You turned thirty three months old yesterday. Since you're so tiny and so very verbal, people often look at me with surprise and ask how old you are. It feels odd to say "She's almost three." I don't know how the time passed so quickly, but it's been the best almost-three-years of my life.
This is the last birthday letter I'll write to you as my only child. Ethan will join our family in less than two weeks. You are so excited about his arrival. Just this morning, you were snuggled up to me and felt him moving. You said "I can't wait to meet him!" You plan on holding him and making him "comfy cozy." You're ready to help change diapers and soothe him when he cries. You are going to be such a sweet and loving big sister.
We've been making the most of our time together lately, with special "family" activities. We've been apple picking and to the circus. We've been to the park a million times, where you just want to swing and swing and swing. We've been out to dinner and played games and read books and cooked together. We've made crafts and colored and used glitter glue and put Halloween stickers on paper for hours. We've talked and talked and talked. You love doing anything "like a family," even mundane things like brushing your teeth!
You still require pickles each day before your nap. I lay down in bed with you as you crunch them and you always ask for stories. You need a story about Pablo and Rose, two made up characters, and a story about when you were born. Pablo and Rose used to take trips around the world on airplanes, but now you insist they get hurt in the story. So I find myself thinking of ways someone can break a bone! (Isn't this crazy?) They slip on water by the pool, trip on a branch on the sidewalk, and bump into each other when they're not paying attention. Then they are rushed to the hospital, where the doctors ask them what color cast they need. Of course, the answer is always pink! Let's just say your birth story is more fun to tell!
In addition to pickles, you love sushi. Last time we went out, we allowed you to eat the raw stuff for the first time. You devoured spicy tuna hand rolls and discovered a true love for masago. Pomegranates are in season again, so I have been spending lots of time pulling the jewel-like seeds out and putting them into bowls for you. You also like to eat cupcakes and candy, like any child!
Recently, you want to know what road we are driving on. "Are we on Manchester Road?" You know most of the street names close to home, and others that we travel frequently. It always makes me laugh to hear your little voice asking "This New Ballas Road?" I joke that you are already better with directions than Aunt Rachel!
You are becoming more musical all the time. Sometimes I'll see you tapping on something (your tummy or the table or the kitchen floor or a park bench) and you'll say "I'm making music!" You play your recorder and have just learned how to move your fingers up and down on the holes to make different notes. And, oh, do you love to sing! When we went apple picking, the orchard had a stage for Kid's Karaoke. You marched right up and sang Twinkle Twinkle Little Star - three times! You are a great performer and you did not want to leave the stage!
Your favorite musical artist is Taylor Swift. You discovered her by chance on the radio one day, and begged to hear her each time we went somewhere in the car. I finally had Daddy download the CD and now we play it constantly. You used to like You Belong to Me because of the line "She wears high heels, I wear sneakers." Your face lights up and you belt it out! But now you like Love Story. You love the end, where Romeo pulls out a ring and proposes. As the only two-year-old I know who is obsessed with weddings, it is the perfect song for you!
So we listen to those two songs over and over. I hadn't even heard many of the other songs until the other day. You stayed with GaGa while I had an appointment with my doctor. I'm so used to playing your music that I didn't even think about turning on something else. I just listened to the CD and the song The Best Day made me cry! It's a simple song with little memories of childhood, and a girl who is thankful for her mother. I hope and pray I am this kind of mother to you. And I hope you have these kind of memories to look back on when you're grown.
I always have the best days with you...