I know I've said it before, but I really, truly, cannot believe how quickly this year has flown by. Everyone warned me that it would, and I didn't believe them.
Our baby girl is 1!
We had so much fun celebrating her last night! Needless to say, it was an absolutely crazy few days going from Christmas Eve, to Christmas Day, then preparing for Allie's birthday just 5 short days later. It was worth all of the exhaustion, though, and everything went so well! (And by "everything", I mean "everything except the fact that the only available toilet in our house broke about 20 minutes into the birthday party, and our house was packed to the brim with people). Those are the moments I've just learned to laugh about, because really, what else can you do?!
A few of my favorite pictures from Allie's big day..
|Balloons on the mailbox = Party Time!|
|I got to make this fun banner for the party, and it turned out so cute and fun!|
|Smash Cake, Cupcake-Cake, and Cake Pops!|
I made the cake pops, and was so excited that they turned out (especially since I am NOT a stellar baker).
Allie wasn't too sure what to do with her cake, as is the case with most 1-year-olds, I'd think.
Becoming a mother has changed, challenged, blessed, and grown me in ways that I never could have imagined. I am constantly surprised by the new things Allie is learning, and I am so proud of every single little skill. She's amazing!
Several friends of mine write letters to their children on their birthdays. I completely love this idea (because I'm horribly sentimental), and I'm excited to begin that tradition with Allie's first birthday letter.
Happy 1st Birthday, sweet baby girl! I cannot believe a year has passed since I first laid tearful eyes on you in that hospital room. You were - and still are - the most beautiful thing I'd ever seen. Getting to know you this year has been one of the most incredible experiences of my life. Watching you grow from a tiny, helpless (and sleepless) infant into the toddling, inquisitive, smart little beauty you are today has been an amazing adventure, and I am so excited to know there are many more years, Lord willing, in store for our relationship to grow!
This year, I have watched you turn my husband into a loving, tender-hearted, gentle Daddy. His eyes light up when he sees you, just as yours do when you see him. Over the past few weeks, you have become especially attached to your 'Dada'. As soon as you hear the garage door begin to open in the afternoons, you begin to clap your hands and excitedly say, "Dada! Dada!" as you move toward the door. I love watching your love for him grow. He treats you with such tenderness, and I am amazed by his sensitivity to you. He knows you don't like the sun in your eyes when we're in the car, and he is so attentive and concerned if you're bothered by it. When he washes your face and hands after you eat a messy self-fed meal, he always uses warm water on a soft wash cloth - never cold water or paper towels. He takes care of you like every good daddy should care for his little princess.
A year ago today, I thought it wasn't possible to love you any more than I did when we finally met for the first time. Today, I know differently. Next year, I'm sure my love for you will multiply exponentially yet again. Several times this week, when I was rocking you (and your 'little blankie') at nap time, you picked your sleepy head up off of my shoulder to lean over and give me a kiss before falling asleep. I am so blessed to see this gentle, loving spirit beginning to develop in you already! I hope and pray that I am doing a good job of teaching you what it means to be a girl after God's heart, precious one. I love that any time I turn on music, you love to raise your hand in the air and praise Jesus. I pray you will learn at an early age what the significance of that praise is. This has been the most amazing, exhausting, challenging, emotional, wonderful, fun year I've ever experienced! I will never take for granted how blessed I've been to spend the first year of your life at home with you, watching all of your "firsts", and enjoying every single second.
I can't wait to see the things God has waiting for you in 2011, beautiful girl! Your Dada and I love you so very much, and are so thankful God entrusted you to us! Happy Birthday!