I can’t today with this one right here, you guys. I took this above photo one week ago, and today she is 1. ONE! …a walker-zooming, water-bottle drinking, peek-a-boo playing, itsy-bitsy spider loving one year-old! She MADE my family’s 2017, and I’m forever thankful for her arrival in our life. Rae, your timing was just perfect.

It’s been 12 whole months of her! Ugh, I’m tearing up now, but I wanted to pop on this space to tell the story this day, a year ago – the day Rae was born. I remember it being so normal, but also odd right from the beginning, and mixed with the perfect amount of excitement and unexpected delight that comes with a new baby. // I had gotten up early, as I always do, and as I was making coffee and feeding the cats, I kept hearing my phone go off. Text after text, ding after ding. My cousin was due the 9th, which was four days away, but I had a feeling the texts were about the baby.

Sure enough, my cousin was in labor!

My Aunt Laura needed to go to the hospital, but didn’t want my cousin Michael, who has down syndrome, to have to spend the whole day in an uncomfortable waiting room. Because I worked from home, she called me up, and I was happy to have her drop him off and spend the day with Mikey! I got him comfortable on the chaise of my couch, set him up with the remote and a drink, and he was good. I kept reminding him that he was going to be “Uncle Mike!” Here’s a shot I took of us two together:

My dad offered to stop by and bring us some pizza for lunch, which (DUH!) I’m not going to turn down. We ate and chatted, and couldn’t wait for ‘the call’. At 12:17pm, Raelyn was born, and we got the first photo of her:

Gah! My dad, Mike, and I cheered! We ate our pizza, found out she weighed 6lbs. 2oz., and was almost 20 inches long. We chatted and laughed and ate our pizza and giggled at the thought of her. The sun was pouring in through my windows, and the world was bigger and brighter. // I had to get back to work for mambi, but I guess the excitement and the carbs were a bit much for my dad & Mikey. At one point I turned around from my desk and saw this:

Men, right? Haa haa! Ya gotta love ’em! // After my work day was done, I drove Mike and myself to my mom’s house, and we three carpooled together to the store to get flowers & chocolates before heading to the hospital.

Hospitals creep me out, but you can’t help but love them when you’re there to peep a new born baby that just entered the world. Amiright?! We found my cousin’s hospital room, walked in slowly + quietly, and rolled up on her in my cousin Lauren’s arms. I didn’t cry, but I was SO happy. Babies friggin’ make people SO happy. Birth is a friggin’ miracle. I looked at this tiny little beef burrito, all wrapped up, and she looked a lot like the old man muppet with the round head…

…and I noticed she also had my cousin Lauren’s deep nail beds. Then I got to hold her.

…and the rest is friggin’ history. // I know she’s not MY baby, but when you’re 32 and always wanted to be a mom, but you know you’re no where near that yet…and then this new little love comes along that I knew I was going to watch grow up, like, this baby is IN my fem squad – and then she gets dropped in your arms???!!! It was true love at first sight.

For me, the moment I held her – this moment right here – was the kickoff. It was the start of all the light and love and giggles and smiles she brought to last year, and gosh, reflecting on that is just what’s it all about, isn’t it? // After the hospital visit, I went to the diner with my mom, Aunt Laura, and Aunt Sis. I wouldn’t have wanted that day to end any other way. It was truly great.

Here are a few of my favorite ‘Rae moments’ from these past 365 days:

She’s the best! as all babies are. // I’m in awe of all that’s come in the time between these two images:

Happy 1st Birthday, Rae! I’m honored that I get to be your big cuzzie, and watch you grow up. May God continue to bless you! Babies are gravy. // See photos from her Christening HERE.

January 5, 2018

RAELYN is 1 year old

January 5, 2018

RAELYN is 1 year old

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