It is almost beyond my comprehension that my sweet baby girl, pictured here on the day she was born, is now a tall, beautiful, smart and spunky 5 year old.
Where did the last 5 years go and can I please slow down the next 5??
For all the emotion I feel about Grace growing up, I have to also admit that I’ve gotten a glimpse of what life will be like with bigger kids and I’m honestly excited for the changes ahead.
Five years old is very different than four or even four and a half. Grace’s personality is in full force and she’s so fun. She’s also a handful, but on good days I can view her high passion and emotion as a strength that will take her far and allow her to be a powerful force in God’s kingdom.
On bad days I feel overwhelmed and terrified that I’m doing everything wrong and I want to run away screaming. #truestory
Remembering that God sees her, that He loves her more than I even do, that she is His masterpiece and He has prepared good works for her to do (Ephesians 2:10), and that He is faithful to complete His good work in her until the day of Christ (Philippians 1:6) gives me such hope and it calms my fearful heart.
He is so good. My finite mind cannot even conceive all His goodness.
Now that Grace has left her baby and toddler years behind and is barreling full force into childhood, I’m able to see how our life will change as each of our children grows up and enters this territory. We can talk with them more to understand what’s on their minds and in their hearts, we can share deeper truths with them and help them wrestle through tough things, we can set off on adventures without being interrupted by nap time, or skipping nap and paying for it by 5pm. We can stay up late and have bonfires in the summer nights when it’s finally dark. We can push the boundaries of bed time to watch a fun movie and enjoy a little sleeping in the next morning. We can watch their creativity blossom as they run and jump or color and dance. We can explore what they are interested in and move forward with extra curricular lessons and activities.
There’s a whole new frontier ahead and even though it’s only peeking over the horizon, I’m excited for what it holds.
In the meantime, I’m still soaking up snuggles and baby rolls and infancy and toddlerhood…
Well I am when it’s not pushing me to my knees in prayer over how incredibly selfish and demanding I am. Let’s not gloss over how challenging parenting really is.
But let’s not miss all the ways it is incredibly beautiful.
Isn’t all of life like that?
Excruciating and euphoric.
Maybe just for a highly emotional gal such as myself :)
But this big girl with all of her personality and unique fashion sense is so.much.fun.
We celebrated the weekend before her birthday with a few friends and a small My Little Pony party. That was the theme she chose when we went to Party City and wandered the aisles. She had so much fun choosing party favors and decorations. I’m glad I thought to include her in the process instead of just doing what I wanted.
My mom spent the night before with us and was SO HELPFUL the day of the party…watching Drew, cutting and washing fruit, giving decoration advice and keeping the birthday girl happy while she eagerly anticipated the party start time :)
Grace also chose all of the snacks (ruffled potato chips, Cheez-Its, strawberries, blueberries and juice boxes) and her birthday cake (vanilla cake with pink frosting and pearl sprinkles)
This girl knows what she wants!
I had fun making my mom’s Bonnie Butter Cake recipe and decorating the cake with all of Grace’s decoration picks. I will say that cake stands really ought to be bigger! They are only slightly larger than a standard round cake which leaves NO ROOM for any piping or decorating. This meant I smooshed the sides and bottom of the cake when I put the glass lid on it and I wasn’t a happy camper about that let me tell you. Fortunately I was able to touch it up the day of the party and I don’t think anyone but me noticed the messy parts.
The girls all arrived and after a little bit of shyness all started to play together.
I didn’t plan any party games, but they had fun blowing bubbles, playing ring-around-the-rosy, drawing with sidewalk chalk, and running around.
A few of the moms stayed and we enjoyed chatting while the girls played :)
Cake and ice cream (mint chip and orange creamsicle) were enjoyed by everyone.
Her sweet friends were all very generous and brought lovely gifts that she’s been enjoying ever since!
Andy and I bought her a big girl bike and helmet and while it’s still a little too big for her (20″ bike) she’s getting better and better at riding it and she’ll be able to use it for years to come!
On her actual birthday I took her to get her ears pierced. We weren’t sure we were ready for it, but after getting her a set of clip ons and seeing how cute and proud she looked in them, we decided to go for it.
I didn’t get any pics of the actual process because I was holding her hands and helping her get through it (it looked painful and was done one ear at a time!) but here’s an “after” shot when she was picking out a stuffed animal :)
My sister took her to the movies that afternoon and they had fun playing games and eating popcorn and slushies. That night we had dinner at Red Robin and the waitstaff very loudly sang a happy birthday song to her. She was totally freaked out and intimidated by the loud singing but enjoyed half of the ice cream sundae they brought her :)
Overall it was a great WEEK of celebrating and I’m excited to see what this fifth year of life has in store for my sweet Gracie Bear.
Laurie Kroll says
What a girl! How fun it was to see and read about her birthday week after the fact! She is an amazing and witty girl who I love and look forward to her future years….
Maureen Kay says
Thank you for sharing your stories of your family. Sounds like you put a lot of thought in the process of being a mom and providing your family spiritual guidance as well. Too bad you can’t be cloned. So many families I encounter can barely get the basics
So refreshing to see how the simple pleasures in life are being enjoyed and your children are thriving. Keep up the g Or work, Rebecca.
Maureen, thank you so much for the encouraging comment! :)