Wednesday, December 2, 2015


My sweetest Ellen -

Seven? Really? I find this almost impossible to believe. Seven is the age of a real, true child. Not a baby. Not a toddler. Not even a novice in elementary school. A real KID. Tonight you filled out your birthday survey on your own for the first time (My favorite color ... my favorite food .... etc). When I suggested that you do it yourself, you paused and flashed the biggest smile at me, clearly proud of yourself. And you should be! I also remarked that you were able to read every "favorite" on the list, when I know you couldn't last year, and you even wrote all of the answers yourself with very little help. You've come so far and we are so proud of your hard work.

You are a super funny and super challenging child, sometimes at the exact same moment, which makes me want to throw my hands up in the air and tear my hair out. While cracking a smile that I can't contain. It's tough.

Your friend's parent commented to me the other day that being with you is almost like being with a peer at times. You do have this wise air about you, and a really mature sense of humor with excellent timing, and a big vocabulary to boot. Your Dad and I love spending time with you and comment to each other on the side how funny you are. Like, just today, you texted Dad from Papa's phone: "I'm just helping Steve. What are you up to?" Oh. My.

With this maturity comes a lot emotions that seem too big for your body. You FEEL a lot of things. I'm an emotional person, too, and I see a future of us stubbornly pushing back at each other. I do my very best to calmly explain the WHY behind the anger and want you to learn how to process all of this, too. And to know that you can always be angry with me and dad and that we will always love you, no matter what.

For your bedtime book last night, you picked all your monthly baby books off your shelf and we looked at all the pictures again. At the end of it, with your first birthday pictures, you said - "Oh, you really loved me then." Yes, I said, of course. And I love you even more now. "Because you know me better?"


Thank you, sweet girl, for making us parents and continuing to let us practice with you. I think the first seven years have gone remarkably well. Can't wait for the next 7 and the 7 after that and after that ...

Love you!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

She's Free!

My sweetest Georgie girl -
A couple days late with your birthday note, which I fear is how most things end up for you. Not enough time / not enough energy / too many other things going on. In the face of all of this, though, you are thriving. You are funny and charming and determined (OH SO DETERMINED) and changing every single day. It's a joy to watch you grow into your own person and I am proud of myself for recognizing and appreciating the feisty little girl behavior - you are our last, so we relish the fun (and frustration).

People, friends and strangers, often comment to us about what a beautiful little girl you are. Your Dad and I agree, of course, that you and Ellen are pretty much the cutest and sweetest girls of all time. I do hope these folks, though, look past your striking sun-kissed blonde hair and your round blue eyes, to see your sweet smile, your ornery smirk, and the lightbulb in your head that I see all the time when you figure new things out!

You continue to follow my temperment, as much as Ellen follows Dad's - head strong, organized, liking things 'just so', a night owl - but I am starting to see more and more glimpses of Ellen in you, which delights and terrifies me. Just the other day I heard you singing in another room and it sounded just like Ellen at your age - I loved it.

Your most favorite song of the moment is the Star Spangled Banner, thanks to Ellen singing it on repeat, trying to get the words just right during the World Series (Go Royals!). You idolize your sister and the two of you can be the best of friends, in a heart-melting way, and you can bicker like crazy, which makes us all crazy. Having a sister is one of the best gifts in the world and I try to remind you both of this all the time.

Your speech is not as advanced as Ellen's at this age, so I do a lot of interpreting for you, but I love the way you say things just the same. And I see the wheels in your head turning. In fact, just the other day we played a rousing round of "Animal Guessing Game" in the car and you guessed hippo, very appropriately, when Ellen couldn't figure it out. You were so proud of yourself!

You are a sensitive little soul and very much dislike the word "NO" or anything that resembles discipline. You feel justified in outright ignoring my requests, very content to do your own thing on your own timeline. If you do get in trouble, I can pretty much count backwards from 5 and am guaranteed that your will have a red face, the saddest little pout you've ever seen, and tears streaming down your face. It's so cute that it's hard to stay mad at you. Again, clever.

You are a cuddly, loving child - much more than I remember Ellen being. You frequently ask for a "huggy" or to be carried ("uppy") and I most always comply. Just the other day I was telling someone that I often treat Ellen as my peer and you as my baby, which clearly will be a problem in the not-too-distant-future!

I delight in our "Mommy-Georgie" days and feel so lucky to have the time with you, even if it's not all footloose and fancy free. I love to see the pride in your face as your learn new skills. I am proud of your independent streak and hope it serves you well. Dad, Ellen and I all giggle about the funny things you do and I feel certain that our family wouldn't be complete without you.

Love you so much, sweet girl.
Happy 3rd Birthday!