My beautiful Lauren,
I cannot believe it has been an entire year since you came into our lives. I can still remember seeing your sweet face the first time they placed you on my chest. My initial thought was "thank goodness that's over!" but that didn't last long. It took two seconds to fall in love with you. Your beautiful, dark hair (that caused me so much heartburn!) and your perfect features. Everything about you was a thousand times more amazing than I could have ever dreamed.
From the beginning, it was obvious that you had inherited my impatience. When you are ready for something, you're ready right now, especially when it comes to eating and sleeping. You've always had your own little personality, and it's been a joy watching you come into your own.
You may not be walking quite yet, but that doesn't keep you from getting into anything and everything. If I don't watch you closely you end up inside the dishwasher, playing in the rocks that surround our bamboo plant, or chasing the cats. Every once in awhile I'll catch you just standing, not holding onto anything, so I know you're close. I don't even want to think about all of the trouble you will get into with your brother when you're off and running.
And oh, your brother is one of your favorite people. Whatever he is doing you want to do, too. You try to help him draw on his easel, play computer games, or mess with my phone. Sometimes you even try to steal the food right off of his plate! Most of the time he loves having you around, although eventually he really wants to play or eat in peace. The first person he asks about in the morning is "his favorite Lauren" and if you are ever crying he tries to make you feel better. At first he would just make a silly noise, but now he tries to explain. "It's okay, Lauren! Mommy is coming back!" Watching you two together is one of my most favorite things. I hope that you will always have that sibling bond, even when you're driving each other crazy.
You are so curious and serious. Sometimes you sit back and watch me doing things and I can see your brain memorizing every little detail. When you picked up a spoon and immediately knew what to do with it I wasn't surprised. When you grabbed a crayon and went after the construction paper, it seemed so natural for you. Drinking out of a cup, throwing a ball, learning how to sign "more please" or "I love you"...you amaze me every day.
Listening to you try out new sounds is so much fun. You've grunted, gurgled, babbled, and even sounded like an angry cat. Every day we hear something new, like "what" or "wow" or "that". I know that in no time you'll be telling me stories and arguing with your brother.
You are just as social, and even more flirtatious, than I expected, although it took you a little while to get there. You wave at strangers and say "hi" or lower your head and look up through your eyelashes just for fun. It's hard for people to ignore you when you're beaming at them, or cracking up at something that you think is funny. It doesn't take long for you to wrap someone around your finger, and your daddy is no exception. He may not realize it, but I think you could get him to do just about anything. He loves his little girl.
You are always up for a challenge and not afraid of any new experience. Eating dirt? Been there, done that. Crawling in the prickly grass? No problem. Trying to ride your brother's scooter? You bet. I hope that you always keep that sense of adventure and live life to the fullest.
Lauren, you are the perfect addition to our family, the little girl that I have always wanted. I love you more than you could ever know and I am so lucky to be your mommy. Thank you for making me a better, more laid back parent. I hope that you always know just how special and beautiful you are.
Happy birthday, my sunshine.