Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Dear Arabella,

You, beautiful one, are FIVE years old!

I cannot even handle that number.  FIVE.  That means you're a full blown kid more baby or toddler or preschooler.  Holy Moly.  

You are such a curious little girl, and your daddy and I love that.  This past year, you have really started solving problems and finding other solutions if one doesn't work.  Your vocabulary is crazy, and the words and sayings you spout off just blow us away!  If we ask you how you know something, you usually respond with, "I don't know, I just know it!" (which is something Mimi and Papa heard a lot from me too...)

You also still love to be daddy's helper.  Y'alls favorite thing to do is go fishing of course.  Daddy got a new boat at the beginning of the year, and you two are always itching to take it out for the day!  You've gotten to go "to the ocean" (the jetties) and catch some bigger fish--even a shark!  You also help him build and work on the cars and fix anything that needs it.  Not only do you help him, but he explains all the whats and whys and hows--you ask questions and soak every bit of it in.  You love to learn!

You will sit at our desk and draw/color/write almost all day long.  You love to make people cards and write notes.  You know all of your letters and how to write them; and you're learning their sounds and  how to spell and sound out some simple words!  You've also started figuring out some simple addition and subtraction problems.  Your little brain just never stops!

This year has been one for the books for you with cool trips!  You got to go to your first concert (TobyMac--Air1 Tour) and were a pretty big fan!  It overwhelmed you at first, but by the time he came out and sang, you were up singing along and loving ever minute.  Then you also got to go to a For King and Country (your favorite) concert!  You sang every single song at the top of your much fun.  We also got to go see Frozen on Ice!  Then, Mimi and Papa took you and your cousins to Great Wolf Lodge on a "no parents allowed" trip--you felt so big and had the time of your life.  And we also went to DisneyLand as a little family which was just amazing!  Quite a big year for you and your memory bank, little one :)

You are still just kind-hearted and sweet.  You are so tender when the moments warrant it, and will do just about anything you can to help anybody.  You are grateful and you share and are amazingly unselfish for a wee one.  You love people well, and I hope you never lose that.

Hearing you sing and pray is still one of my absolute favorites.  You know just about every song that comes on Air1 and we sing to the radio every time we're in the car!  Your favorites right now are anything by TobyMac (specifically "Til the Day I Die") and For King and Country (specifically "Fix My Eyes"), "The River", "Don't Leave Me Alone",  "Eye of the Storm", and "God is on the Move".

You are also so brave. You've tried so many new things this year, including a zip line and roller coasters, water slides and gymnastics tricks (you take gymnastics twice a week and are in the advanced class!).  You also love to catch and hold animals like frogs and lizards and butterflies and fish...  It's always really neat to see you work through the process of being afraid and choosing to be brave and try something anyway--and the majority of the time, you end up loving whatever it was!

Costumes.  We are still in the costume phase, hot and heavy!  There aren't many days at all that go by without you spending some quality time in one of your costumes.  You have almost all of the princesses as well as some Disney characters--and most of them have quite a few holes because of so much play time!

You and Kaplan are best friends.  Now, in true older sibling fashion, you drive him absolutely crazy on purpose, and you boss him around like nobody else.  But you adore each other.  He follows you everywhere and copies everything you do--he looks up to you so much!  I have loved watching your imaginations grow together and get to play.

I also know that you are going to be such a great big sister to Landry as well.  It's been so fun with you through this pregnancy since you actually understand what's going on.  

I am so excited and anxious to see how much more you grow and learn and change this next year.  Your daddy and I are whole-heartedly obsessed with who you are and always will be.  Keep enjoying life and finding giggles every single day.  Arabella, you are our treasured gift, and I promise that we will always love you more than you will ever know.

Happy birthday, my love!

xoxo, mama

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