Ladybug Girl, Age Two.

How is it you’re already turning two years old? It was mere moments ago I felt you wiggling inside me, wasn’t it? Seems like I just saw your sweet face the first time, seconds after you met the world, before the cord that connected us was even cut. How is it that our first nursing was two years ago, and our last five months ago? That primal moment when you were fresh from my womb and I kissed your head and smelled your hair and knew you were *mine*, and all I had waited for. I can still smell that moment if I close my eyes. I hope I always can.  

Alexandra, Lexi, Lil Bug, Peanut, Cookie. You answer to so many names, because your Mama is fond of nicknames, and that’s fine with you. You are the sweetest, most affectionate, tender soul I’ve ever met, and your capacity to love others and bring Joy and sunshine into their lives astounds me. You love openly, freely, without reservation or fear of rejection,  and it inspires me to love more like you, because even at barely two, you love like Jesus. You were fifteen months old when I was first told how a baby was crying in the nursery and you ran to find a toy to comfort her. Daily you sweep me away with not only being the cuddliest cuddle bug this cuddly mama ever dreamed, but capable of the sweetest moments of spontaneous affection I’ve ever experienced. I love when you reach up and pull my face down  to kiss, or when we are at the park and you stick your face between bars and pucker up until i meet you there. Everyone who knows you knows you are the sweetest and most joyful child ever, and I’m so glad and blessed beyond words to get to be the primary beneficiary of that! 
You are two, and even you have some rebellion and sass in you. I’m praying for wisdom and strength to know when and how to discipline you, because I’m a softy, and you are terribly sensitive. I’m learning daily what battles to pick, and how when you seem you be extra mischievous, you’re really just asking for more attention and focus. I’m learning as you learn, Sweet Bug, and we will be patient with each other. 
As I have always dreamed, but never dared actually ask God, you are the ultimate girly girl. You love having your hair done, particularly in “Baid” (braids) and ask daily for some of mama’s makeup. Your favorites are,  “Bip?” (lipstick), “cheek?” (Blush stick) , and “pahko!” (Sparkle eyeshadow). I love it. You get so excited about new clothes and shoes and I laugh when you strut and dance around because you feel pretty. I love the humongous grin showing all your teeth and sparkle in those green eyes when I tell you are the most beautiful. Because you are, my love, inside and out. 
You’re learning so quickly, and sometimes I realize that I can try to direct and focus what you learn, but you are gonna pick up and run with concepts I never even concieved of! I have been working on colors with you, and you’re getting there, but yesterday you picked up a white crayon and announced “WHITE!” My jaw dropped, because, though I’ve read color books with you over and over, *I* have never taught you white. Now you show me that crayon over and over to impress me. You like making your Dadda and I proud, and I hope we do a good job of letting you know how proud we are of who you are every step along the way. I love watching you learn and grow and develop new skills. 
You definitely inherited the music gene, probably mostly from Dadda, but I hope a little from me too. You love to sing and play instruments, and I love to listen. Lately you’ve been very into me singing to you during cuddles, and also having me sing silly songs for you to dance to. I love making those memories with you. 
Watching you with your dolls and with babies you meet, I see clearly that you are very nurturing and maternal. When we gave you your baby penguin plush the other day, your first instinct was to lift your shirt and nurse it.  I’m so excited to see your loving and tender self as a big sister soon. You will be so sweet and helpful and love the baby so much! You already like to kiss my belly. You like to tell me also that you are gonna be a big sister like Elsa! 
 We don’t watch a ton of TV, but you are passionate about the few things we do watch. You love Blue’s Clues, Color Crew, Clifford, Daniel Tiger, Frozen, and of course, Gobble Gobble! (free birds). I love watching you enjoy these characters and sing and dance along.
Your favorite books are, “Little Blue Truck”, its sequel, all the Ladybug Girl books, all your Sesame Street books, your word books that we use to practice talking, and most of all, your bible. You ask for it constantly and also carry around my first bible, a white New Testament given to me in 1986. I pray you’ll always be so passionate and connected to God’s word. 
Our family has really enjoyed the Zoo this year so far, and I look forward to many more trips! You especially enjoy the prairie dogs, Bears, tigers, cheetahs, budgies, Penguins, and all the animals you can feed and pet. 
Lexi Bella, I could go on about you forever. I am so honored to be your mama, and watch you grow, and teach you new things. This next year is going to be a new adventure, but I know it’s going to be wonderful to adventure with you, my heart.  I love you. 

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