It's time I TAKE time to pay a tribute to my eldest daughter on her 9th birthday (a few days late). It seems like a lifetime ago when I found out I expecting my first baby. I was thrilled, scared, excited, nervous - everything! I didn't know what to expect. Everything was so new. The pregnancy was quite normal, followed by a normal delivery, and a sweet, TINY 6 lb 5 oz baby girl. A girl with masses of dark hair... and face like mine.
I couldn't stop staring.
I remember bringing my own baby album with me to the hospital just *hoping* that I *might* have a baby who resembled me. I know I've mentioned once or twice (or a dozen times) that I'm adopted and while I wouldn't have chosen to have it any other way - I always was curious what it would be like to look into the face of someone else and see a bit of yourself staring back. TJ was just that. I could see immediately the resemblance and it made my heart sing! I could also tell immediately that she had brown eyes - not the usual blue that most newborns are known for. They were brown, from day one - hour one!
Those brown eyes have melted my heart many times over the past 9 years. They have also tried my patience, stressed me out, and made me laugh. While she really does look a lot like I did at her age, her eyes are her Grandma G's - no doubt. I love the warm, almost reddish brown that they are - they are FABULOUS.
This girl was meant to be born first in our family. She was blessed with a happy, nurturing personality - always looking for ways to help, and obeying quickly and with out complaint when asked to do something (almost always). She is happy to share and does so without thinking about it. She is also a leader. Often, whether her sisters want to or not, she is the boss. That sometimes backfires on her, but her heart is always in the right place.
She is smart. Very. Her teachers often give her extra assignments, reports, and presentations to work on because she is usually ahead of the class in her school work. She has also been asked to assist the teacher in helping other students with their school work. I don't want to take her studious habits for granted - I know that she works hard to do well - but she blows me away with what she knows.
She is spiritual. She truly has a desire to love the Lord and obey His commandments in all things. Her little heart breaks if she feels that she has disappointed her parents, or the Lord, and she immediately makes the necessary change. She often blows me away with her depth of Gospel understanding, and also understanding of the world. She is very mature for her 9 years.
She loves her family - especially her little sisters. And they adore her. Enough said.
She is high spirited. Sometimes that gets her into trouble. She gets very, very excited about things and loves to be the center of attention. But she is always concerned about how others are feeling and tries to cheer up everyone around her. I think that's why she has so many friends who love her.
She is talented. She can sing, play piano (seriously learning difficult songs by ear!). She is a phenomenal artist (drawing, coloring, painting, creating) and loves to create beautiful works of art. She often wins contests at school for her artwork.
She is goal-oriented. She often sets goals and reaches them. Right now she is trying to save for a Nintendo DS Lite. She wants one before summer so she can use it on our road trip. She has saved up every penny for months and now has about $65 (after she paid her tithing and put some in a mission fund). She wants to earn extra money, so she learned how to tie those friendship bracelets and wants to sell them. I bought one to get her started, and hopefully she'll be able to make more to earn more money. She has decided to buy a used Nintendo DS from online so she can have enough money to buy a game she wants, too. She is frugal and smart with her money. She could teach me a thing or two :)
I love this girl. She is an example to me, she is a good and faithful daughter - to us, and to her Heavenly parents. We love her and have felt blessed to have her as a part of our family these past nine years! Now I can look forward to the next 9!