Is that not the cutest picture ever?? #iknowimbiased ;)
Oh my goodness. I can't handle it. These two little girls are just days from being one and three... We had their birthday celebration with my family here over the weekend. (I suspect Bug may ask to invite friends next year; I think she's finally wised up to my attempt to keep things smallish haha!) She had requested a Tinkerbell theme, which I shouldn't have been surprised at - she is obsessed with her fairy door that she got from her cousins in Ireland last year (from the Irish Fairy Door company!) and of course named the fairy who 'lived there' Tinkerbell.
Looking over the weekend's pictures, I can't help but marvel at the fact that we've got these two beautiful little girls in our life (soon to be a third!) and at how grown up they both are. It's the quintessential mom statement, but it truly does feel like just yesterday they were small enough to fit in the crook of my arm...
To the one who only started sleeping through the night properly one short month ago...(yep, you read that right. ELEVEN MONTHS of waking regularly in the night...) I love you. I love being your mama. I love hearing your hilariously contagious giggles, and seeing your eyebrows scrunch up in a myriad of expressions that seem to genuinely convey what you're thinking. Your squawking as of late has become wacky and fun communication - we can understand what you're trying your hardest to convey more of the time, and it is going to be so awesome when we can finally pick out recognizable words from the rest of the mix! My heart melts when you say "mama" because you say it so infrequently - and you always say it when you're upset or need cuddles or are hungry - and I adore the way you call out "dada" over and over until you see him poke his head around the corner of the kitchen where he's gone to get coffee, and then you squeal with delight and say "hiiiii" with your sweet baby voice and a big toothy grin. Or the way you became despondent the other day when he handed you to me and went down to his office in the morning, and you kept pointing at his door and crying for him. Seeing your relationship develop is the most incredible thing, just as it was for your sister. You're saying "hiiiii" and waving like a beauty queen for months now and it shows no sign of slowing - we really ought to get you a parade float of your very own! You've also started saying "wow" when you see things that are really interesting, and banging your hands and toys and plates on tables for the joy of the noise of it, and stacking blocks just the other day, and I cannot keep you off the fireplace or anything else raised for that matter - you love to climb and look at every surface as a challenge that you regularly rise to! You're all about high fives and clinking your cup with everyone else's at the table to get someone to say "cheers" :) The open mouthed kisses you've started giving with proper leans into the recipient, they just melt me. Or when you are being held by someone else and I walk by and you almost dive out of their arms into mine...best moments ever. Even when I have to share absolutely everything I try to eat with you because of the meltdown that will ensue if I tried to withhold a snack, I have to laugh at your persistent pointing and hollering and the way you will try anything at all. I love how our puppy Jack has become your best friend these last couple of months. You crawl all over him, regularly push him out of his own bed so you can lay in it, give him all your toys (& Bug's!) to chew on, and let him lick the food out of your hair (which I swear you rub into your hair at the dinner table just for that reaction!) and it is amazingly adorable. I can already tell he's going to be your special pet and he's completely on board with that alliance. Very soon you will be walking independently. Only a week or two ago we brought the walker up from the basement and within seconds - literally! - you were up and pushing that thing all around the kitchen with glee! Any time Papa is around you take steps with him and twice now you've let go and stood all by yourself - and once you even took a step all by yourself.
It doesn't matter that all of these phases are things we've seen another child through. Every time is amazing and special and wonderful and makes parents look at each other in awe and think, WE made this person. She's half you and half me....! I love you forever and always, my not-so-little Peanut.
And to my precious little Bug...my sweetheart who has become the best big sister ever, who goes over to her little sister often throughout the day simply to give her a hug or tell her you love her. Who always says you're sorry after bumping into her (whether accidentally or on purpose..) and can always distract her from crying by making her laugh. In fact, you can make her laugh like nobody else - she loves you so much! She adores you and follows you around constantly, which you handle like a champ for the most part, and you're getting so much better at sharing even your favorite toys. You constantly make me proud. Your memory is insane - I stop and just look at you sometimes with the things that you remember from months and months ago. You like to take your books from me and 'read' them to me instead - which you nearly recite verbatim because you know them so well. (And you demand that the voices are done properly, to your poor Daddy's chagrin as usually the 'proper' voices are the ones you've heard me reading them to you in...!) You are so stinking smart, and your communication is mind-boggling. Not only do you say - clearly! - hundreds more words than I feel like you ought to even know at this point, but you understand them and how to use them properly. Hearing you speak is one of my favorite sounds in the world. Lately everything is "that's my FAVorite ___ !" which makes me smile each time. I love your enthusiasm and your joy about the world around you. I love how much you believe in fairies and magic and how you love to play pretend with us. I love the stories that you create and tell us daily, and the wonderfully imaginative playful "pretend" that we absolutely must take part in and play the role that we've been designated. The way you've started to call for my attention by going "Mommy, mommy, mommy....." before any statement to come out of your mouth is brand new - no idea where you learned it - but it's pretty funny. The harrumphs and sighs when you have to wait, or are asked to be patient, or perhaps have to share something you don't want to...I can already see the flicks of attitude that we are in for when you're a teenager (God help us!) and at the same time, I know that it's been a big transition going from just you with Mommy and Daddy, to you AND Peanut - who requires a lot more attention still, let's be honest. And I still feel guilty for that, and for not being able to give you my sole undivided attention whenever you seek it out ("Mommy, do you want to set her down and come play this with me?") - but yet you've grown to be so independent. You are wonderful to play on your own with your puzzles or books or kitchen set when I need to be doing something else, but I constantly thank God that you still love cuddles, because those snuggles on the sofa in the hour after Peanut goes to bed and you're just with me, or with me and Daddy, are some of my favorite minutes in the day. Just last night we squashed ourselves under the big thick blanket on the sofa, watched Stick Man together (one of your current favorites), and the whole time you kept turning onto your side and chatting to me about your doll and things that happened in the day. :) Still, your independence is becoming more and more pronounced, as is the fact that you're no longer a baby in any way shape or form - you are such a grown up little girl and I shake my head often at that fact, and wonder where on earth did all the time go...?!
You are becoming a sensitive, loving, clever little girl and I am so excited to see how you grow out of the toddler age and into the little girl ages. You are my first baby, now my big girl - the one who made me a Mom and I'd wanted that so much. You broke us in as parents and constantly teach us new lessons about what we don't know on that topic, and always, always, ALWAYS make us want to be the best parents we can be.
And to the one who we haven't yet met...your big sisters are pretty incredible people. You're going to love them, just as they are going to love you! I can't wait to meet the little person who's just starting to kick and flutter hard enough for me to feel at night, and to see who you're going to look like. I pray that you and your sisters will be the best of friends, and will always know that you have each other to turn to and rely on. Family is absolutely everything.
I love you all, my beautiful girls. I am so grateful for each and every one of you, and what I am learning from you every day. And I always will be!