Tuesday, August 14, 2007

To My Little Spitfire


Well Miss Emma, Happy 2nd Birthday! It's taken me about 4 months to get to the point where I can admit that you are actually turning 2 years old. Of course, you have given me more than enough clues that you are ready to turn 2. I, however, am still trying to get used to the idea.

Last year's birthday letter was a bit mushy—which is fine by me—but as I get to know your personality more and more, it only seems appropriate that this one be a little less flowery and more to the point.

I think the only word that could come close to describing you is "spitfire." You are one busy lady, and you definitely like things your way. You have an unfathomable amount of energy that begins the very moment you wake up...at 6am. No cuddling, no "easing into the day." Nope, you are up and ready to play the second those eyes pop open.

From there, our days are usually filled with lots of activity. You are extremely physical and love to play "Ring the Rosie," catch, and "Chase You." There are a few other crazy games you and your Daddy play, like running into a pile of pillows on his chest; flipping over his head; and tickle wrestling, but with Mommy's belly getting bigger every day, we save those for when Daddy gets home.

Outside is one of your favorite places to be, whether we are going for short walks to visit the porcelain "hop hops" down the street or taking a trip in your wagon to get the mail. Of course, you insist that we "snap, snap!" you in every trip and that you have at least one baby or other furry friend with you. You also love driving your Dora vroom vroom "to the store," only to quickly return with an "I'm back" and a big hug.

You have recently grown very fond of your sandbox, which keeps you busy for quite a while on hot days, as long as you have a couple of buckets of water nearby. Mommy especially enjoys these days, when she can sit and read a book or magazine as you play.

And the park. Let's not forget about the park. The "wee slide" is by far your favorite part of our trips, but you also enjoy climbing up the steps and will even go for a short swing if other kids are threatening to use it first.

You are certainly not shy, but I wouldn't exactly call you friendly either. Strangers work hard to get you to flash a smile, but you usually just turn away or look right past them. I admit that I used to get upset about it, but now I know this is just your way. But for those you know and love, you are more than happy to share a quick kiss or hug, although most of us would like to hang on a little tighter and a little longer. You love to play with kids, and seem to prefer those who challenge you. Although you like your way, you also appreciate a little conflict. This makes Mommy very, very nervous…

What I would call our downtime consists of building towers with Daddy, reading books, and watching your beloved 30 minutes of TV a day. Your favorite shows include Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and Wonder Pets, as well as your Elmo, Bob & Larry (Veggie Tales), and turtle (The Pond) videos. As active as you are, I know you would be more than happy to sit in front of the TV all day long. This is why you are limited to one show a day on my clock, if at all.

One of your very most favorite things to do is take care of your baby and Minnie. These are truly your buds. You make them meals all the time, take them for walks, rock them when they cry, put them "night night," feed them bottles, and bring them with you anywhere I'll let you. They are truly your best friends, and you love them with such intensity that my heart literally wants to burst. You are going to be such a great big sister. This I know for a fact.

You are extremely sharp and soak up new information like a sponge.
You can:
  • Sing your ABCs, as well as a dozen other songs
  • Recognize and name almost all of your letters
  • Easily count to 15 (although 13 is often missing for some reason)
  • Name your shapes and colors (although we often mix up red/pink and blue/green)
  • Communicate in sentences that blow my mind
  • And the biggie… go potty on the toilet! This one truly took me by surprise, but once you set your mind to something, I have a feeling there is no turning back. (At least I hope!) I wasn't expecting you to be in" big girl pants" before your second birthday, but then again, that is exactly why it happened. You often like to remind me that we run on Emma's clock, not mine.

    Eating is still one of your favorite things to do, although you are getting pickier by the day. You love your whole-wheat noodles, beans, and turkey hotdogs from TJs, but lately, any other protein needs to be "dip-dipped" in ketchup. You like green beans, peas, and corn, but won't touch potatoes for some reason. You love fruit of all kinds, especially purple "bapes," '"nanas" and watermelon. You haven't had any real junk food yet, so your indulgences include the occasional banana cookie and Kix cereal. We typically stick to the good stuff, and you seem just fine with that.

    You sleep as hard as you play. You take a 3-hr nap every day and sleep about 10-11 hours at night. This is like clockwork unless you are sick. Mommy loves this about you! HOWEVER, if for some reason you don't get all of this sleep in, you can be pretty darn cranky, and the rest of our day is a struggle. Mommy doesn't like this part, but I also realize I can't have it both ways. So a strict schedule it is!

    I know I am still #1 in your life, but we certainly have our share of power struggles. You have taught me to be very creative when giving directions and have forced me to pull patience from places I didn't even know existed. In fact, you may be solely responsible for improving my prayer life! ☺

    Truth be told, your zest for life leaves me with very little energy at the end of the day, but it is worth every second as God gives me glimpses of the woman you will become: Assertive, successful and energetic, yet loving, caring and passionate. A wonderful mix that only our Creator could come up with.

    As the next year unfolds, you will certainly have a lot to deal with: A new little sister or brother, (hopefully) a new house, and lots of new milestones. But with your strength and determination, I know you will be just fine.

    Mommy, on the other hand, might just need a few more snuggles to get through it all…

    Happy Birthday, sweetie! I love you more than you'll ever know.

    grandma bernard said...

    Ps 103 says it better than I ever could: "As parents feel for their children, God feels for those who fear him...
    He knows us inside and out God's love, though, is ever and always, eternally present to all who fear him...
    Making everything right for them and their children as they follow his Covenant ways and remember to do whatever he said."

    Our little Emma is such a precious gift and such a delight. I am so proud that you are on His path and teaching Emma His ways.

    Happy birthday little girl, WE LOVE YOU, but more importantly, Jesus loves you!

    aunt nenni said...

    Wow! You made me cry again Lis, but def not like last year.
    Emma you are turning into a little girl faster than we imagined or hoped, but we love you just the same, if not more. You are truly an amazing little girl!
    Happy 2nd Birthday Angel!

    New Mama's Nest said...

    Happy Birthday!!!

    amanda said...

    How is it possible that it's time for another birthday post already?!?!?
    Happy 2nd Birthday, Emma girl! Hope your day was fun! :)

    Jennifer said...

    Happy Birthday Emma!!! Hope you had a great day!

    Lorrie said...

    Wow! That was wonderful. I finally got a chance to sit down and read all the fun thing that are happening in your family . I am so happy that you keep us all updated . HAPPY BIRTHDAY LITTLE ONE!!!

    WE LOVE YOU!!!

    The Mehalek Family

    Glass Half Full said...

    Yeah for Emma!! And soon she will venture into being a sister....


    i am not said...

    Happy Birthday Emma!!! We love you! Hope you had a great day:)

    Jen said...

    Happy Birthday Emma! Three cheers for the potty-going gal! Hope your 3rd year is as much fun as the first 2. And prayers that you'll LOVE being a big sis. :-)

    Mama C-ta said...

    Great letter, I love the updates that give us a peek into your world. You're a bright one, Ms. Emma and I think "spitfire" fits you perfectly, I love it!

    Also, there are those kids that will smile at anyone in their face. Yes, that is nice, but I like that you are selective b/c it makes it that much more special when you do flash a big one. You REALLY mean it. Maybe I'm just able to say that b/c we've experienced your warm responses!

    I don't think you'll experience the same potty training setbacks we have - if there is one thing we've learned, Emma shows us how things are done.

    "Assertive, successful and energetic, yet loving, caring and passionate" hmmmm, sounds like someone else we know, I wonder where you picked up these traits Emma! ;)

    Mommy Brain said...

    Happy Birthday cutie!

    KELLI BELLY said...

    Happy Birthday Emma!!! It's great to be two isn't it? I love your shirt. I know someone else that would fit the description of a pistol. Maybe you guys will meet one day :o)

    Randi said...

    Happy B-lated Birthday Cute Emma Girl!!!