To the one who made me a mama:
You are the light of our lives. You're too smart for your own good (or ours for that matter). You're dramatic and joy-filled and so very goofy. But underneath all of that, you've got the kindest heart of us all. You hug tightly and love fiercely. You treasure "special time" with the ones you love; but never exclude anyone. You are tender and kind and love "the least of these" with your whole heart. You stand up for your brother and defend him at all costs. (Even when he pulls your hair.) You've been given the gift of endless energy like your daddy; and we pray God will use that mightily. You play school with your animals and talk to them sometimes until midnight. Your brother calls you "sis sis" and wants to follow you around everywhere to learn your ways. You make us all laugh on the daily. But not just any laugh- a straight up belly laugh until we cry. You're funny, little one. You're nothing like what I expected; but everything God knew I needed. Happy birthday to our Ellie Gray- you're my dreamiest of dreams come true. We're so lucky that you're ours.
We celebrated your birthday a record FIVE TIMES this past week:
Once with "Aunt Meg" who flew in from Texas to be with you.
Once with Mimi and GP . We had dinner and cupcakes and opened presents. Those two always make things magical.
Once with your preschool friends.
Once with some other wonderful buddies. We met them at Amelie's French Bakery for a fancy tea party. We all wore crowns and shared colorful macaroons. (Just like "Fancy Nancy" you said.)
And once with Papa, Gammy, JoJo, Nanna, Allison, Jon & Clara. You had a special Princess Cake at this party.
Goodness gracious, you are loved little one!
Things you love:
Playing Dress Up with Mama's scarves and shoes.
"Sheshal time" with mama or daddy.
Sleepovers and movies at Mimi's house.
I think these will be some of your most special memories
Evenings with Papa and Grammy.
You might live there if I let you
Playing Hide and Go Seek with your brother.
You're such a good sister. You let him win and act so surprised when you find him
You're so proud to walk into school now without crying! You give big hugs when you leave me and have the best time with your teachers and friends.
Playing School with your stuffed animals.
Park dates with Pops.
Yesterday when he took you, you said "Pops this is just the best day ever. Thanks for taking me to the park."
Reading books with Lula.
You cuddle so close to her and love your "Nuna" with all your heart.
Tea Parties with Mama.
Going to visit Daddy at work.
Greeting Daddy when he walks in the door every night.
You SPRINT to him like you haven't seen him in years. It's the kind of love that melts your heart!
Riding your tricycle around the driveway.
My favorite things you say:
"Mama, if all of the mommies in the whole world were lined up, I would choose YOU."
And I would choose you, sweet one. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME!
How lucky I am that you're mine.
"We shouldn't be scared of the dark, mama; because Jesus is in our heart and Jesus is LIGHT."
Amen and amen. Wise words, my little one!
At dinner every night:
"So Emily, how was your day? "
"So Michael, how was your day?"
When you meet a new person, you very confidently introduce yourself and say:
"Nice to meet you, I'm Ellie Gray."
(I love that you have named yourself that. So original and so you. I don't even think you know your real name anymore. No one even calls you Ellery. And I love that! I love that you are Elle to the world and "Ellie Gray" to all of your friends.)
I love your spunk and your sass and your kind, caring heart.
And OH how you love your cousins!
We need more Clara pictures :)
It seems like yesterday I was holding you in my arms just like this.
What a joy it's been to see you grow these past three years.
God's got great big plans for you, little one and I can't wait to watch.
I'll be the one on the sidelines cheering you on....always!
All my love,