Happy birthday to Anna, who turned one year old yesterday.
Although the days leading up to her birthday had me an emotional train-wreck, I managed to enjoy the day without shedding a tear.
We had a small party with immediate family (sans my parents and littlest sister, who were on vacation) and Anna’s Godparents–just enough people to fill up our teeny dining room. Mia chose matching outfits for herself and Anna, which made them look so darn cute together. The helium balloons made for a fun and wild time with the kids. We ate a pile of Lish’s chocolate chip cookies, chocolate frosted chocolate cupcakes, ice cream and coffee. It was perfect.
Anna loved opening her presents, which took us all completely by surprise. Who has ever heard of a one-year-old getting excited over birthday gifts?! She squealed at the pajamas she got from her auntie–yes, a one-year-old excited about pajamas! Undoubtedly, a priceless moment.
Alan showed a slide show he’d made highlighting Anna’s first year. Nothing evokes memory and emotion quite the way photos and music do when used together. I have watched the slide show eight times, amounting to a total of about ninety minutes of viewing time. I had to get some practice in before the party; by the fifth viewing I was able to make it through with dry eyes.
After the party was over, we gave Mia a special gift. This day was a celebration not only of Anna’s birth, but of Mia’s new role as a big sister. Mia has far exceed our expectations and embraced her new role more beautifully than we could have imagined. In many ways, she has grown up this past year. She has become Anna’s guardian, naturally looking out for and protecting Anna, nurturing and loving her every moment they are together. Mia has learned to wait and accepts that she’s not always first in line anymore. She is a remarkable little person.
Best of all, our long streak of dreary days was ended. Just as it did on the day she was born, the sun shone and melted the snow on Anna’s big day. Anna is our sunshine, and the weather was the perfect metaphor for the light she’s brought into our lives. And of course, also for her middle name, Soleil. What a joyful day!
Happy birthday, my sweet bundle of love!
Anna opening gifts, obviously excited…
cookies Alan baked according to Lish’s special recipe. They were delish!
Anna literally screaming with joy! She could hardly contain herself!
Excited about her Hannah jammies from auntie Daja…
and here she is snuggling her special auntie (next to auntie’s special guy)…
Mia and Anna’s oh-so-special grandparents…
Anna’s beautiful big sister in a birthday crown that Anna refused to wear…
and someone who was tickled pink by a special gift just for her: a puppy for her mama dog.
A memorable celebration and the start of a new year for Anna.