Hello Six! She took ballet. She took tap lessons. She loved to dance. We would put on music and she would choreograph her own dance and perform for us. She loved to sing. She would memorize the lyrics of a song and belt it out at the top of her lungs. She loved to dress up in costumes. She would go all out for any dress days at school or even dress up at home. She loved stories. Thanks to her Papa being willing to tell stories over Skype about Princess Isabella and Mr. Monkey. Who knew this would be the beginning of a love for all things creative?
I’ll never forget when I was pregnant with Isabella and we lived by this elementary school. It was the first day of school and I watched the five year old children with new backpacks walk into their first day of kindergarten. I was undone. I had tears running down my face simply thinking about that milestone in my unborn daughter’s life.
Five years later, I walked her to class on the first day of Kindergarten and I sucked in all the emotion and put on a smile until I got to the car and I cried my eyes out.
It’s now hard to believe that it’s only eight years until she will be graduating high school. A good friend of mine who currently has a senior in high school now offered me this beautiful advice to truly enjoy and drink in every moment. I have to keep that in mind when I’m going through a tough parenting situation and not try to rush through everything without taking it in.
Four was a year of change for us. We moved to Berkeley, California that year. We had to say goodbye to family and dear friends. You were so sad to leave Seattle, your cousins, your church and your friends. It was that summer that we found your school.
We visited almost every park in Berkeley. We also went to the library once a week gathering at least twenty books each time. I remember my mom taking me to the library and loving it. I wanted you to share that same love. We did a lot of exploring thanks to the Berkeley Public Library Discover and Go program. It gave us free passes to museums and fun kid locations. You and I had many adventures in the Bay Area.
Three is when you first went to preschool. You were beyond excited to get your big girl bed. You had discovered a deep love for cupcakes. You would sing songs like “What’s the Weather” and “Twinkle, Twinkle.” You loved to play at the park. Anytime we went to some place that had a water table you loved to stick your hands in and play. You were into playing with characters. You had a Mickey Mouse clubhouse set, a Cars set and a Nemo set. You would pick up a character and create a world around you. What fun it was to be three.
It was the year that you had a few intense sicknesses. I remember our first visit to the emergency room. You had some sort of croup and couldn’t breathe. The ride over in the car was enough for you to be able to breathe again. The ER doctor explained that getting in the cold air upright was a good way to help you out. It taught me a lesson as a mom to understand how to watch your symptoms and not freak out at every little thing.
Two isn’t terrible at all. In fact, to me the best videos come from Isabella at the age of two. I love hearing her speak. Where the word “tree” is pronounced “twee” and “banana” some how becomes “ba-lana” and “breakfast” is “breakpest”. I would not correct it. I know that is my “terrible two mothering”, but there was something so endearing hearing her saying a word in her own cute two-year-old way. Later, there was “soup-case” instead of “suitcase” and “froggy” instead of “foggy”. I still smile thinking of how she first said those words. It is simply the best.
Your first year was exciting to say the least. We planned a party at a park club house with all your friends in Washington. I will never forget when you took your first steps at your cousin’s house while the Nutcracker played in the background. From the beginning, you loved to talk even if it was making sounds and eventually words. You loved to explore and spend as much time as possible with your cousins. One was a very good year.
I think it has been forever since I’ve posted a blog to this account. It is crazy to think that I’m about to be a mom of a child who is turning Double Digits. So, I felt it was appropriate to relish the moment and do a countdown to ten even though technically it’s a count UP to universe of double digits.
She was eleven days old when we took this picture. I remember loving her nursery. At the time, it was my favorite room in the house. I remember the sleepless nights and my husband literally hallucinating that bugs were around him because he needed sleep. I remember her falling asleep on me. I remember the joy of all the first experiences from eating, crawling, making noises to words, experiencing snow and loving trees. Parenthood is all about figuring it out and having no idea what you’re doing. Then you find a rhythm and it instantly changes based on how much they grow in one year.
Here is a quick video down memory lane for the year before she turned one.