Dear Paisley: Month 12

May 13th, 2011

Happy 1st Birthday, Paisley Joon!

You have no idea how unreal those words are to me. To actually say them outloud, and to celebrate the event, seems impossible. But, even having you here at all once seemed impossible. So, your lesson of the day, nothing is impossible.

On the morning of your birthday, daddy and I congratulated each other on making it. And a deserved congratulations to you too, surviving the two idiots fumbling our way through keeping you alive. (PS, you’ve made it farther than any plant I’ve ever owned.) Of course, your birthday was doubly special, since you share with daddy. 31 and 1, you’re a little set.

We spent your actual birthday doing what we do every Wednesday… working. I was just heartsick that day. All I wanted was to snuggle you, but instead I had to interview castaway Biggest Loser contestants and tweet, and other very important things I do. You played with Jessica and Ellie all day, after I let you splurge on a watermelon-only breakfast! For dinner, you and I got dressed up and had a birthday dinner at Yia Yia’s, where you enjoyed whipped sweet potatoes and roasted chicken. And goldfish crackers.

The real party was April 30, and we had about two dozen friends and family join us for lunch, cake, and presents. You were surprisingly cooperative; I feared the crowd would overwhelm you, but you rolled with it. You were very involved with the opening of your presents. And when it came time for the cake smash, you were your usual dainty self, picking up a little frosting and eating it (Aunt Jenna and Aunt LaRenda made the most amazing watermelon cakes). Then, I smooshed your hand in to the cake and, well, that was the end of that little miss waterworks!

Having an entire year worth of months to look back on now, I can say for certain that 11 months was my favorite age. You’ve always had personality, but it’s on full display now. You have definite moods, tones in your voice, and are growing more particular about what you do and don’t like. With this, it seems your vocabulary grows exponentially each day. By your first birthday you could say more than two dozen words:
bye bye
no no
thank you
go go go
joon joon
see it (re: books)
la la la
all done
please (signed)
more (signed)

You are very playful and very funny. You greet daddy at the door after work and point to and say “shoes!” This is his signal to remove the shoes so you can begin “tickle tickle”-ing his toes. He feigns a hearty laugh so that you think you’re really getting him. (PS you’re obsessed with shoes! Obsessed!) You love to play chase and don’t mind be the chaser or the chasee. You’re pretty fast about it. You love to be held in our arms and throw yourself backward – all you’re missing is a bungee cord. You enjoy play kiss games – kissing us over and over and over again, making little fish-lip faces to let us know you’re ready for a kiss, or you pop-pop-pop your lips together (this is especially adorable when you do it throughout the grocery store).

We celebrated your first Easter the weekend before your first birthday. The night before we attended an Easter egg hunt at Grandma Lori’s church. It was a big crowd with quite a few kids and the rough grass sticking in to your ADORABLE pink flower sandals was less than favorable for you. You finally got the hang of collecting the candy out of the grass and putting it in your little basket. I felt no shame in snatching every Twix I could find. The next morning, we found that the Easter bunny had scattered eggs all over our backyard! What a surprise to wake up too! That bunny knows how healthy we are, so he obliged by filling the eggs with organic fruit snacks and quarters. We had a big breakfast with daddy, jenna/eric/ellie, and grandpa jerry/pam. Then, you and Ellie grabbed your baskets and collected all of the eggs. You were convinced they were balls (“ball! ball!”), which I encouraged because it just fueled your desire to pick them up and put in your basket.

We’ve officially celebrated all of the holidays with you, and your birthday, and are wrapping up your first year with a very tear-soaked pink ribbon. I’ve never loved anyone or anything more, Paisley Joon. I used to “yeah yeah yeah” my parents when they’d tell me the same, but it’s so true. You are everything I ever wanted, even when I had no idea what it really was I was wanting. If you could drink, I’d raise a glass and say “Cheers! We both survived!”, but you can’t (yet, we’ll wait until at least your 14th birthday). So, I’ll say that I couldn’t be more excited to see what year two is going to bring us, and that I’m anxious to watch you discover so much more about the world around you.

I love you bug-