Tuesday, August 11, 2009

happy 3 years, little mouse

this little girl speaks in paragraphs. and i could write paragraphs about her (and i will).

this little girl makes me laugh. she wears a piece of her blankee around her neck at all times and when i told her about going to disneyland and how we were going to see the princesses and talk to them, she merely gave me a stern and disbelieving look before asking very doubtfully, "they are real?"

we almost didn't take her after that, but ryan and i were too excited to decide that perhaps our very realistic toddler shouldn't be convinced that all of those pretend people really are real. i mean, how are we going to ensure a screwed up child leading to a screwed up adult who writes beautifully and ends up with a heartbreaking memoir that ends up making our retirement completely luxurious? i have plans, people. goals. and i'm working on those plans and goals a step at time.

for example, step one: take my child to disneyland.

this year has been different from the other years because this year ava has been anticipating her birthday. and, most of all, birthday cakes. this year she wants a pink cake with sprinkles. and she makes "birthday cakes" out of piles of dvds and sticks a "candle" in by putting the cap of a marker on top. the birthday song is sung, the candles are blown out with the help of a waving hand (which i don't quite understand) and we eat the cake. and begin again.

the other day i was watching her eat her corn dog at hot dog on a stick, and then i was watching her eat her gelato and i just couldn't get over her. the length of her legs, the length of her hair. the conversation she was having with her gelato. when she did she do it? how did she slip in all of that growth under my nose? am i not paying enough attention? am i not savoring her enough? i know that having seth has been distracting, but how did she get that much past me?

i marvel at her beauty, i marvel at her intelligence. i marvel at the fact that once upon a time i held her in the crook of my elbow. that she couldn't catch a proper breath of oxygen on her own. and now, here she is, sneaking bags of popcorn out of the pantry and into her bedroom. and when asked what she is doing, replying, "nothing. oh! look! a bag of popcorn! this doesn't belong here! don't worry, mom, i'll put it away."

this, the fourth year of her life will be the year i am more patient, more loving, more understanding. i will savor her more, i will hold her and kiss her and read her stories and answer all of those "why?" questions. this is the year her growth will not go unnoticed, this is the year that will make all the difference.

what i want for this mouse: goodness. happiness. a strong work ethic, a good attitiude, faith, security. . .and as a mother i wonder, how can i make sure she'll have those things? what is the most i can do to give them to her? tell me and i will to do it.

hapy three years, little one.

for a second birthday shout out, go here. and a first birthday shout out? here.


Lisa said...

Happy birthday yo lovely little Ava.

redstarmama said...

Happy birthday, you darling little thing!

Erica said...

she actually said that about the popcorn? That is so hilarious. Ava just sounds so funny. First with her befriending Obama and now this

Megan said...

Happy Birthday to Ava. I am still proud to be the first person she ever spit up on :)

Freckles said...

Happy birthday Ava! Wow, you couldn't believe Kai is 6 and I can't believe Ava is 3! Time flies!! She is such a fun girl, so...alive! I love your stories about her, too.

The Strong Family said...

wow how time flies. happy birthday ava, make sure and post about the disneyland trip!!

Morgan said...

Happy belated birthday to your sweet little Ava! What a beautiful post. I think I melted when I saw that picture of the two of you. So precious!

Aria Bethards said...

Happy birthday to you, Ava! And Miriam, I just love that second photo with you and her cuddling. What a beautiful and wonderful mother you are. It looks like it's been a very special three years.