A Handmade Birthday: From the Archives, April 2010

A post from my 2010 archives.  Eila just turned four, and I can’t help but remember back to yesterday, because wasn’t it just yesterday, when she was still my baby.  

One of my favorite family traditions is the handmade birthday outfit each year.  I love making them and my girls love wearing them!  This year I opted for something extra frilly – a dress with bows and ruffled layers – just because.  The dress was sleeveless and so for an early spring birthday I, of course, had to knit a companion sweater as well.

Grandma whipped up a matching birthday dress for Eila’s doll too.

To celebrate two years of Eila, I planned a simple, special day with a windy spring picnic, ladybug cupcakes from our favorite local bakery (my girl loves her “cutcates”), and a few beloved gifts.  This owl, a handcrafted Hansa toy, was my top gift pick because not only does it look like Eila with all that feathery hair, but also because Eila has a special interest in owls. We have an owl that perches on the top of our house most nights and Eila eagerly anticipates its arrival, mimicking its hoots all day long.  This fuzzy little guy was an instant best friend.

I also gifted her this doll stroller, because my busy little two year old needs a way to cart her babies to all their “appointments” – she makes a lot of trips to the “post office” with that doll stroller.

And so we begin another year, full of wonder and excitement.   Eila, you are a whirlwind of delight every single day!  You love books, and baby dolls, and dirt.  Everything you do turns into a mess – all the toilet paper unrolled, all the clothes out of the drawers, crayon on walls, marker on faces, paint on clothes, spilled food, broken dishes, scattered papers.  Every single time the house gets quiet, too quiet, I know I can find you in the bathroom eating toothpaste.  You are a tornado of activity, but you keep me on my toes.  I love that you are so full of life and movement and action.

Grandma likes to joke that you have only two volumes: Loud and Too Loud.  Grandpa grins every time you tell him that you “need money for your potet (pocket).”  And you are Esme’s favorite playmate, even though conflicts often leave her with your teethmarks in her skin.  When you are upset you always, always say “I need food” and you think that “Lotat” (chocolate) is the cure for everything (and you just might be right).

You love music and singing and spend time every day at the piano.  You adore birds and can sit so very still, though not very quietly, at the window watching for the family of “wale” (quail) that live in the backyard.  When you spot a bird, it is pure joy and loud excitement every single time!  That same excitement extends to the hot air balloons so prevalent in our neighborhood. 

You are a runner and a climber and a jumper.  I love your wiry limbs and messy hair so very much.  You are mischievous and determined and you have the most contagious giggles.  Most of all, you are sweet beyond measure.  At least once a day you make your way into my arms saying “I love my Mama.”  You tell your baby sister that she is a “precious sunshine” and marvel over her “chuvvy chuvvy cheeks” before smothering her with kisses. 

You still like to cuddle every night when I sing to you at bedtime and when your chubby little hands find their way to my cheeks, I know without a doubt that this is as good as it gets.  I can’t imagine anything better than spending my days with you.  Happy Birthday little one, I love you a million times over.

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