Thursday, June 08, 2006

Happy Birthday Natalie!

Natalie, this is the first of your many birthday letters to come. It's a tradition I want to start so you'll have a chronicle of your life through my eyes. And selfishly it's for me too, so I remember just how amazing you are at every stage.

But first, you should know that this letter may always be late. Today should be May 22nd as I write this, but it's not. It's June already. I'm sorry! But really, you better get used to it. It runs in the family, I inherited it from my mom, and frankly, your dad isn't any better than me. You're doomed to a life of lateness, in one form or another. We'll try, but I'm sure this may frustrate you at times. I apologize in advance.

Wow Natalie, what a year. You have accomplished so much more than I have this year. When we brought you home last year, we didn't know what to do. Now, I know just what makes you happy... playing peekaboo, chasing the kitty, watching bubbles or dancing with me holding you in my arms. You have brought your dad and I so much joy this year, that I don't think words can express it. I love walking into your room and finding you standing in your crib with that big gummy grin on your face, ready for a day of fun.

You are such a social creature! You love nothing more than taking a walk in the stroller and smiling at everyone you see, just to get them to smile back and chat with you. And at that, you are almost always successful. You love the attention! I find this so endearing, and wonder how this will fit into your personality as you get older. I hope you always smile at strangers with the hope of getting one in return.

You are also a complete water baby, just like your dad. You love, love, love being in the pool, even being dunked. You love the beach, and your most recent discovery of fun... SAND! You just jet off and I can already envision you running around the beach soon, maybe by the end of this summer. I know you'll be so cute I just can't stand it.

On the not so endearing side, you really seem to enjoy throwing your food and sippy cups out of your highchair. Whether or not you're still hungry. And lately, you have no time for diaper changes. You wiggle and squirm and if I don't have just the perfect distraction, you leave a huge mess in your wake. I know you're just excited to keep exploring, but could you cut your mom just a bit of slack? You're also an early bird, I don't know where the hell that came from. I don't love this, but accept it as my fate for the time being. I've got my whole life to sleep, and you will be this age only once... I'll blink and it will be gone.

Natalie, I love you so much. I look forward to the 2nd year of your life and all the changes you will go through. I cannot wait to enjoy each moment as it comes. Soon enough, I won't be the center of your world, and I know I'll long for these days. Just don't run away too fast, okay?

Birthday Girl

1 comment:

Unlce Pete said...

As I post my first comment on the Natalie blog, I should start with agreeing that lateness runs in the family on the Kelley side at least! Let’s see, this was started in February and it’s taken me until August to actually read all of it past the first posting. I must say, it was very cool and reading it all at once gave me an interesting perspective on Natalie’s life, seeing her and the parents grow together. It brings back fond memories of my own children in their youngest days. I was also very touched to find out that Cousin Jordan’s birth was so inspirational to Natalie’s.

Natalie, on this occasion of three months past your Birthday, I wanted to tell you a few things. First, that you are very lucky as you have been blessed with fabulous parents that care about you very deeply. Try not to be too hard on them as you grow, taking particular care during your teenage years. I know this a long way away, but planning to be nice to them now will help. How your grandparents lived through my teenage years is still a mystery to me to this day, but it serves as a testament to what a great Mom you have as they still managed to raise her so well after dealing with me for all those years.

Kathy, myself and your cousins had a great time visiting with you a few weeks back and we look forward to seeing you again soon. Until then, we will listen to Cousin Megan saying “I miss Baby Natalie” as she does often. I will also apologize for the lateness that your Mom and I have not only inherited, but perhaps embraced as well. And please tell your Mom that one day I may even hook up the web camera she gave me so we can see you even more often! Hope you are having a Happy 15th Month Birthday!