Dearest Ursula, Today you are two.
"I don't smile on demand."
You are growing up so quickly. And while it’s thrilling to watch you explore the world around you, it’s also bittersweet: you’re my baby girl. I don’t know if I’m ready for a big kid.
But ready or not, here you are. Walking to the park with your backpack on. Choosing your own clothes. Ditching the diapers. (THANK YOU for that one, babe. One week into potty-training, and you’re already a pro.) Saying “cool beans” when you put on your sunglasses. Demanding particular snacks, YouTube videos, outings and visitors. (You want your entire extended family to visit you every day. I admire your commitment to family — but most of them have day jobs, hun.)
You love Emma the yellow Wiggle (and, subsequently, all things yellow-, bow-, glasses-, drum-, dance- and bike-related). You love Elmo. You love baby sharks, particularly this song and dance. When quizzed, you can identify most of the letters of the alphabet — and know that N becomes Z when tipped on its side, and M is a W that’s just upside-down. You can count to ten, but only when we’re walking up the stairs. Otherwise, you skip a few numbers then get stuck on 13.
“I do it” and “I see it” are your most-used sentences.
You love wearing sunscreen. Any kind of lotion, really.
You wish you could wear earrings and mascara. You’ll have to settle for a blush brush and the occasional swipe of lip balm for now.
You think you have a “cute bum.” Never change. (Although you might not want to always announce it.)
You love stickers and want Mommy and Daddy to fix the ones you’ve torn in half.
You expect daily dance parties.
Strangers stop to compliment your giant blue eyes. Your dad and I often feel like we’re a minor celebrity’s bodyguards when we go for walks with you. People gawk at you — and ignore us.
Last week at the market, you stole my green smoothie and drank it all. Next time I'll order two.
Your favourite songs (as of this week): “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star,” “Apples and Bananas,” “Baby Shark,” “Little Sir Echo,” and “Peanut Butter (and Jelly).”
You devour pancakes and scones and waffles and fruit salad and yogurt and granola and “purple cert” (Raisin Bran, the cereal in the purple box). You’re the best brunch date.
Your “truck” sounds like “f*ck” and we try so hard not to laugh when you yell this in public.
After lunch and dinner, you announce it’s time for “potty, books and bed.” When you say “books ground,” you mean that you want Daddy to read to you on the floor — so you can jump all over him.
You often bring books, toys, sunglasses, a water bottle, and a comb to bed with you. Always be prepared.
You’re still book-obsessed. I promise to always support this.
When I ask you if you need to use the potty while you’re playing with friends, you roll your eyes in exasperation like I’m bothering you. It’s because I am, child. It’s my job to bother you for the rest of your life.
You frequently use “please” and “thank you” and “sorry” — and usually at appropriate times. (You didn’t need to apologize to the door last week. But I’m sure it appreciated it.)
You love your baby brother already. At the end of the day, you rest your head on my round belly so we can sing “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” to him. You hug my belly and yell, “Hi, baby! Hi, baby!” You love visits to the midwife and want to be a “baby help” and a “baby doctor.” I can’t wait to introduce you two in September.
We celebrated your birthday on Sunday with family: another indoor picnic because the weather never likes to cooperate. This year’s theme: U2-meets-twoti-frutti. You spent the hours before the party pacing the house, hyper-anxious for cake, balloons, presents and “party!” And donuts. (Thank you for bringing the Dutchie back, Tim Hortons! And thank you, Matthew, for the amazing cake — and buttercream frosting.)
Not every day is easy. You’re a stubborn firstborn, just like your mom and dad. You’re testing and learning limits. You're not afraid to fight for what you want. You've mastered instant-tears and the dramatic collapse. And…you’re a morning person. (PLEASE SLEEP IN.)
But, as Drew Holcomb sings, “You’re like a piece of heaven in a hurricane.”* We wouldn’t have it any other way.
It’s an honour to celebrate you, little one. We’re so happy God entrusted us with you.
Happy birthday, Ursula.
We love you.
*Song of the day: