On your birthday, there are a few things I want you to know. First, we feel so lucky to have welcomed you into our family exactly one year ago. Maybe it's because you have the benefit of having an older sister (and we made all of our mistakes on her - just kidding, Emmie!), but almost everything about your first year has seemed to go pretty well. Yes, there were hiccups along the way, and yes, there were days that most certainly wouldn't qualify as easy by anyone's definition, but by and large I will always look back on your first year of life with a smile.
Second, I want you to know how much you are loved. For me, it has been especially fun to watch Emily grow to love you. And someday - maybe ten years from now - you may not believe me, but you are one of her very favorite people. She adores you, she takes great pride in the fact that you are her sister, and she is always on your side. She loves making you laugh, and you don't disappoint. Your infectious smile and giggle are so much a part of your personality, and we are thankful that you are often such a happy child. You have an entire extended family - aunts, uncles, and grandparents - that think you're pretty great. You have a mom and dad who delight in you each and every day, and you have a God who will always watch over you.
Third, I want you to know some of specific things you do that make you unique. You love to cuddle any and all things soft, and you give phenomenal hugs. You don't like being cooped up, and are always on the go. You have begun pointing to things you want to see, touch, and grab and you squeal like a stuck pig when you don't get your way. You enjoy being read to for short periods of time, and will help turn the pages. You must also believe that every book is supposed to be a "touch and feel" book, and will spend forever combing your fingers over the pictures. You were an early walker, and are pretty athletic. You can go up and down stairs with great ease. You like being outside, in new places, and around people. You have amazingly beautiful eyes, and I can never decide what color they are. You seem to detest getting new teeth, and sometimes will stuff your entire little fist in your mouth to see if that will make everything feel better. You are quick to cry, but easily comforted. You have flaws, of course, but to me you are perfect because you are you.
I love you so much, and I celebrate you today, Sophie Grace.