On this day 4 years ago, we officially started waiting for your arrival. Little bits of labor here and there told us you were coming soon, but it would be another 3 full days before you decided to make an entrance into our world. Four years have passed in the blink of an eye, but none perhaps faster (or slower) than this last year. Your birthday this coming weekend signals a fresh start for all of us as we emerge from what will forever in my mind be known as The Winter of Our Discontent.
We've been through a LOT....garage fire, TWO new schools (because the first one was awful), a new baby, a flood...and those are just the really big things. Have I mentioned before how amazing you've been through it all? Because I just can't get over it. You have shown extreme adaptability and grace far beyond your few years. You've been exceedingly patient and helpful as we all navigate this new landscape of bigger family. It seems almost diminishing to put into words, but you are just The Greatest Kid Ever. Having you around is like having my own personal sprite.
This morning we went to Albertson's to pick out the cupcakes for your birthday picnic tomorrow. We came home with an excessive amount of store-bought processed sugar (ugh, I'm dying on the inside at this). You were so excited to pick everything out. Somewhere in the back of my head, my brain was yelling at me to tell you no, put back that extra box, we don't need that many tiny cupcakes. But my heart looked at you and said, "This girl deserves every freaking cupcake in the state. You go ahead and fill our cart with chemical bliss!" so that's what we did.
Watching you turn in to your own person is endlessly fascinating. We took you to Baby Animal Days a few weeks ago. You were not remotely interested in touching anything cute and furry (not even baby rabbits!!), but you were all about petting the snakes and fish! Seriously?! You play with the babies (dolls) all the time at preschool. You LOVE "cooking" in your tiny kitchen. The other day you made me boiled hamsickers with ketchup aioli, and let me tell you--DELICIOUS. You've recently been trying on defiance like a new shirt. I'll ask you to do something and you'll say NO! and then look at me to gauge my reaction before deciding if you're going to relent. It's hard, because I want you to be assertive. But I also want you to put your shoes on...
Sometime in the last year I started writing down some of the stuff that comes out of your mouth. I imagine some of it gets lost without your perfect delivery, but it's still pretty great. I'm going to put them down below.
Happy Birthday, Sugar Bean. I love you most of all.
I'm just sitting here relaxing and having some joy. 12/8/18 (looking at the Christmas tree)
On discussing going sledding...
Andy: I guess it'll just be us (because I wasn't going)
Alice: Unless we see a raccoon. Then it'll be us and a raccoon. 12/10/18
Andy: What do you want for breakfast this morning?
Alice: Cereal and meat! 12/29/18
Mama, when I love you, you're beautiful. 1/5/19
I can't wait to be a grown up! You get to drink alcohol and curl ribbon with scissors! 2/14/19
While snuggling at bedtime:
Me: Alice, it's really hard when we don't have a routine isn't it?
Me: Well I wanted to tell you that you're doing so great at helping mama and dad figure it out. We're really proud of how awesome you are.
Alice: Ya, mama, I thought you were going to say "Alice, I have a snack for you." 3/1/19
Would you like to enjoy (join) us for dinner?
Don't forget my constructions (instructions)!!
At 5 a.m.: Mama, do we still have the chicken stick for snapping? (WTF...?!...upon further questioning...the wishbone from Thanksgiving.) 3/7/19
After telling her I thought there were 2 alligators in the box, one for her and one for Alafair: Mama, there's one alligator, one whale, and one flower. I guess Aunt Danyow didn't send Alafair any presents.
Alice: Do hugs and kisses come off?
Me: Never! That's why kids grow. They get so many hugs and kisses it just builds up and they get bigger and bigger.
Me: It's true!!
Alice: Mama. Kids grow from food and naps.
Me: Oh....right. 3/27/19