Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Five cheers for Eliza!

Dearest Eliza,

Today, on your FIFTH birthday, I honor you!

When I asked you last night what you were most looking forward to about turning five, you replied:

"Being able to read more books!" Learning to read is just one of the changes that have occurred since turning four. When I remember last summer I will think of my precious girl who was still little enough to love Thomas the train, sharing a tent with you in Lake Powell, seeing you twirl in your princess dress at Uncle Matt's wedding, and taking a vacation to the beach with two of your very best friends.

Testing too high for the public preschool program, I was left with a difficult choice. Would we send you to private preschool? It was a half hour drive from home, expensive and five days a week. With your baby sister due to arrive, I didn't feel that I would be able to provide you with all of your social and academic needs. I was a complete disaster when I dropped you off. My tears continued for weeks, even though you fully embraced your new adventure. You were collecting new friends and asking for play-dates. I was delighted and impressed with all the neat things Miss Mitzi and Miss Tina did with your class. You grew so much under their careful and loving guidance.

October arrived and so did your baby sister. You took to her instantly. You graciously share Mom's attention with two siblings. You "look after Lottie" for me when I need help. You encourage us to make her laugh and are incredibly affectionate. You are POLITE. Wow. I don't know how that happened, but I receive comments on how well you use your manners all the time.

Trying new foods remains our greatest challenge. It's something I'm determined we figure out soon no matter the circumstance. I'm sorry that I didn't stick to my guns at a younger age. I know I'm partially to blame for your fear of tasting something you may not like.

The holidays were spent as a family of five in South Carolina. We celebrated the arrival of snow and played our hearts out in it. Little did we know that in a few months we'd be landing back in Utah where you'd suddenly have a FULL DOSE of winter... straight through April. (Boo!)

I worried over you when it came time to move. You were leaving the security and familiarity of our home, your friends at preschool and your dearest playmates. Still, you handled the change with enthusiasm. You are a great example of living in the moment.

Henry remains your best friend. The pair of you play so well together. I frequently express my luck in your friendship as it frees me up to take care of the baby, make a bed or two or indulge in a selfish moment (laptop). Thank you for being a great example to him.

You are a great artist! You would be so disappointed if I left that one out.

I think you are hilarious. Nana Marie and I took you to get your nails done last night per our birthday tradition and let me tell you, it was a night of belly laughs."There isn't a shy bone in that body" Nana said as we watched you charm your way into the hearts of the three nail salon ladies. They were giggling at your reactions, scratching your itchy forehead, giving commands in a foreign language that you mysteriously understood and treating you like a Queen. They doted on you.

"She so cute!"

Your enthusiasm for the activity faded as your exhaustion caught up to you.

"Are you sleepy Eliza?"

"No. Just bored."
Minutes later you appear uncomfortable. You are fighting an urge to scratch your face.

"I feel like I have mosquito bites everywhere" And before I know it, your arm is up and the salon lady is scratching your armpit for you. Nice.

"I want my nails in a pattern please. Pink, purple, pink, purple... like that... okay?"

Dipping your feet into the warm water delighted you. However, in a matter of seconds you announce,

"This water is warm. I have to go potty!" Driving home, Nana and I laugh as we talk about the outing. Wanting to include you in the conversation I call back,

"Did you have fun, Eliza?"

"At what?"

I'm glad it was as memorable for you as it was for us! I love you.

Do you know what else is hilarious? The questionnaire you answered about me for Mother's Day.

(click to enlarge)
"My Moms favorite hobby is

Laughing out loud - still.

You have a tender heart. This is one of your greatest qualities. You are sensitive to the needs of others; even if its a Disney character. As an example: every time we watch Tangled, you tear up when it seems that all hope is lost for Flynn Ryder. Frustrated, you wipe away tears.

"My eyes want me to cry Mom!" It's as though you have zero control over your emotions. Oh weird. That sounds a little familiar.

When I leave for the grocery store, you wave me the "I love you" sign until you can't see me. You insist on a huge batch of hugs and kisses and reiterate over and over how much you'll miss me. And then you sneak in,

"Bring me back a treat, please."

I love this. We sing together at night. Right now you're favorite song is "Love is spoken here." You still ask for snuggles and have promised to stay with me forever.

Eliza, being your Mom is such a privilege. I love you! Happy birthday baby girl.



Teresa McCormack Flegal said...

Eliza,you are a treasure. I love you to pieces.Nanna Teresa

*Jess* said...

Happy Birthday dear Eliza :)

Ryan and Alicia said...

Happy BDay Eliza!!
Ali-I want to know where you got her adorable bday shirt?
Hope you guys had so much fun celebrating this awesome day!!