And just like that, my baby turned eight at the end of January.
Here’s my annual note to her:
You’re a magical little person. A little sprite filled with sunshine and a good measure of sass.
It seems like just yesterday you joined our world. Bringing with you a feeling of completion to our family of odds. When you were born, we were even.
And I like even numbers.
I struggle with how much to share about you online, sweet Vivienne. I looked through a year of photos and it was nearly impossible to choose just a few for this post.
The life in your little soul finds its way through each and every snapshot of you, Vivi.
This is because you are kinetic energy.
You are life.
You are brave and kind and strong.
You regularly save rolly-pollies from their eventual demise under our garage door. You make them comfortable homes and love them.
You love hard and loyally.
Baby Shirley is your baby, still. You dress her, you bathe her, you play with her.
For Christmas this year you asked for a small rocking chair so that you could sit and better rock her. And? You do it. You quietly rock her.
When you’re cradling that baby in your arms, you’ll often look down at her, gazing into her baby eyes and just smile a knowing smile…
As parents, we never want to box our children in. We don’t want to label them. We want them to grow and be who they are. But I can’t help but label you a nurturer.
A few other labels I’d attribute to you at this present time:
You’re a spitfire.
Sass and passion run through your veins. You’re fierce, Viv.
You’re an advocate.
If you disagree, or something isn’t fair for you or someone else, you speak up. You take up the cause.
You’re a kind soul.
You feel for people. When other people cry, or go through difficult times, you put your little hand on their back, or your head on their shoulder. You feel life with them. (I love this about you.)
You’re also messy, LOUD and strong-willed. You’re the BEST organizer in the house and no one refills the Topo Chicos in the fridge with such distinctive precision. Perfect lines, facing forward.
You’re slightly codependent and life without your sister — even if she’s gone only for the day — proves difficult. You share your snacks, your toys, your accessories – your life, with your sister. And when I separate you two because of tattling or some other infraction, instead of being relieved for the opportunity to be alone, you turn on me and tell me that you MISS her and that YOU CANNOT LIVE WITHOUT HER. (Oh, Vivi.)
Your smile makes my heart smile.
You ask me if we can cuddle. And we do.
You’re still wearing 4T jeans. (As seen below.)
You’re fantastic on your heelies. In fact, you and the two Lilas have created a trio and are entering the school talent show with a dance performance on your wheels.
You hate corn with all of your heart and soul. You do like brussels sprouts, broccoli and spinach. And mangos.
You’d eat cereal for every meal if you were allowed.
Your favorite toys are legos and Calico Critters. (Mine, too.) And you’re an amazing helper.
You are constantly talking. All of the time. At every second of the day. Except for when you’re sleeping.
“O Come All Ye Faithful” is your favorite Christmas carol and you do this sort of “trilling” thing with your voice when you sing that is ridiculously cute.
You still CRASH every night before bed after putting up some sort of mild fight. And, your pre-bed requirements include the Eeyore that your Daddy got you for your first birthday, with Shirley beside her, and your blanket that I crocheted for you before you were born, on your head.
You are a great reader in English, and are improving in Spanish.
You *loathe* brushing your teeth.
You’re in karate (green belt) and jazz dance and you’re constantly choreographing dances with your sister. Again, on the trampoline.
You drink chamomile tea and love to be cozy with a dog next to you.
Your Daddy thinks you’re becoming more bold, more confident. You are relying less on your sister, but instead are handling things on your own.
You had your tonsils and adenoids removed this year and during the surgery, your already loose teeth NEXT to your already–missing front teeth – fell out, giving you a four-tooth-wide window of toothlessness. So, your smile is ever-changing. And it’s cute.
You love sloths and llamas and horses.
Picking you up from school is one of my favorite things to do because you always have a good story.
Vivi, Vivi, Vivi… I love your confidence and your passion. Your empathy and love. You assess situations and find solutions and I always say that if you moved out tomorrow, you’d totally be fine. You’d get a job, rent an apartment and be fine.
I love you with all my heart, Vivi.
You’re my favorite Vivienne on this earth.
I love you just as you are.
So does your Daddy.
Happy eighth birthday, sweet girl.
Vivi’s History on T W O P R E T Z E L S
Pictures from Vivi’s first year — just a few — click here to see
When I announced my pregnancy — click to read here
Vivienne’s birth story — click to read here
Vivienne’s birth announcement here — click to see it
My post to Vivienne on her 1st birthday — click to read it
Pics from Vivienne’s first cake experience — click to view
Vivienne’s first birthday party — click to see
My post to Vivienne on her 2nd birthday — click to read it
The pics from Vivi’s 2nd birthday party — click to read it
My post to Vivienne on her 3rd birthday — click to read it
The pics from Vivi’s 3rd birthday celebration — click to read it
My post to Vivienne on her 4th birthday — click to read it
The pics from Vivienne’s 4th birthday party — click to read it
Vivienne’s 5th birthday — click to read it
My post to Vivi on her 6th birthday – click to read it
My post to Vivi on her 7th birthday – click to read it