My precious little hunky chunk--you are ONE year old! I cannot believe a whole year has passed since you rounded out our little family.
You were 9 pounds and 13 ounces of pure perfection (my doctor didn't believe me when I told him you were going to be a biggun...mama knows best). We were all three instantly in love with you.
You are so laid back and easy going. You've always been a good sleeper (hallelujah!) and you really only get upset when you're hungry. It took us a long time to get you to laugh out loud, because like your daddy and your Papa, you have a pretty serious looking "happy face".
My little Kaplan, you are such a snuggle bug. You love to be loved on and will snuggle in for a hug in the sweetest little way--you usually do this when I get you out of your bed and when I'm about to put you in your carseat (you know it's harder for me to put you down in that seat when you're loving on me!)
You have been a pretty big mama's boy since day one. Daddy was working so much for the first half of this year that it took you two a while to warm up to each other. But here in these last couple of months, you have become big time buds. Not to mention, you are such a mini-me of your daddy. You look exactly like him and share SO many of his personality traits. There has not been a single day go by that at least one person hasn't told me how much you look like your daddy or refers to you as "mini-Hunter".
And that sister of yours...you have loved each other every single second.
Speaking of Arabella, you are such a trooper. She tends to think of you as her favorite toy, dragging you around the house, dressing you up in all kinds of accessories, taking things away from you, laying on top of you...putting you through the ringer! You will fuss when you've had enough, but for the most part you just go with the flow and let her do her thing. Your eyes light up when you see her, especially first thing in the morning. Makes my mama heart melt.
As of now, you have 9 teeth and humongous gums with some more on the way. You are trying to toddle about (taking about 7-10 steps at a time); but you are such a quick crawler and you know that's still your fastest method of transportation, so it usually wins out. You can say Bella, mama, dad, wa-wa-wa (Juannie), look, hi/hey, and you shake your head no. And you've already had your first real haircut--not just a trim--because that beautiful hair you were born with got too long! You've also already been to six states and flown on a plane, you little traveler, you.
Our favorite nickname for you is "Flappin' Kaplan" because you flap your arms like a wild man all the time. It makes us laugh every single time! You also kick your right leg over and over, especially when you're excited.
You love singing (in church, when Juannie hits the high notes, you can't get over to her fast enough!) and will try to join in. You love to read books and are mesmerized by all the pictures. You love Bible class and are starting to participate and soak it all in. You love being outside and crawling around in the grass and swinging. If Bella or daddy goes outside without you, you pull the curtain on the back door aside and just watch and jabber until they come back in. And most of all, you love to eat. Your best friend is whoever has the food :)
You have mastered the game of peek a boo, from leaning around furniture or someone's shoulder to covering up with a blanket to popping up and down behind a church pew. So fun! And while we're talking about church pews...you are such the little escape artist! You crawl under the pews and through people's legs before we can even realize you're going. We've had to snatch you up halfway down the aisle several times...
Kaplan, your laugh is very contagious. It took us so long to get a real one...we cherish them so much! Your first belly laugh at something instead of from being tickled was of course at Arabella. I love how much you make each other laugh.
You are so incredibly curious. You have no fear and explore any new place. You climb and dig, open every cabinet you can reach, put every thing you touch in your mouth...I can't let you out of sight because I guarantee you're getting into something! I am constantly digging things out of your mouth. Keeps us on our toes. But goodness, you're cute.
Kaplan Paul, you have added a whole 'nother level of love to our family. It is so much fun to see little pieces of who we are come out in you. You are just such a cool kid. I hope you never lose your pleasant, laid back way of handling life.
Your daddy and I will fight for you, protect you, teach you, and love you every single day of our lives. You will always be our precious, perfect son; our second baby; our beautiful, blessed gift.
...to a year
Happy birthday, sweet boy! I love you more than you will ever know.