at least not ready to do whatever it was in that particular way! My creativity has had to soar in order to keep up with your creativity! You currently have a very large vocabulary for a child your age, but you have absolutely no use for using that vocabulary unless absolutely necessary! You have more important things to do....like figure out how everything works! When we go to the Open Gym, you like to try and figure out how to take apart the gymnastics equipment! When we go visit Sylvan, you figure out what all the buttons on the copy machine do! Your goal in life is to go, see, and experience everything.....much like your mother!
You will eat almost anything....except hotdogs and lettuce (You are still trying to cut some of your molars!), and you love milk just like your mom and dad. You have always been a great sleeper! We think it is because you stay so busy all day long!! You actually currently sleep a little longer than a child your age is supposed to. Some of the moms in our neighborhood have asked how I get anything done during the day with you being so busy! One of the biggest challenges we have had with you has been diaper rash. You have your mother's sensitive skin and are hot natured like your father. This is not a good combination! During the summers we put you in cloth diapers because it is the only thing that keeps you from breaking out....mostly!
Your problem solving skills amaze me! That must come from your father! You also look just like your daddy! Speaking of your dad, you love to rough house with him at night! On Saturdy mornings y'all enjoy watching your absolute favorite show, Veggie Tales (You started actually watching it at 3 months old!), as well as 3-2-1 Penguins and The Zula Patrol. This year for his birthday, you insisted we get him the Larryboy and the Bad Apple video game! You had a good time playing (with an unplugged controller) with your daddy!
Your best friend is Nutmeg, our cat. You two have a wonderful time prowling through our house getting into all kinds of mischief. You both love to go play outside. However, sometimes Nutmeg gets a little aggrevated when you try to tackle him or pull his tail. You, on the other hand, think this is great fun and laugh hysterically! I love your laugh! You also like to help your mommy out around the house. You have been unloading the dishwasher since before you were a year old, and you started picking up your toys after your first birthday. You are not much of a copy cat. You like to do things in your own particular way!
You have never minded us leaving you, and you love going to Sunday School! When we left you with a sitter at 5 months old so we could go to a movie, you and the sitter were waiting for us on the front portch when we got back! We decided then that you needed babysitters who were either experienced parents or very high energy! The most common phrase we hear used to describe you is: "She is very busy!", and you are! As my dad said about me, "You are one great big ball of fun!" You also will occasionally go off on your own exploring. At the last wedding we attended, you crawled off to the kitchen during the reception! One of the ladies in the kitchen found you and brought you back!
You currently believe that you must pray after reading any kind of book but that you should not pray before a meal! You also like to sit on the potty to read books but not much of anything else! Since you were a year old if you broke one of the 3 house rules, you went to time out. Thankfully it has been very effective for you because nothing else seems to work! You absolutely love Mr. Clarence and Ms. Tammy at church and Ms. Liza and Christa and Ms. Kami and River down the street! You are only one and a half, and you have already been invited to 3 birthday parties! You love to read books but seem to prefer big books as opposed to board books. You also love to play dress up! Once you dressed yourself in a red bandana and then wanted to go visiting across the street, which we did! You also love to dig in the dirt. One time I picked you up to go home from digging at Ms. Liza's, and you screamed bloody murder! You love to swim and can swim several feet by yourself! Your favorite toy at the moment is Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head. You love taking them apart and putting their parts back in all sorts of interesting places! You also like to wear Mrs. Potato Head's earrings and glasses. Sometimes you put Mrs. Potato Head's mouth in my mouth!
You are a very sweet, fun, energetic, and curious little girl! We think you are fantastic and love you very much!! We enjoy getting to be your guides to adulthood! (Well, unless we are tired or hungry, and then we are cranky too!)
You are my sunshine. My only Sunshine. You make me happy when skies are gray. You'll never know dear, how much I love you...