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Dear Laila,

Laila, looks like I forgot about this website for over a year. I’m so sorry! Since I last wrote, I finished my Master’s Degree, passed the LMSW exam, and landed my dream job as a School Social Worker for the Blue Valley School District. Most importantly, last October, I married your daddy! You were the star of the show at the wedding (please ask to see the photo of you carrying the flower basket in your mouth). A little over a month ago we went to Mexico with Mimi, Papa, Aunt Erin, Uncle Matt, and cousin Peyton. You were sick at first and mama was very scared… but we had a blast! You loved the Coatis and having a big girl bed of your own. This time around you also loved the beach. We collected sea shells and fed the fishies. For the first month of 2018 we were both sick on and off so lots of snuggles and TLC were a must!

Last time I wrote you hadn’t even said “Mama” yet. Man, what a little over a year really has done to your vocabulary. You started daycare last August and you have added so many words and phrases to your repertoire. You are one smart (and sassy) almost 2.5 year old. Right now your favorite sayings are: “nope!”, “I don’t want to”, and “I will not!” – luckily, these are paired with “Kiss?”, “Hug?”, “I love you Mama/daddy”, and “I’m shaking my butt!” 🙂

Your favorite movie right now is Moana (“Kwana”) and your favorite food is Oatmeal (“happy meal”). You don’t necessarily have a favorite toy right now but you like your chairs and blankets and talk about them often.

In a month we are going to Disney World and you are excited to visit Mickey and Minnie Mouse’s castle. You asked if Minnie Mouse would bite your baby toes when we meet her. Dad and I got a good laugh out of that.

You constantly tell us that you want a baby sister- although we can’t promise anything, we are working on it.

Your best friends at school are Greyson, Mia, and Chloe. Although she isn’t your teacher, we really like Ms. Elise- she normally helps you get settled in when we get there in the morning.

Naps and bedtime are rough, hopefully this is just a phase.

Hopefully we are caught up now, I’ll try to write more frequently!

Love you more than the sun, the earth, the moon, and the stars,

Mama

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Dear Laila, 

Sweet baby girl. Last weekend was your first birthday and we had a wonderful party at our house with all of our family and close friends. It was so bittersweet. In the last week you have gone from barely walking to walking everywhere and hardly crawling. You just continue to impress me with how quick you pick things up when you try them.

Last weekend me and daddy got engaged! I am so excited to continue to grow as a family and also excited to get to share a last name with you and him. This next year is going to be pretty crazy but it will definitely be worth it.

I love your little gap-toothed smile, your squishy cheeks, and your wild hair. Most importantly, I love your quirky personality and overall happy outlook and attitude. You are one happy baby, and I am one happy mama. 

Now only if you would start saying mama…

I love you anyways 🙂 

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Dear Laila, 

These last few weeks you have started to take a few steps on your own and you’re working really hard on saying “mama”. You’re also working on four new teeth! 

I’m starting to get really anxious about being away from you for 3 days a week starting this far. I hope it isn’t as hard as I think it will be.

Your first birthday is coming up and mama is a busy bee planning it all. You will have so much fun.

Love you through and through baby boo. 

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Dear Laila,

This past Sunday you stood up without holding on to anything for the first time! It was so amazing to get to be with you during this huge milestone. Since then you have been practicing standing up on your own more. Although I love watching you grow, I am also scared. You are climbing on everything and are especially interested in the stairs and outlets/power cords. 

You have four teeth now and your two top teeth are SO FUNNY. they are super far apart and ridiculously cute. 

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Dear Laila,

Good morning my little girl on the move. You are out of control lately! Can’t and won’t sit still unless you’re sleeping. You love climbing onto things (including my face and daddy’s face) and you have learned to slowly climb up stairs. Crawling on the floor is a piece of cake for you, you speed demon. You are using everything in sight to pull up to standing and you desperately seem like you are trying to get ahold of the whole standing/walking stuff. SO SCARY! In addition to your two cute bottom teeth you have gotten a new top tooth as well! Soon you will look like a little baby beaver. I got you a toy remote so you maybe would get over your obsession with putting the real remotes in your mouth. You are also now obsessed with electrical cords, great. Trying to keep you alive is getting harder and harder. 

I still love you more than I can put into words, my little baby bug

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Dear Laila,

My little bug, the last week has been wild! You started crawling on April 7th and started sitting up on your own a few days before that! Two major milestones in less than a week! Stop growing! You’re also getting your second tooth, right next to your first tooth so soon you will have two bottom teeth. SO CUTE. 

I’m planning my concentration year for my MSW right now and kind of (really) freaking out about having to be away from you three days a week. I know you’ll be ok, I just hope it’s not as bad for me as I think it will be. I love spending all the time I can with you, love.

You’re the best, you little mobile shark toothed baby and I love you madly.

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Dear Laila 

Last Monday (3/21/16) I felt your first little tooth nubbin. It was bittersweet for me as I am going to miss your contagious gummy grin. We had an amazing time visiting Grammy, grandpa, and aunt Syd in Palm Desert and you got to see the ocean for your first time in San Diego. 

Friday dad and I leave for Florida again. I am getting everything packed up for you to stay with all of your grandparents while we are gone. The thought of leaving you for four nights makes me teary eyed just thinking about it. You are my world and I don’t want to miss anything. I am going to miss you so much. 

I love you to the moon and back. I think about you every second that I am away from you. 

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Dear Laila

Dear Laila, last night you slept through the night… in my arms. I am hoping we can figure out how to get you to sleep through the night in your crib too! Every day your smile, laugh, and funny little noises make me grow to love you even more. I never knew I would be able to love like I love you and I am so thankful that you have taught me to love in such a deep way.

You are my world and I love my life as your mama.

 

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Dear Laila,

Yesterday you said “mama” for the first time! Actually you yelled it. I don’t think you correlate mama with me yet but it still melted my heart.

Today I sucked snot out of your nose using the Nose Freida for the first time. The first time you didn’t mind it but all times following you’ve been pretty upset. I hate to see you sick. I hope you get better soon.

You are my stuffy nosed snuggle bug and I love you so much.

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Dear Laila,

As I watch you in your Jumperoo on this delightfully warm Thursday morning in February I can’t help but smile. You are growing up with such wonder, such fascination for everything around you. If Tonka or Olive walk by you stop what you’re doing and simply stare at them, following them with your eyes, until they leave your sight. You are not scared of them at all, which also makes me extremely happy. I hope Olive lives long enough for you to remember her, she was my first baby and I hope you get to have a special bond with her like I do.

We are both sick today. I got you sick. I am sorry, but there was really no way around it, I’ve only washed my hands a good 500 times and made sure not to cough or sneeze around you but, this was unavoidable. You still woke up as your normal smiley happy self, with dried snot stuck under your nose (SO CUTE THOUGH!).

The last few days we have tried some fruit. On Tuesday we tried bananas and yesterday we tried apples. You loved them both! Today we will try pears! It is so much fun to watch you try and experience new things. I watch you learn something new every day and I am so lucky that I get to be your caregiver so I don’t miss a beat.

I love you more than Olive and Tonka love to lick your feet. My little mini, you are very loved.