|Enjoying breakfast in bed.|
I can vividly remember those last moments before Ayla was born. I remember how Gregory and I spent the day I went into labor, and thus avoided going to the hospital for 12 hours. We went for a long walk, made a dinner without worrying about a crying baby and played Scrabble. Not until it was gone, did I appreciate the simpleness of filling my days without willful children to dictate my activities.
(1) You think you know what parenthood is going to be, then you are knocked off your feet.
(2) This cycle repeats on a daily basis thereafter.
We celebrated the day quietly at home, with a spaghetti dinner joined by our only family in the area. Suzanne & Phil - you really made the party with your gifts of flamenco dresses and the unicorn. Can you guess what Ayla has been playing with ALL day today?
|Being very clear about which presents she liked and disliked. Sorry, Eve, I think she was bummed that we already have one set of viking horns!|
|However, we get a thumbs up for the skanky bunny ears from Halloween! Should I be worried?|
|Our party guests, Suzanne and Phil!|
Gregory and I are still taking advantage of the simple joys that our daughter partakes in: drawing and playing pretend. Without peer pressure and friends to influence her too much, Ayla isn't asking for her own Nintendo DS or expensive fashion items. YET. So we showered her with dollar store gifts like paint-by-number sets, drawing pads, markers and Hello Kitty sheets (another wondrous Goodwill find!).
Every day with Ayla is a new discovery, and even when she is stomping around the house because I've essentially ruined her life (by turning off the tv or asking her to pick up Legos), I am grateful to know and love her. It's a beautiful thing to watch Ayla encounter the world without fear or self-consciousness. She is thoughtful, kind, giving and assertive. For some reason, people find the pronunciation of Ayla's name difficult. Every time we meet a new person and they say, "Your name is Ava? Layla? Allyah?", she responds loudly, "No, it's Aay-LA!" Now that's someone who knows who she is!
Happy Birthday, my spunky 5 year old know-it-all woman. We are growing right along with you.