Happy birthday, baby girl! I love you so much and I am so proud to be your mom. You are smart, funny, beautiful, sassy, exasperating, demanding, loving, and free-spirited. You are determined to be late, no matter where you go. You love kittens, rainbows, glitter, and the colors pink and purple. You are willing to eat only about half a dozen foods - including, oddly enough, pickles. When we eat at a restaurant, your first order of business is to collect every pickle spear at our table. You continue to be the most social person I know and sometimes get in trouble at school for talking too much. Mrs. S sent you home with a "fix it plan," asking you to fill it out and come up with a game plan to help you focus on listening during instruction time. I suggested that perhaps you could wait until recess to talk to your friends. You burst into tears and exclaimed, "But what if I have to talk RIGHT NOW?!"

Last Friday, your Meemaw and I took you to Sears to have your seven-year-old photos taken. As usual, you only wanted to wear dresses for the photo shoot (you selected one fancy one and a more casual sundress). I told the photographer that I'm not too big on props. My plan was to have photos with nothing but you in them. You looked adorable, of course.

When we were done with the session (at least as far as I was concerned), I packed up our stuff and went to wait in the lobby until it was time to review the proofs. You marched back into the studio and informed the photographer that you just wanted a couple more shots. You found a big prop mirror and dragged it over to the backdrop. "Would you take my photo with the mirror?" you asked the photographer.  She looked at me for permission and I shrugged.  Before I knew it, we had a bunch of photos involving props.  I adore your spirit, though. I have a hard time imagining a day when I, with all of my insecurities and low self-esteem, could look at a photographer and essentially say, "Listen, I just don't feel like you have enough photos of me." I love your confidence, baby!

Last night I tucked my six-year-old into bed for the last time and today I have a seven-year-old. I don't know where the time has gone, but I sure am enjoying the ride. I love you with all my heart, beautiful girl.