You are my sunshine...

and you have truly made me happy when skies were gray.

Dear Emberly,
Today you are one. And I'm still trying to wrap me head around that number. I'll never wrap my head around this time warp called childhood. In one sense I want you to grow, and learn, and love. But please know I'll always live with the ache. You will always be my baby regardless of how fast you grow.

I'm thankful for you.

I'm thankful for those baby grunts and snorts as you drink your bottles.

I'm thankful to have rocked you this year. Although you aren't really a rocker baby, I still love how your hand always finds mine as you search for your paci. That old saying that "babies don't keep" is true. The nights I treasure most are the ones when you melt into my arms.

I love the way you say "hut" when you answer me or want to get my attention. Or when you click your tongue to make the sounds that I'm making. Or when your brother purposely breathes in and makes a funny sound and you imitate him perfectly.

I'm thankful for gummy smiles. And the way your eyes light up. Oh your eyes! That's the one thing people compliment you the most (and your bows of course). And your chunky thighs.

I never want to forget the way you click your pacis in your mouth and how you kick and buck your legs when your not in the mood for a diaper change.

I'm thankful for those sleepless nights. They seem so distant now, but I loved the chance to see you just one more time each night. You had a look in the middle of the night that you don't have any other time. A happy, content, relaxed look. And as much as I don't miss those nights, I really do.

I'm thankful for your appetite. How you drop everything your doing when I shake a bottle. And how you gobble carrots down with both hands. You are pretty serious when it comes to food.

I'm thankful for these days. These precious days that I am able to spend with you. The daily routine never gets old because I'm just grateful for this time. Time I will never get back, time that no amount of money will ever buy. I didn't get that the first time around and I appreciated it even more because of that.

I am thankful to have seen that first smile, and roll-over, tooth and fever. For being able to hear those words "mama"and see you be completely content at times and totally frustrated at other times. You have such a strong personality. I can't wait to see how that develops.

I'm thankful that you entered our lives at the exact moment you did. It was difficult to navigate those first few months with such uncertainty, but again you (and your brother) were the reason we kept going.

On your first birthday I want you to know how much we love you. We can't wait to see what a beautiful little girl you become. Keep that personality and your love of life!

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