Today is my Bria's 8th birthday! I just can't bring myself to believe that my tiny little baby is not so tiny anymore. I hate that she no longer likes Princess dress ups, and prefers Hannah Montana. She doesn't want to be cute, but is very concerned about being cool. She is beginning to be a young woman, rather than a little girl.
It makes me sad and happy all at the same time.
I thought that today I will remember the times when she was a tiny little baby, and a princess obsessed little girl.
On her actual birthday. Friday the 13th. Full moon. October. (Should these things worry me?) I had a relatively fast 4 hour labor and pushed for 15 minutes. She was a little peanut at 6 lb 5 oz. This is her hospital picture. She was a very alert baby, and she's never really stopped being alert and observant. She was also bald, as all my babies tend to be.
First birthday! I started a tradition (which didn't really last too long) of taking the kids for professional portraits on their birthdays. I remember buying this dress at the mall just for the occasion and being so excited about it. Bria was a precocious little one, already talking quite a bit at this age and just being her darling self. Still pretty bald, except for the funny little mohawk she grew. Maybe you can see it a bit in this picture. Second birthday! That year, I dressed her up in her Halloween costume for her birthday portraits because it was just too cute not to. The finger on the cheek thing was totally unposed. Just Bria being her adorable little self. At this age she talked to everyone she met, and astounded them with her vocabulary. I'll never forget the day my friend sneezed and she said "Gesundheit!" to her with perfect pronunciation. She's wearing a wig, so you can't really tell that she's still basically bald. although it's a bit more even and not quite so mohawk-esque. Shortly after her hair finally began to grow. Thankfully.
Third birthday! (Yes, I am scanning most of these out of scrapbooks....much easier to locate the pictures than trying to go through photo boxes.) We had just moved down to Arizona a couple months earlier. My mom couldn't wait to come down and visit, and came for Bria's birthday. She's the one that took her to the mall that year to get her portrait done. I wasn't even there for some reason. This was the year that she became thoroughly obsessed with princesses. She had several princess dress ups, and when she was wearing them she always referred to herself as "The Princess" and said funny things like "The Princess doesn't make her bed," and "Princesses don't go to time out!" She had been begging to start learning to play the violin, so we started her a few weeks after she turned 3, and she has shown incredible musical talent (phewsh!). She finally has some hair, and just continued getting more and more and hasn't stopped since.
Fourth birthday! I remember that in this photo session she had no qualms about being a little model for the camera. She used to be so extroverted, but sometime during this fifth year she started being a little more shy, and is now quite reserved. I am guessing it had to do with starting school. Once she warms up to a person, though, she'll talk their ears off. Around this time, she began pretending to be a kitty cat all the time. Specifically, she called herself "Cat Buttercup Princess Baby that talks Spanish" and she spoke in meow language (Spanish?) 75% of the time. The way she is wearing her hair in this picture was called "Bria hair" because that's how I always did it. Occasionally she'd ask for "Lara hair" which is a ponytail (since that's how I wear my hair 99% of the time) and she had other hairdos named for her friends and how they most commonly did their hair. This is around the time she stopped actually letting me do her hair.
Five years old! This is not taken on her actual birthday, but is her Kindergarten portrait (don't you think it's a funny school picture with the tree and everything?). I guess I stopped the birthday portrait tradition at age 4. Chloe's last one was at age 2. Oops. This one was taken a couple months after her fifth birthday. By then she was reading incredibly well, and she really loved being in school, even if she was a little shy. She is wearing her hair in "Lara hair" in this picture. My mom was visiting and did her hair that day for school pictures. She always lets Mamah do it, but not me. Hmmph.
Sixth birthday! Not the greatest picture, but I do know it was actually taken right on her birthday, so I'm using it. We had just moved to Cedar City and were up at Thanksgiving Point and she spent her birthday with family and cousins. She was really into Barbie and the 12 Dancing Princesses that year and got a whole bunch of the Barbie characters from that movie. She got glasses in the summer before she turned 6. She's missing her front teeth at this time (just like Chloe is now) and they didn't begin to grow in for a few more months! She came down with pneumonia the day after her birthday, and that's one of the main things I remember about her turning 6, poor thing! Her hair was very long at this point, cut into an adorable little layered do, that we actually had done this very day! Seven years old! I can't find the pictures on my computer that I took right on her birthday, nor have I scrapped them yet (I am so behind, I don't even want to talk about it!). This was taken a couple weeks after her 7th birthday, when she was a village child in Fiddler on the Roof. She really enjoyed that experience, and it helped get her out of her shell a little bit. She was still smart as ever, reading on something like a 5th grade level (she was in 2nd grade) and finishing up the Suzuki Violin Book 1. The thing I remember most about this birthday was the whole experience with facing her fears and getting her ears pierced. Her hair was pretty short this year, as she wanted it chopped way off at the beginning of the summer. I really liked to do it in a flip, when she would let me.
And now, today. Her eighth birthday. I haven't done her birthday portraits yet as I post this, so I will just post one from our photoshoot last week. I like this one because it really shows her personality. She may be shy at school, but at home she is fun and sometimes pretty sassy. She is my biggest helper and is learning to be very responsible with her little sisters, especially Sophie. She loves to read and play her violin. She is even starting to like math, too, thanks to her teacher this year. She practices her instrument most days without any argument, and looks forward to her Suzuki group lesson on Wednesdays. She tells me it's her favorite hour of the week. She is beautiful. She always tries so hard to make good choices and choose the right, even when her friends are not doing the best things. She is looking forward to being baptized in a couple weeks. She always reminds Joel and me to say prayers or do family scripture study or have Family Home Evening when we aren't on the ball. She is a joy, and I love her more than I ever imagined I could love a child. She is an excellent sport about being the oldest (most of the time), since that means that sometimes Joel and I are doing experimental parenting on her. After all, I've never had an eight year old before....I'm learning as I go. Oh, and yes, her hair is finally growing out from the super short cut a year and a half ago, and she loves it this length.
Happy Birthday, baby girl! I love you forever and always.